100 Must-Read Sci-Fi Fantasy Novels By Female Authors

While we at the Riot take some time off to rest and catch up on our reading, we’re re-running some of our favorite posts from the last several months. Enjoy our highlight reel, and we’ll be back with new stuff on Monday, July 11th.

This post originally ran May 2, 2016.


 
Ready for your TBR list to explode? I’ve gathered the 100 best sci-fi fantasy novels by female authors and there is sooooo much reading goodness to dig into. From YA to adult lit, from magical realism to epic fantasy to post-apocalyptic sci-fi feminism, from short stories to series, there’s a book on this list for every single reader.

Do note that I’ve only listed the first book in any given series, so expect that this list could easily give you ten times as much reading power (especially with those stick-to-your-gut epic fantasy series). I’ve also only included one book per writer to showcase the widest range of voices from sci-fi fantasy novels by female authors. So if you want to sink into a really prolific writer like Ursula K. Le Guin or Octavia Butler, you’ve got loads more to work with as well.

100 Must-Read Sci-Fi Fantasy Novels By Female Authors | BookRiot.com

 

1. Alanna: The First Adventure by Tamora Pierce

2. The Alchemy of Stone by Ekaterina Sedia

3Among Others by Jo Walton

4Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie

5. Ancient, Ancient by Kiini Ibura Salaam

6. The Antelope Wife by Louise Erdrich

7. Arrows of the Queen by Mercedes Lackey

8. Ash by Malinda Lo

9. Assassin’s Apprentice by Robin Hobb

10. The Pyramid Waltz by Barbara Wright

11. Biting the Sun by Tanith Lee

12. The Blazing World by Margaret Cavendish

13. The Bloody Chamber by Angela Carter

14. Boneshaker by Cherie Priest

15. Brown Girl in the Ring by Nalo Hopkinson

16. Cast in Shadow by Michelle Sagara

17. China Mountain Zhang by Maureen F. McHugh

18. Chorus of Mushrooms by Hiromi Goto

19. Cinder by Marissa Meyer

20. The Crystal Cave by Mary Stewart

21. The Darkangel by Meredith Ann Pierce

22. Daughter of Smoke & Bone by Laini Taylor

23. Daughter of the Blood by Anne Bishop

24. Daughter of the Forest by Juliet Marillier

25. Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris

26. Deathless by Catherynne M. Valente

27. The Devil’s Arithmetic by Jane Yolen

28. The Dispossessed by Ursula K. Le Guin

29. Doomsday Book by Connie Willis

30. Dragon Sword and Wind Child by Noriko Ogiwara

31. Dragonflight by Anne McCaffrey

32. An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir

33. The Etched City by K.J. Bishop

34. The Female Man by Joanna Russ

35. Flesh and Spirit by Carol Berg

36. The Forgotten Beasts of Eld by Patricia A. McKillip

37. Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

38. The Ghost Bride by Yangsze Choo

39. Graceling by Kristin Cashore

40. The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

41. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling

42. The Hearing Trumpet by Leonora Carrington

43. Her Smoke Rose Up Forever by James Tiptree Jr.

44. Hild by Nicola Griffith

45. His Majesty’s Dragon by Naomi Novik

46. The House of the Spirits by Isabel Allende

47. The House on the Lagoon by Rosario Ferré

48. Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones

49. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

50. Ink by Sabrina Vourvoulias

51. Inkheart by Cornelia Funke

52. The Island of Eternal Love by Daína Chaviano

53. Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke

54. Karen Memory by Elizabeth Bear

55. The Killing Moon by N.K. Jemisin

56. Kushiel’s Dart by Jacqueline Carey

57. Luck in the Shadows by Lynn Flewelling

58. Magic for Beginners by Kelly Link

59. The Mirror Empire by Kameron Hurley

60. The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley

61. Moving the Mountain by Charlotte Perkins Gilman

62. Mr. Fox by Helen Oyeyemi

63. My Christina & Other Stories by Mercè Rodoreda

64. My Soul to Keep by Tananarive Due

65. Native Tongue by Suzette Haden Elgin

66. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

67. Parable of the Sower by Octavia Butler

68. The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake by Aimee Bender

69. The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen

70. The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

71. The Red by Linda Nagata

72. Redemption in Indigo by Karen Lord

73. Rosemary and Rue by Seanan McGuire

74. Salt Fish Girl by Larissa Lai

75. The Second Mango by Shira Glassman

76. Shards of Honor by Lois McMaster Bujold

77. Shikasta by Doris Lessing

78. The Snow Queen by Joan D. Vinge

79. Slave to Sensation by Nalini Singh

80. So Far from God by Ana Castillo

81. Sorcerer to the Crown by Zen Cho

82. Soulless by Gail Carriger

83. The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell

84. The Speed of Dark by Elizabeth Moon

85. Spirits of the Ordinary by Kathleen Alcala

86. Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

87. A Stranger in Olondria by Sofia Samatar

88. Sunshine by Robin McKinley

89. Swamplandia! by Karen Russell

90. Swordspoint by Ellen Kushner

91. The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner

92. Valor’s Choice by Tanya Huff

93. War for the Oaks by Emma Bull

94. We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson

95. Who Fears Death by Nnedi Okorafor

96. Wicked As They Come by Delilah S. Dawson

97. Woman on the Edge of Time by Marge Piercy

98. The Woman Who Thought She Was a Planet and Other Stories by Vandana Singh

99. The Wrath and the Dawn by Renée Ahdieh

100. A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle

Thankfully a list of 100 sci-fi fantasy novels by female authors simply isn’t enough to cover all the amazing books out there. Hit the comments to share your favorites! 

We're giving away a 12-month Audible membership. Go here to enter, or just click the image below: br_rc_audible
VIEW COMMENTS