May the Fourth Be With You! Blasting Space Opera.

By The Secret Bookshelf

By The Secret Bookshelf

We love Space Opera. Big, bold and pure escapism. For May the Fourth, here's our celebration of the best out there

Iain M. Banks Culture - 25th anniversary box set: Consider Phlebas, The Player of Games and Use of Weapons

Iain M. Banks

£24.99 £23.24

Such a fabulous writer, the Culture universe is one of the best loved in SO.

Komarr

Lois McMaster Bujold

£5.99 £5.57

If you haven't read Lois McMaster Bujold, you've missed out. Wonderful character driven Space Opera with a main character in Miles Vorkosigan who you'll either want to throttle, or you'll adore. (Or both).

Dune

Frank Herbert

£12.99 £12.08

The Daddy of the genre, Dune is an epic, sprawling family dynasty drama set in space. With drugs and giant sandworms. What else could you want in a book?

Space Captain Smith

Toby Frost

£8.99 £8.36

We adore Toby Frost. So funny and fresh. Think of it as a Biggles in Space.

Luna: New Moon

Ian McDonald

£9.99 £9.29

Ian McDonald is Northern Ireland's leading science fiction author, building on the greats such as James White and Bob Shaw, and this is his epic, sprawling luna-based Dynasty.

Prador Moon

Neal Asher

£8.99 £8.36

Another of the great SO worlds, the Polarity has the breadth and depth you'd hope for.

Star Wars: Thrawn

Timothy Zahn

£9.99 £9.29

The Star Wars extended universe is vast, fitting for a film that spawned so much interest in the genre (is it sci fi? Or is it fantasy? We reckon it's Space Opera). This is one of the recently loved additions

Star Wars: Episode IV: A New Hope: Official 40th Anniversary Collector's Edition

George Lucas

£16.98 £15.79

But for those who like their Star Wars tradition, here's the original novel.

Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy: The Illustrated Edition

Douglas Adams

£20.00 £18.60

This is such a gorgeous new edition, released for the 40th anniversary with illustrations by Chris Riddell. Well worth picking up.

Star Trek: The Wisdom of Picard

Chip Carter

£9.99 £9.29

We know better than putting the Star Wars universe in and leaving out the Trekkies....

We are Legion (We are Bob)

Dennis E. Taylor

£10.60

A recent addition to the SO canon, this series is so much fun, from an independent author.

Revelation Space

Alastair Reynolds

£10.99 £10.22

Vast, epic and imaginative, Reynolds captures the feel of Space Opera so well.

Leviathan Wakes: Book 1 of the Expanse (now a Prime Original series)

James S. A. Corey

£8.99 £8.36

The Expanse universe is one of the must-reads of the SO world.

The Dreaming Void

Peter F. Hamilton

£10.99 £10.22

Peter F Hamilton, one of the UK's leading SF writers, creates vast books, that are guaranteed to keep you reading for weeks. This one, the first in his Void series, is one we love.

Old Man's War

John Scalzi

£8.99 £8.36

Scalzi is one of the newest exponents of Space Opera, and this is his most acclaimed entry into it. For a bit of fun, we'd also recommend Red Shirts.

The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet: Wayfarers 1

Becky Chambers

£8.99 £8.36

Immersive, character led and diverse this is the entry book into Becky Chambers fabulous series.

Starship Troopers

Robert A. Heinlein

£9.99 £9.29

Love it or hate it, Starship Troopers - and Heinlein - are quintessential SO. (We love it)

The Star Beast

Robert A. Heinlein

£11.99 £11.15

Jo's entry book into SF, Heinlein wrote more YA sci fi than is often known. This one, about an alien pet is one of the best fun.

The Fall of Hyperion

Dan Simmons

£10.99 £10.22

Much loved, this is Dan Simmons' classic SO.

The Skylark of Space

E E Doc Smith, Lee Harkins Garby, et al.

£16.98

An oldie but a goodie, EE Doc Smith is one of the greats.

Red Rising: Red Rising Series 1

Pierce Brown

£8.99 £8.36

The entry novel into Pierce Brown's epic series.

Ender's Game: Book 1 of the Ender Saga

Orson Scott Card

£8.99 £8.36

The classic book about child soldiers, Ender's Game is the first - and best - in the Ender universe. Remember, the enemy's gate is always down.

A Fire Upon the Deep

Vernor Vinge

£10.99 £10.22

Superhuman intelligences, aliens, awesome physics. Space opera in a nutshell.

Foundation

Isaac Asimov

£8.99 £8.36

Asimov's classic Space Opera - a must read for anyone loving the genre.

Gateway

Frederik Pohl

£9.99 £9.29

Frederick Pohl's grand Space Opera novel.

Rendezvous With Rama

Sir Arthur C. Clarke

£8.99 £8.36

A C Clarke's classic first-contact story is compact, exciting and entirely unforgettable.

Tau Zero

Poul Anderson

£15.99 £14.87

Space Opera doesn't have to be escapist - it can also be awesome science fiction in its own right, and this is a great example.

Ancillary Justice: THE HUGO, NEBULA AND ARTHUR C. CLARKE AWARD WINNER

Ann Leckie

£8.99 £8.36

So many awards and all richly deserved. Combining themes of AI, what it is to be human, and a rocking secondary world, this is modern SF at its best.

The Secret Bookshelf, Carrickfergus 

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