Science Fantasy Books Like A Connecticut Yankee In King Arthur's Court
Typically the science fiction and fantasy genres in literature couldn't be further removed from each other, but over time, authors began blurring the lines between the two. These science fantasy novels often feature science-like explanations for any supernatural fantasy elements. One of the most famous examples of science fantasy is the 1889 Mark Twain novel, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court. The novel features a Yankee engineer transported back in time and space to 6th-century England. Using his 19th-century knowledge, the protagonist is able to trick people into thinking he is a powerful magician. For more books that combine these two popular genres, check out the following science fantasy novels like A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court.
by Julian May
The Many-Colored Land is a 1981 novel by Julian May and part of her Saga of Pliocene Exile. The story begins in 2034 when a French physicist discovers how to create a one-way, fixed-focus time warp to six million years in the past. Since going back in time won't affect the future in any way, there is nothing preventing people from making the trip if they desire peace and freedom. So in 2110, a particularly strange group, consisting of a starship captain, athlete, woman priest, paleontologist, and others tired of the technological perfection of their time, decide to journey to the past. However, upon arrival, they discover that Pliocene Europe is not uninhabited, but home to two warring races from another planet. These races possess supernatural skills, such as psychokinesis and telepathy, and the humans find themselves caught in the middle of the conflict.
by C.S. Friedman
Black Sun Rising is a 1991 novel by C.S. Friedman and the first book in her Coldfire Trilogy. It is set on a seismically active world called Erna, which was settled by colonists from far-distant Earth over a millennium ago. The colonists did not expect that Erna was home to a terrifying natural force called the fae, which can give life to a person's worst nightmare images. Over time human sorcerers were able to manipulate the fae for their own profit, but little did they realize that in the process, they were providing strength to the demonic forces that feed upon such efforts.
by Anne McCaffrey
Dragonflight is the first volume in the Dragonriders of Pern series by Anne McCaffrey. The book was first published in 1968 and is set on Pern, a planet colonized by humans in the far future. Initially, these colonists planned on adopting a low-technology agrarian lifestyle after making the planet their home. However, they are forced to tame the indigenous flying, fire-breathing dragons to fight back against an unforeseen threat from the skies over Pern. These dragons are genetically altered to become larger and use telepathy to bond with their rider. Dragonflight is the story of one such rider, Lessa, during a time when the people of Pern have begun to think that the threat from space is just a myth.
by John Ringo
There Will Be Dragons is a 2003 novel by John Ringo and the first book in the Council Wars series. It is set in the future where things like war, disease, ill-timed death, and more are a thing of the past. However, this paradise ends when the council that controls the Net goes to war leaving people who have never known things like want or pain scrambling to survive. Edmund Talbot is a master smith and historian from the village of Raven's Mill. Like other communities, it is a place where people have elected to return to the natural life of soil and farming. Still, when all hell breaks loose, and refugees begin flooding in, Edmund finds himself having to step up and fight for survival.
by Jack Vance
Tales of the Dying Earth by Jack Vance is set in a far-future Earth where the giant red sun is on the verge of burning out forever. In this dying world, what is left of humanity has forgotten most technology and lives in the ruins of older, more advanced civilizations. Since they no longer understand technology, the line between magic and science is also blurred in this world. Tales of the Dying Earth is not just a great science fantasy novel but also hugely influential. For example, the magic system created by Vance was used by other creators like Gary Gygax as the basis for the Dungeons & Dragons magic system.
by Robert A. Heinlein
Glory Road is a 1963 science fantasy novel by Robert A. Heinlein. It was initially published in The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction before being released in hardcover form. The protagonist, E.C. "Scar" Gordon, responds to a newspaper ad after being discharged from war, which leads him to join a beautiful woman named Star on a perilous quest to retrieve something called the Egg of the Phoenix. Glory Road is unique in that it not only features a typical hero's journey but also continues the story and explores what happens after the quest is over and the hero no longer has an important quest to keep him busy.
by Matthew Woodring Stover
Heroes Die is a 1998 science fantasy novel by Matthew Stover and the first in his Acts of Caine series. It is set in the future where the earth has become a Dystopia. When a parallel fantasy world called Ankhana is discovered, the corporations in charge of Earth use it as a source of virtual-reality entertainment for the masses. Actors, such as Hari Michaelson, are sent to the world of Ankhana, where he plays an assassin who has to go on adventures and kill others for the amusement of audiences back home. However, when his wife, a fellow actor, is captured, Michaelson is confronted with the greatest challenge of his life.