Even with all the advances in film and television, the most interesting and imaginative science fiction and fantasy work continues to be published in books. Before Game of Thrones or The Hunger Games ever appeared on other media, they were first published in book form, by George R.R. Martin and Suzanne Collins, respectively. And this is the way it has always been. From Jules Verne’s 20,000 League’s Under The Sea to George Orwell’s 1984, books have always led the way when it comes to the science fiction and fantasy genres. And while many sci-fi and fantasy books are considered classics, such as J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings, many other books have received far less fanfare, but have nevertheless helped to shape modern science fiction and fantasy. Here are some books that helped to change the science fiction and fantasy genres forever.
10. The Martian Chronicles, Ray Bradbury
While another one of his books, Fahrenheit 451, was more popular and acclaimed, author Ray Bradbury’s novel The Martian Chronicles has proven to be his most influential work. A collection of inter-related short stories which was first published in 1950, the book is about the human race’s struggle to flee from the potential of nuclear war on Earth and seek refuge on Mars. Critics initially dismissed Bradbury’s depiction of Mars as too far-fetched and fantastical. However, explorations of Mars in recent years have proven that the writer’s vision of the Red Planet was largely correct. Many of Ray Bradbury’s ideas from The Martian Chronicles are actually discussed today by scientists, including at NASA itself. In fact, NASA placed a copy of the novel in the Phoenix Martian Rover that it sent to Mars in 2008.