The Machine Dynasty Series by Madeline Ashby

Madeline Ashby’s Machine Dynasty trilogy is a boldly original series that explores questions of artificial consciousness and what it truly means to be human. Focusing on Amy, a rogue self-replicating humanoid robot, the series is equal parts intriguing character study and wildly inventive sci-fi adventure.

The Steerswoman Series

Traditional fantasy narratives are too often dominated by the same storytelling conventions, but The Steerswoman’s Road and the rest of the series take familiar themes and place them in a brand new, compelling world. Following the curiosity of Steerswoman Rowan, we join her daring adventure to seek truth and justice.

The First Thing and the Last by Allan G. Johnson

This novel is a heartbreakingly honest tale about domestic violence, but more importantly, about the toll trauma takes, and about learning to survive and overcome the lasting effects of horrific violence.

Company Town by Madeline Ashby

Madeline Ashby’s followup to her Machine Dynasty series is every bit as original and daring. In a world where almost everyone has been cybernetically “enhanced,” Hwa’s lack of enhancements make her unhackable. Company Town’s tale confronts questions of corporate power, who benefits from technological advancement, and who gets left behind.

The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver

This beautifully written novel tells the story of the Prices, a missionary family who move from Georgia to the Belgian Congo in 1959. As the years and decades pass, you grow incredibly invested in the lives of the four Price daughters, each with their own incredibly distinctive voices and personalities.


In this magnificent new addition to the YA fiction ranks, heroine Sierra Santiago discovers her own incredible abilities as she explores a Brooklyn that manages to feel both insistently real and defiantly magical.

All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders

Charlie Jane Anders’ genre-bending novel of science and fantasy follows the friendship between Patricia, a witch who can communicate with birds, and Laurence, a technological genius who experiments with time travel. Weaving concerns both personal and global, the book takes place in a world ravaged by starvation, disease and climate change, and builds up to a stunning conclusion.

Kindred by Octavia E. Butler

Science fiction at its most powerful and important. Octavia Butler brilliantly uses time travel to explore slavery and its legacy as the main character, Dana, a young black writer living in 1970s California, is repeatedly transported to a plantation in pre-Civil War Maryland. Kindred’s unflinchingly realistic look at slavery and the intersections of racial and gender power dynamics make it essential and unforgettable.

The Necromancer Chronicles by Amanda Downum

Spy, necromancer, and forensic investigator Isyllt Iskuldur is the fascinating hero of Amanda Downum’s Necromancer Chronicles, books that effortlessly blend fantasy adventure and political intrigue in a rich and vibrant fantasy world where people often struggle with the expectations placed on them because of their cultural background or gender.

Song of Solomon

A classic offering from Nobel Laureate Toni Morrison, whose Pilate Dead is one of the most memorable characters, of any gender, to ever leap from the pages of American fiction. The drama at the heart of this story unfolds over decades, and weaves a rich tapestry of black American life from slavery to the middle of the 20th century.


A critically-acclaimed novel by Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie about a young Nigerian emigree to the US, Americanah offers a compelling evocation of racial and gender dynamics in the diaspora.

A Door Into Ocean by Joan Slonczewski

Joan Slonczewski’s landmark science fiction novel centers on an all-female culture who live in ecological balance with their planet and in true equality with each other. It received acclaim for the ways in which it incorporated actual biology into its narrative and for its depictions of nonviolent cultures and nonviolent resistance.

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