With the release date of No Man’s Sky coming ever closer, I thought it would be fun to go back to the roots of this game. The beautiful science fiction book covers that inspired creator Sean Murray and his team to create the beautiful art style we have come to love. But behind every beautiful book cover, there is an amazing story. To get you in the mood for No Man’s Sky I have created a list of must-reads to keep you warm at night until the game will finally be available to us humble humans. 

Number One is a book series that captivated Sean Murray so much he says ‘I can actually remember reading it and being hungry you know because I had forgotten to eat.’

You might also recognize the giant sand-worm from one of Sean’s older No Man’s Sky trailers. This book is a great read to get in the mood for the game and experience a world that made Sean Murray fall in love with sci-fi.

The Dune series: by Frank Herbert

Number two on the list will not only get you in the space traveling mood from zero to hyperspace but its name also holds a nice resemblance to No Man’s Sky. This series follows a different person every book set in the same universe. This is a bit like our travels will be. In the first book you will follow John Perry who did two things on his 75th birthday. First he visited his wife’s grave, then he joined the army.

The Old Man’s War series: Book by John Scalzi

Number three is one I assume many of you will have already read, but it has to be on this list. Dive into an amazing galaxy full of adventure and strange characters to get to know. Zaphod Beeblebrox–the two-headed, three-armed ex-hippie will not be the strangest thing you encounter along the way. You might learn something about traveling the galaxy, like the fact that a towel is about the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitchhiker can have.

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy series: Book by Douglas Adams

Number four is for the people among us who thrive on action, good fighting scenes and suspense. Based on United States military standards this book lets you experience the life of a recruit who goes through the toughest boot camp in the universe. Go on military style space-battles and face some of mankind’s most dangerous enemy’s out there.

Starship Troopers: Book by Robert A. Heinlein 

Number five will play out a bit closer to home. In our own stellar backyard if you may, this book, who was far ahead of its time, brings us to the year 2026. The red planet had been barren for eons but all that is about to change. A group of a hundred people is about to colonize mars and terraform the planet.  This may sound like a noble mission and for most of the colonists it is, but not everyone’s intentions are that pure.

The Mars trilogy: Book by Kim Stanly Robinson 

Number six will take us on an epic journey that holds everything from virtual reality to space battles and a massive amount of 80’s pop culture. This book will soon be made into a movie directed by Stephen Spielberg. To get a feel of the perfect setting of a virtual reality world, the makers of the movie actually consulted Sean Murray’s No Man’s Sky, so there will be influences in the movie. This book will keep you reading until you finish it.

Ready Player One: Book by Ernest Cline 

For our seventh book, we have something that might be a little more unfamiliar to most but it’s always nice to discover new things. In this book the Lockstep Empires civilization is carefully kept alive and living longer by careful hibernation. Start your adventure in this futuristic world with Toby McGonigal who gets himself in to trouble that should have been his end. However instead, he wakes up 14.000 years into the future in a strange and prosperous galaxy.

Lockstep: by Karl Schroeder 

The eighth book in our series focuses on the year 2021. War has killed millions of people and lots of animals went extinct. Fortunately the future is bright with technology and we can just make new robot animals that won’t be distinguishable from the real deal. And while we’re at it, why not make android humans to? But then the androids pose a potential danger and they are banned from earth. But these new beings won’t give up their new-found life so easily.

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (the blade runner series): Book by Philip K. Dick

The ninth book on this list will be for those who love the concept of the Sentinels in No Man’s Sky. Like the Sentinels, this book also contains a malevolent force. We start off our adventure with scientist Dan Sylveste who is investigating a galactic mystery. Nine hundred thousand years ago, something annihilated the Amarantin civilization just as it was on the verge of discovering space flight. Now Dan tries to uncover the secret behind the disappearance and he might have to pay for it with his life.

The Revelation Space series: by Alastair Reynolds

We have already arrived at the tenth book on this list. This intricate space opera is set in a future where humanity has colonized the solar system – Mars, the Moon, the Asteroid Belt and beyond – but the stars are still out of our reach. This book builds a world full of interesting characters who all have exiting stories to tell. The world is huge but comes brilliantly to life in this book that had everything we want from a good old sci-fi read.

Leviathan Wakes (the Expanse series): Book by James S.A Corey  

Finally, this list also has an eleventh book series that is set in a futuristic world but also has old fairy tale influences. This series plays out in the third era of our earth. The moon has been colonized a long time ago and the people living there have evolved to gain the ability of mind control. An evil queen rules Luna and an interplanetary war that earth has never seen before, looms ever nearer. But there is hope. The lost princess of Luna might be able to overthrow the evil queen and bring peace once more, the only problem is nobody knows if she is even still alive.

The Lunar Chronicles: by Marissa Meyer 

Why eleven you ask?

Well with so many amazing science fiction books out there, I had a real struggle not making a list composed of a hundred books. But I can’t make you scroll for that long. I know this list will most definitely miss a book you would have liked to see on it and I’m sorry that it’s missing. Please leave the title and the author of the book you think should be in this list down in the comments so we can make this a hundred-book list!

 

 do androids dream of electric sheepRevelation Lockstep Leviathan Wakes

CinderReady Player One

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Fleur Hartsuijker
Fleur Hartsuijker
Fleur is, and has always been a dreamer. Wanting to take off to other worlds, leaving this one behind. And more often than not her imagination takes her there. She loves reading sci-fi and fantasy and has always been a enormous Harry Potter fan. Her alter ego Elterna has always be her videogame nickname (Pokémon is her guilty pleasure).

She lives near Amsterdam in the Netherlands and currently teaches geography to high school students. Next year she aspires to go back to university to pursue a study in Earth Sciences, but for now No Man's Sky is the next big thing.