The All-Time Best Science Fiction Audiobooks

If you’re a science fiction fan seeking your next great listen, look no further — we’ve compiled a list of the best science fiction audiobooks ever published. This curated lineup contains the cream of the science fiction audiobook crop, from classic masterpieces to modern-day hits. Prepare to get sucked into a whole new world! 

Stranger in a Strange Land

Stranger in a Strange Land

Narrator: Christopher Hurt
Run time: 16h 20min

Why it's worth a listen: Valentine Michael Smith was raised by Martians and had never met another human until his arrival on Earth, where he must forge his own identity. As an insightful outsider, he changes the very fabric of everyday life on Earth with his message to make love, not war. Christopher Hurt’s narration brings to life this classic science fiction masterpiece, ushering it reverently into the 21st century.

 

Red Rising

Red Rising

Narrator: Tim Gerard Reynolds
Run time: 16h 12min

Why it's worth a listen: In this beloved New York Times bestseller, Darrow is a member of the Red caste and toils in the mines of Mars to make the surface habitable one day. But the Reds are being betrayed — the surface has been habitable for years. When Darrow learns of this betrayal, he sacrifices everything to infiltrate the Gold caste and bring them down from the inside. Narrator Tim Gerard Reynolds perfectly portrays Darrow’s transformation from lowly Red to ruthless Gold. He creates a driving momentum that will keep listeners glued to their seats as Darrow moves unflinchingly toward his goal. 

 

The Fifth Season

The Fifth Season

Narrator: Robin Miles
Run time: 15h 27min

Why it's worth a listen: The world is ending as a red rift opens across the world's sole continent, spewing ash and blotting out the sun. Meanwhile, a woman searches for her kidnapped daughter while trying to hide the fact that she's an orogene, able to manipulate the earth. The Fifth Season is the first book in the Broken Earth trilogy, and all three books in the trilogy have won the prestigious Hugo Award — an astounding achievement. Robin Miles narrates and mixes a relaxed style for the world-building moments with a raw intensity for suspenseful sequences that keeps listeners on their toes. Miles has a clear affinity for these characters and even nails the thread told in the second person, which is no easy feat!

 

The Stand

The Stand

Narrator: Grover Gardner
Run time: 47h 56min

Why it's worth a listen: One computer error at a Defense Department laboratory wipes out 99% of the world’s population. Panicked survivors choose sides between the good, followers of Mother Abagail, and the bad, followers of Randall Flagg, who is known as the dark man. The unabridged audiobook contains more than 150,000 words that were cut from the original manuscript and has been reworked by King, who gives us new characters and endows old favorites with additional depth. Narrator Grover Gardner, a master of accents and pace, has a voice you could listen to for hours — a good thing considering the length of King’s tome. 

 

Illuminae

Illuminae

Narrator: Collected Narrators
Run time: 11h 41min

Why it's worth a listen: Told through interview text, data, blueprints, and messages that make up a dossier called the Illuminae Files, Illuminae redefines the novel as form. The year is 2575, and Kady Grant’s planet is attacked by an unknown enemy. She narrowly escapes aboard one of three fleeing ships only to face increasing danger at every turn. Although told in a unique way, the authors never sacrifice the cultivation of real characters and emotion. The novel’s slew of dynamic characters is brought to life via an extensive cast of voice actors creating an experience that is akin to great radio plays of old.

 

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

Narrator: Stephen Fry
Run time: 5h 52min

Why it's worth a listen: Moments before Earth is demolished for an intergalactic highway, Arthur Dent is plucked from the planet by his friend Ford Prefect, a researcher for The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. The duo then begins an adventure-filled journey through space — one made all the more hilarious by Stephen Fry’s priceless narration. Dripping with the perfect amount of irony, Fry’s performance enhances the social satire at the core of this classic novel.

 

The Martian Chronicles

The Martian Chronicles

Narrator: Full Cast
Run time: 1h 10min

Why it's worth a listen: In Ray Bradbury’s classic, humans conquer Mars only to be later conquered by it as they become fascinated with the allure of an ancient Martian race. Bradbury delights in exposing both human strengths and weaknesses. The collected group of narrators give a stirring performance that enhances this collection of interlocking stories.

 

Provenance

Provenance

Narrator: Adjoa Andoh
Run time: 12h 35min

Why it's worth a listen: Nominated for both a Hugo and Locus Award for best science fiction novel, Provenance tells the story of Ingray. Determined to become the family heir, Ingray hatches a plan to prison break a renowned thief in order to steal back a priceless family artifact. What ensues is a character-driven space opera of the highest quality. Narrator Adjoa Andoh gives each cast member a distinct voice and accent, creating an almost cinematic audiobook experience. Andoh nails Ingray’s transformation from insecure and confused to confident and strong.

 

New York 2140

New York 2140

Narrator: Collected Narrators
Run time: 22h 35min

Why it's worth a listen: In the year 2140, sea levels have risen 50 feet and New York is a city of canals, with each high-rise serving as a virtual island. Wealth has become even more unevenly distributed. Nine voices from diverse walks of life weave together to tell a story of suffering and hope. Each voice receives its own narrator, adding real individuality and depth while also making it easy to differentiate between the many characters and subplots.

 

Brave New World

Brave New World

Narrator: Michael York
Run time: 8h

Why it's worth a listen: In a Brave New World, society is controlled by geneticists who create classes of people based on societal needs. Humans are obedient sheep ruled by the whims of the government. Published in 1932 to both acclaim and ire, the merits of Brave New World have been debated ever since. Michael York’s English accented narration is refined yet weighty, ideal for this thought-provoking masterpiece.

 

Parable of the Sower

Parable of the Sower

Narrator: Lynne Thigpen
Run time: 12h 3min

Why it's worth a listen: God is Change. It’s the central tenet of the Earthseed movement, whose unlikely prophet is a teenage girl named Lauren Olamina. Diary entries share Lauren’s story living in a violent 21st-century hellscape and the evolution of her Earthseed philosophy. Lynne Thigpen narrates with perfect pacing and inflection. Her gorgeous voice imparts meaning to every word uttered. This is one of the most artfully portrayed audiobooks you’ll ever hear.

 

Ender's Game

Ender's Game

Narrator: Collected Narrators
Run time: 11h 20min

Why it's worth a listen: War has raged for 100 years. Six-year-old Ender Wiggins enters Battle School hoping to become the general Earth needs, but Ender is not the only one hoping for the title. This 20th-anniversary edition audiobook contains an original postscript written and recorded by Orson Scott Card and is a full-cast production with top-notch voice actors and sound effects.

 

Shards of Honor

Shards of Honor

Narrator: Grover Gardner
Run time: 8h 42min

Why it's worth a listen: The first in the Vorkosigan series, Shards of Honor follows Cordelia Naismith and her survey crew after they are attacked by a renegade group from Barrayar. When Cordelia is captured and taken hostage by the Barrayan ship, she finds herself inexplicably drawn to the ship’s complicated Captain Vorkosigan. Grover Gardner narrates with a propulsive intensity perfect for this romantic adventure. He does an excellent job of bringing the novel’s many characters to life, depicting each of them with depth.

 

Jurassic Park

Jurassic Park

Narrator: Scott Brick
Run time: 15h 11min

Why it's worth a listen: Dinosaur DNA preserved in amber leads to the cloning of long-dead species and the building of Jurassic Park — where the dinosaurs roam once again. This hit by Michael Crichton spawned a book sequel and two blockbuster movie franchises. And if you’re looking to experience this classic in another format, Scott Brick’s chilling narration will immerse you in its sense of foreboding calm. Listeners are made to wait, wrapped in suspense, as tense scenes unfold with a slow, cool style. 

 

Dune

Dune

Narrator: Collected Narrators
Run time: 21h 5min

Why it's worth a listen: Blending adventure, mysticism, and political intrigue, Dune is the story of Paul Atreides, a son of royalty who is determined to avenge his family’s deaths. In doing so, he sets himself on a course to fulfill humankind’s most unattainable dream. The Dune audiobook is a stunningly rich and immersive production, with a team of talented voice actors and sound effects that will transport you to the planet of Arrakis!

 

I, Robot

I, Robot

Narrator: Scott Brick
Run time: 8h 25min

Why it's worth a listen: Published as a collection of short stories in 1950, I, Robot is the story of robots gone mad, robots with humor, and everything in between. It masterfully blends science fiction with fact as it chronicles the development of robots from their origins into the future — a future in which humanity, through its own genius, may render itself obsolete. Narrator Scott Brick captures both the humor and the darkness within I, Robot and makes the audiobook a thoroughly entertaining and thought-provoking listening experience.

 

Binti

Binti

Narrator: Robin Miles
Run time: 2h 30min

Why it's worth a listen: Winner of the Hugo Award and the Nebula Award for Best Novella, Binti is an ideal listening choice for science fiction lovers who want a quick listen. Binti is the first of the Himba people to be offered a place at the premier learning institution in the galaxy, Oomza University. The university and the Meduse have been at war for a long time, and they will put Binti’s life in danger as she travels to university for the first time. Robin Miles’s narration is lyrical and filled with rich emotion. Her vocal range is exceptional and makes Binti’s story linger with listeners long after the final chapter.

 

Ready Player One

Ready Player One

Narrator: Wil Wheaton
Run time: 15h 41min

Why it's worth a listen: It’s the year 2045, and the world is a dark, dystopian place. The only escape for many, including Wade Watts, is into a virtual utopia known as OASIS. Wade has devoted his life to finding and solving the puzzles hidden in OASIS as part of a game that promises massive power to the winner. Star Trek alum Wil Wheaton’s enthusiastic narration nails Wade’s witty cynicism regarding what the “real world” has to offer people like himself. Listeners nostalgic for the ’80s will adore this audiobook.

 

Anathem

Anathem

Narrator: Collected Narrators
Run time: 32h 28min

Why it's worth a listen: Fraa Erasmus lives in a sanctuary for mathematicians, scientists, and philosophers protected from the secular world. He ventures beyond the walls for the first time in years for the rite of Apert. But before his week is out, the world both inside and outside the sanctuary finds itself on the brink of cataclysmic change. Narrated with a sense of wonder by the production cast, the distinct personalities of each character are given nuance and depth. Those looking for an expansive and heady science fiction romp will appreciate Anathem.

 

Blade Runner (Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?)

Blade Runner (Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?)

Narrator: Scott Brick
Run time: 9h 15min

Why it's worth a listen: It’s 2021, a World War has killed millions, and humanity is leaving the planet in droves. Immigrants to Mars receive android helpers so lifelike that these artificial humans are banned from the Earth for fear of the havoc they might wreak. Unsanctioned androids live in hiding, and bounty hunters are tasked with “retiring” them, but cornered androids don’t go down without a fight. Brick’s brilliant narration is incredibly atmospheric. It is slow and deliberate with a bleak, melancholy tone wholly appropriate for the dystopian world in which the novel is set.