Can You Guess These Sci-Fi Book Titles From a Single Sentence Summary?

By: Brittany Rowland

Can You Guess These Sci-Fi Book Titles From a Single Sentence Summary?
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About This Quiz

What do you think of when you hear the term science fiction? If you're like most people, you think of space travel, extraterrestrial life, scientific experiments, zombies, time travel and futuristic worlds. Science fiction can contain all of these things, but it fundamentally deals with humanity's reaction to advances in science and technology and the ethical implications involved. For instance, even if scientists could genetically recreate dinosaurs, does that mean they should? 

While some ancient myths incorporated elements of sci-fi, science fiction developed as a distinct genre in the 1800s. Many critics believe Mary Shelley's "Frankenstein," published in 1818, to be the first sci-fi novel. It explores the ethics of scientific experimentation and questions what responsibilities a creator has toward its creation. Other notable science-fiction writers emerged during this century, including H.G. Wells,  Jules Verne and Edgar Rice Burroughs. 

Science fiction remains a popular genre today, as evidenced by the host of sci-fi books, movies and TV shows available. Just look at how many stories have come out in the last few decades that focus on the survivors of some apocalyptic event. People have always had anxieties about the future, and science fiction provides an outlet for that uneasiness. 

So now it's time to put on your robotic thinking cap and identify these popular science-fiction novels from past and present! Ace it and earn bragging rights with all your sci-fi buddies!


Frankenstein A scientist injudiciously creates a horrifying creature in a laboratory. What's this classic book?
"Frankenstein"
Mary Shelley wrote what many critics consider the first science fiction novel, "Frankenstein," when she was only 18 years old! The novel remains popular and spawned a horror film series.
"The Time Machine"
"Dune"
"Flowers for Algernon"

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"Fahrenheit 451"
"The City & the City"
"The Martian"
Andy Weir originally self-published this science fiction novel before a publisher purchased it. "The Martian" portrays an American astronaut surviving on Mars alone against all odds.
"Starship Troopers"

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33 I Robot Androids must follow the Three Laws that govern their interaction with humans. Can you name this novel?
"Childhood's End"
"Leviathan Wakes"
"Jurassic Park"
"I, Robot"
"I, Robot" by Isaac Asimov established the Three Laws of Robotics, which say that robots must obey humans and protect them from harm. The novel contains a series of loosely related stories.

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steampunk submarine Aboard the "Nautilus," Captain Nemo explores creatures of the deep. What book is this?
"Meg"
"Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea"
French author Jules Verne published this novel in 1870 to great success and acclaim. The novel was remarkable for its detailed description of the submarine the "Nautilus" and marine life.
"A Fire Upon the Deep"
"The Giver"

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bizarre time travel machine A scientist discovers the Eloi and the Morlocks in this classic science fiction yarn. What is it?
"The Forever War"
"The Time Machine"
H.G. Wells published "The Time Machine" in 1895 and popularized the concept of time travel. The narrator, known only as the Time Traveller, goes thousands of years into the future and back again.
"Ender's Game"
"Red Rising"

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39 Children Of Men Humanity faces possible extinction when everyone suddenly becomes infertile. What's this science fiction thriller?
"Hyperion"
"Speaker for the Dead"
"The Children of Men"
P.D. James shows how society would react to sudden, widespread infertility in "The Children of Men." In 2006, the novel was adapted into a thriller starring Clive Owen and Julianne Moore.
"Ancillary Justice"

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Enders Game Can you identify this novel based on the summary? The children at Battle School are Earth's only hope against the Formics.
"Fahrenheit 451"
"Flowers for Algernon"
"1984"
"Ender's Game"
In Orson Scott Card's "Ender's Game," Ender Wiggin is a brilliant child at Battle School believed to be humanity's best shot at defeating an alien insect race called the Formics, or "buggers."

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Handmaid Offred joins a resistance against the Republic of Gilead. What's this novel?
"Neuromancer"
"The Handmaid's Tale"
A totalitarian and patriarchal society comes to life in Margaret Atwood's 1985 novel "The Handmaid's Tale." In it, Offred and other handmaids are forced to breed because of their unique fertility.
"The Left Hand of Darkness"
"Dune"

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War of the Worlds Martians invade Earth to steal its resources. Can you identify this novel?
"The War of the Worlds"
H.G. Wells wrote this novel in response to British imperialism, imagining how Earth would react if an alien force invaded and tried to wipe out humanity. Orson Welles radio performance in 1938 caused a panic!
"Solaris"
"The Martian Chronicles"
"The Children of Men"

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A Wrinkle In Time A girl and her genius brother travel to other worlds to rescue her father. What's this novel?
"Old Man's War"
"Doomsday Book"
"A Wrinkle in Time"
Madeleine L'Engle published this children's novel in 1962 and introduced the idea of a tesseract, a portal that allows travel through time and space. The book was the first in a series.
"The Windup Girl"

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Fahrenheit 451 Firefighters burn forbidden books in this dystopian novel. What is it?
"The Martian"
"Fahrenheit 451"
As the novel explains, books burn at Fahrenheit 451. Ray Bradbury wrote this science fiction novel in which society has banned books. The fireman Guy Montag rebels against his destructive role.
"Slaughterhouse-Five"
"Anthem"

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alien Valentine Michael Smith adjusts to life on Earth after his upbringing on Mars. Can you identify this novel?
"Ready Player One"
"Stranger in a Strange Land"
This landmark 1961 novel by Robert A. Heinlein focuses on a human raised by Martians who later returns to Earth and struggles to adjust to human society. The book has been banned from some schools.
"I, Robot"
"Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?"

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26 Starship Troopers Johnny Rico enlists in the Federal Service and fights in the Bug War. What book is this?
"Childhood's End"
"Starship Troopers"
"Starship Troopers," written by Robert A. Heinlein, is a military science fiction novel published in 1959. The book explores the philosophical issues related to war and militarism.
"Journey to the Center of the Earth"
"The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress"

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Artificial Womb In a supposedly utopian future, people are born from artificial wombs and indoctrinated from birth. Can you name this novel?
"The Handmaid's Tale"
"Brave New World"
Aldous Huxley's 1932 novel "Brave New World" imagines a future where people are sorted into different classes based on their abilities and intelligence. Only John the "Savage" is troubled by this society.
"The Martian"
"Stranger in a Strange Land"

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tv eyes In a dystopian version of the world, Big Brother spies on all the citizens. Can you name the book?
"Brave New World"
"Ready Player One"
"The War of the Worlds"
"1984"
George Orwell predicted the future in 1949 when he published "1984," a dystopian vision of a totalitarian state with heightened government surveillance. You'd better not commit any thought crimes!

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Dune Paul Atreides fights to control the planet Arrakis. Can you name this novel?
"Dune"
Frank Herbert's "Dune" introduces a futuristic interplanetary world and the character Paul Atreides. When his family acquires Arrakis, a planet with a valuable spice, his life gets more complicated.
"Snow Crash"
"The Invisible Man"
"Slaughterhouse-Five"

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Alien planet Colonists from Earth land on Mars and interact with the native Martians. Do you know this novel?
"The Martian Chronicles"
Ray Bradbury tied together a series of previously published short stories with some new material in this 1950 novel. The book details Earthlings' attempts to colonize Mars after Earth has become unlivable.
"The Martian"
"Hyperion"
"Solaris"

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Jennifer Lawrence and Josh Hutcherson - The Hunger Games Katniss Everdeen competes in a fight-to-the-death battle with other children. What's this novel called?
"Farmer in the Sky"
"The Hunger Games"
Adapted into a popular movie franchise, "The Hunger Games" by Suzanne Collins depicts a dystopian future in Panem, where children from each district are forced into a deadly battle.
"The 5th Wave"
"The Maze Runner"

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14 - player one Wade Watts hunts for an Easter egg in the OASIS. What's this book?
"Starship Troopers"
"Ender's Game"
"The Hunger Games"
"Ready Player One"
In Ernest Cline's novel, people escape their gloomy world by entering a virtual reality game, the OASIS. Wade Watts joins a contest to win riches by finding an Easter egg in the game.

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The Meg A prehistoric shark rises from the depths of the Mariana Trench. Do you know this novel?
"Farmer in the Sky"
"Meg"
Steve Alten's science fiction novel "Meg: A Novel of Deep Terror" shows what happens when a mammoth shark, the supposedly extinct Megalodon, reappears in the ocean. It wreaks havoc, of course!
Fahrenheit 451"
"The War of the Worlds"

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GettyImages-1145931128 Todd runs away from his hometown, where everyone can hear each other's thoughts. What's the name of this book?
"The Knife of Never Letting Go"
The first book in Patrick Ness' "Chaos Walking" series, "The Knife of Never Letting Go" follows Todd Hewitt as he escapes from Prentisstown with just his dog, Manchee. But the townspeople come after him....
"1984"
"I, Robot"
"The Hunger Games"

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27 Jurassic Park Scientists open an amusement park featuring genetically engineered dinosaurs. What's the name of this novel?
"Leviathan Wakes"
"The Dark Forest"
"Death's End"
"Jurassic Park"
Fans of the "Jurassic Park" film series have Michael Crichton to thank for writing the 1990 novel. The book explores the ethical ramifications of genetically recreating dinosaurs for people's amusement.

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Return of the Gods Thomas wakes up in a mysterious labyrinth with frightening monsters. What's the name of this book?
"Speaker for the Dead"
"The Maze Runner"
James Dashner's young adult novel keeps readers guessing about the labyrinth and the children deposited into it with no memory of who they are. Thomas tries to crack the "code" and find an exit to the maze.
"Mockingjay"
"Jurassic Park"

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Blade Runner Bounty hunter Rick Deckard hunts for fugitive robots. Can you name this book?
"A Wrinkle in Time"
"The Windup Girl"
"The Host"
"Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?"
Philip K. Dick's 1968 novel inspired the critically acclaimed film "Blade Runner," directed by Ridley Scott. The novel takes place in a post-apocalyptic San Francisco following a nuclear war.

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alien invasion Cassie Sullivan fights to survive a devastating alien invasion. Do you know this novel?
"The 5th Wave"
In Rick Yancey's popular young adult novel, Earth faces five waves of an alien invasion that wipes out most of humanity. Teenage Cassie Sullivan struggles to survive in a hostile new world.
"Catching Fire"
"Alien Secrets"
"A Wrinkle in Time"

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How Much Do You Know About the Nazi Wehrmacht of WWII  2 In an alternate history, the Axis Powers win WWII. Can you identify this book?
"World War Z"
"Jurassic Park"
"The Man in the High Castle"
Inspiring a TV series, "The Man in the High Castle" by Philip K. Dick imagines how the world would be different if Germany and Japan had won World War II. The U.S. lives under their totalitarian rule.
"The Handmaid's Tale"

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Children magic Peaceful aliens called Overlords take over Earth. Does this book sound familiar?
"Flowers for Algernon"
"The Time Machine"
"Childhood's End"
Considered Arthur C. Clarke's best work, the 1953 novel "Childhood's End" shows what happens when an alien race indirectly rules Earth. For one, the children start developing psychic powers!
"The Hunger Games"

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Zombie A UN agent interviews survivors of a zombie apocalypse. Can you identify this book?
"Death's End"
"World War Z"
Max Brooks' 2006 novel "World War Z" contains the accounts of various survivors of a zombie plague. The book inspired a film adaptation starring Brad Pitt and explores the effects of a worldwide epidemic.
"A Fire Upon the Deep"
"Doomsday Book"

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The Giver A boy named Jonas becomes the Receiver of Memory in this dystopian novel. What is it?
"The Giver"
Lois Lowry's young adult novel "The Giver" portrays a seemingly utopian (but actually dystopian) world in which there is no pain or suffering. Only Jonas and the Giver see the flaws in this world.
"Divergent"
"The Hunger Games"
"The Host"

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soldier from video game future To solve a murder, an inspector investigates in two separate worlds. Can you name this novel?
"Frankenstein"
"Neuromancer"
"The City & the City"
Combining science fiction with a police procedural, "The City & the City" by China Miéville introduces the twin cities of Besźel and Ul Qoma, which occupy the same space at the same time.
"Ender's Game"

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monk in ruins After a devastating nuclear war, a group of monks protects humanity's knowledge of science. What's the name of this book?
"A Canticle for Leibowitz"
Published in 1959, Walter Miller's "A Canticle for Leibowitz" imagines a post-nuclear war world in which people spurn scientific knowledge. Over the next millennia, an order of monks guards this knowledge.
"Dune"
"Snow Crash"
"The Knife of Never Letting Go"

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alien invasion Billy Pilgrim survives WWII and alien abduction. Do you remember this book?
"Slaughterhouse-Five"
Kurt Vonnegut's anti-war novel "Slaughterhouse-Five" uses a nonlinear storyline and an unreliable narrator to portray the life of Billy Pilgrim, a fatalistic time traveler. It's certainly a challenging book!
"Divergent"
"Ender's Shadow"
"The Martian Chronicles"

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How Much Do You Know About How Your Organs Work 1 A mentally challenged man undergoes surgery to boost his IQ. What's this book?
"Flowers for Algernon"
In Daniel Keye's novel, scientists select Charlie, a man with a low IQ, to take part in their study. The surgery boosts his IQ by over 100 points, but it has other, unintended consequences.
"Semiosis"
"Oryx and Crake"
"Altered Carbon"

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The left hand of darkness Genly Ai tries to persuade the Gethenians to join the Ekumen. What's this book?
"The Forever War"
"Ringworld"
"Red Rising"
"The Left Hand of Darkness"
Ursula K. Le Guin's 1969 novel "The Left Hand of Darkness" made her popular as a science fiction writer. In the novel, Genly Ai tries to better understand the ambisexual Gethenians.

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crumbling city Teenager Ann Burden believes she's the sole survivor of a nuclear war ... but she's not. Can you name this book?
"Z for Zachariah"
In Robert C. O'Brien's posthumously published novel "Z for Zachariah," Ann Burden is excited to discover there's another survivor of a nuclear war: a man in a radiation-proof suit named John Loomis.
"Needle"
"Flowers for Algernon"
"Cinder"

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