Today, let’s combine Science fiction with Crime and Murder mysteries. I absolutely love Sci-Fi books and also adore mysteries because of authors like Agatha Christie, so of course, Sci-Fi Crime is one of my favorite sub-genres. Here are some of the best Sci-Fi Crime books if you’re also interested in the sub-genre.
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1. Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by Philip K. Dick
For those of you who don’t know, the famous Blade Runner films take inspiration from this book.
In the year 2021, humans have colonized Mars and have created Androids to serve them. But, the androids have too much intelligence now and they don’t want to do the dirty work of humans.
Rick Deckard is a bounty hunter tasked to hunt down the rogue androids and “dispose” of them.
2. The Gone World by Tom Sweterlitsch
Shannon Moss is assigned to the murder of a Navy SEAL’s family and to find his missing daughter. She learns that the SEAL was an astronaut on a spaceship that got lost in time.
She must travel to the future and explore different possibilities to somehow find clues about the murder and find the murderer. But, the future reveals that there’s more on the line than just one family.
If she doesn’t solve the mystery in time, it can even result in the destruction of the entire human race itself.
3. Six Wakes by Mur Lafferty
The starship Dormire, carrying sleeping humans, is headed towards a new planet suitable for them. But, it would take hundreds of years for the ship to reach its destination.
The clones of Six criminals are chosen as the ship’s crew in exchange for their freedom after the mission is over. Each time a clone dies, another version of it wakes up.
When Maria Arena and the others wake up, they find the crew’s previous version brutally murdered. One of them killed the others, but who? They must find the murderer before he or she strikes again.
4. Wrong Place Wrong Time by Gillian McAllister
Jen was relieved when she finally saw her son Todd coming home at night way past his curfew, but then she saw him viciously stab someone to death.
Her son gets arrested and his life is ruined forever. That night, when she goes to sleep, she wakes up one day before the murder. Each morning, she finds herself further into the past, days, weeks, and even years.
She must find the reason for Todd’s crime before its too late and prevent it from ever happening.
5. Lost in Time by Albert G. Riddle
Sam’s wife has been murdered, and he & his daughter Adeline are the prime suspects. Every evidence points at them, so to save his daughter, he confesses to the crime.
He’s exiled 200 million years in the past to live the rest of his life away from humanity. But, Adeline is hell-bent on not losing her father after already having lost her mother.
6. The Shining Girls by Lauren Beukes
Harper Curtis is a time-traveling serial killer. No one has ever even come close to catching him as he always escapes to another time after killing his victims.
Until one of his victims survives. Kirby was meant to die at his hands but somehow survives. Hell-bent on catching him, she joins hands with a reporter and starts tracking his steps in time.
7. The City & the City by China Mievelle
Inspector Tyador thought it would be just another murder case when a woman is found dead on the outskirts of the city of Beszel, but it soon leads him into the neighboring city of UI Qoma.
Some people want the two cities to become one, some want to destroy the other. As he investigates the woman’s secrets, he discovers secrets far beyond what he signed up for.
8. The Caves of Steel by Isaac Asimov
The story is set a millennium into the future where people have discovered hyperspace travel and have colonized many planets. Rich people living on these planets are called Spacers.
Elijah is a New York City detective living on an overpopulated Earth. When a Spacer is murdered, he is sent to the outer world to help solve the case. He also gets a robot named R. Daneel Olivaw as his partner who looks exactly like a human.
9. The Prefect by Alastair Reynolds
After a habitat along with its thousands of inhabitants is blown to pieces, Tom Dreyfus is tasked with solving the case.
At first, it seems like a pretty simple case but as he continues his investigation, he starts turning stones that powerful people would rather be left unturned. This case is much more than a simple murder…
10. Great North Road by Peter F. Hamilton
Detective Sid would love nothing more than to hand over his new case to someone else as it involves the most powerful family in the galaxy, The North Family.
A member of the North family has been murdered and it was done in the same manner as another murder one year ago.
Now, he must solve both cases while also making sure his life doesn’t get ruined along the way as he’s sure to make enemies, powerful ones at that.
11. Paradox Hotel by Rob Hart
Paradox is not an ordinary hotel. It is the nearest hotel to the timeport and super wealthy people stay here before their trip to the past.
January Cole works as security at Paradox and things get out of hand when she finds a dead body in room 526 that no one except her can see. How will she solve a murder that no one believes has even happened?
12. The Last Policeman by Ben H. Winters
Would you still go to your job if you knew the world would end in six months?
Asteroid 2011GV1 is headed straight toward Earth and there’s no way to prevent the collision. In a world where people have abandoned their jobs and are waiting to die, Detective Hank is investigating a murder.
He has a feeling that this is more than just a simple murder. The world will end in 6 months, can he solve the case before that?
13. When Gravity Fails by George Alec Effinger
Set in a time where people can modify their brains to change their personality or certain physical and mental functions, Marid Audrian is proud of the fact that he doesn’t have any chips in his brain.
He works as a private investigator and after one of his clients is murdered, his acquaintances start getting killed one by one. Now, he must work with the police to find the killer. But, first, he must undergo a modification…
Detective Kat Frank is paired to work with an artificial intelligence called Lock. Even though she trusts her instincts more than Lock’s logic, Lock is the only one who can help her when two missing person’s cold cases suddenly become active and it’s upto her to solve them.
With lives on the line, will Kat’s instinct and Lock’s logic be able to solve the case before its too late?
15. The Spare Man by Mary Robinette Kowal
Telsa Crane, a famous inventor, and a rich heiress, recently got married and is on her honeymoon on a spaceship, cruising between the Moon and Mars.
After a person is found dead, the idiot security suspects her husband and arrests him. With her honeymoon paused for the moment, she must solve the mystery and find the real murderer, with the help of her cute dog.
16. Asimov’s Mysteries by Isaac Asimov
This book is a collection of 13 short stories by the famous Sci-Fi author Isaac Asimov.
The stories follow detective partners Davenport and Dr. Wendell as they work together to solve crimes.
17. Alex Benedict Series by Jack McDevitt
Over 200 years ago, humans were at war with the much more advanced race Ashiyyur. The humans won the war because of the military genius Christopher Sim who formed a team with a group of misfits and fought against the much powerful enemies.
In the present day, the two races have been at peace ever since the war ended. Christopher Sim is hailed as a hero, but Alex Benedict finds evidence that the history has been tempered with and things didn’t happen as the world believes.
18. The Rig by Roger Levy
The Rig is set in a far future where humanity has spread far across the galaxy and everyone is connected using the social media platform called AfterLife. It is a powerful system that can resurrect people using the neurids that are implanted in every human.
The story follows many characters including a reporter following a string of murders, two young friends, a police officer, and an engineer working on the planet Bleak.
19. The Disappeared by Kristine Kathryn Rusch
According to the treaty between humans and aliens, humans must follow alien laws on an alien planet. But their laws can often be cruel.
Miles Flint works as a Retrieval Artist, people whose job is to hunt down criminals wanted for breaking alien laws. He finds himself involved in a mysterious case when a stolen spacecraft is found full of dead bodies, two human children are kidnapped, and a wanted woman is on the run.
His job says to hand over the children and the woman to the aliens but should he really be enforcing such unjust laws?
20. Station Eternity by Mur Lafferty
Death always follows Mallory. As far as she can remember, she’s always found herself in the middle of some murder mystery when people around her die
When she decides to take refuge at an alien space station, she thinks she’s finally away from murders but soon the station starts taking in more human guests.
Once again, she finds herself involved in a murder mystery when aliens and humans alike start dying. She must find the murderer before the list of victims grows even further.
21. The Intuitionist by Colson Whitehead
Two types of people work at the Department of Elevator Inspectors: the Empiricists, who focus on the mechanics and the structure of the machine, and the Intuitionists, who use meditation and instincts rather than science.
Lila Watson is the best Intuitionist in the department but after an elevator crashes during her watch, she’s blamed for the failure because of the feud between the two factions. While trying to clear her name, she unravels a great secret that changes her life itself.
22. Superposition Series by David Walton
Jacob’s life takes a weird turn when his old friend Brian shows up at his house with a gun, talking about some mysterious alien intelligence. Not long after that, Brian is found dead and he’s the main suspect.
He soon realizes that everything Brian said that night might just be true and if it is, he must prove his innocence before the creature kills him and his family as well.
23. The Automatic Detective by A. Lee Martinez
Mack Megaton is a strong robot created to bring humans to their knees, but he has no interest in taking over the world. He just wants to prove he’s much more than just a machine and finally earn his citizenship.
When his neighbors get kidnapped, he takes it upon himself to save them and sets off on an incredible journey that soon becomes a fight for the survival of the entire empire.
This is an amazing robot hard-boiled detective novel with a noir sci-fi theme.
24. Dayworld by Philip Jose Farmer
The story is set in a future where people are only allowed to live one day a week due to overpopulation, the rest of the week, everyone sleeps in suspended animation.
But, there is a secret group of people who stay awake every day. These people are called Immers and Jeff is one of them. He switches bodies and lives a different life every day. Such a thing can make a man go crazy and it does.
Jeff suffers from multiple personality disorder and to protect the identity of the rest of the Immers, they decide to kill him. But, he has an escape plan.
25. Polar City Blues by Katherine Kerr
After an alien diplomat from the Confederation Embassy is found dead with his mouth slit ear to ear, Police Chief Al Bates is on the case to find the murderer who’se also killed many others using the same method.
Jack Mulligan, a baseball player with psychic abilities, also gets involved in the case when the police call on him for help.
26. The Cold Between by Elizabeth Bonesteel
Elena Shaw meets Treiko at a bar and spends the night with him. The very next day, her crewmate Danny is found dead and Treiko is the main suspect, but, how could he be the killer when he was with her the entire night?
While trying to find the real killer on the loose, she discovers that Danny’s murder is related to a 25-year-old tragedy and a deadly secret the Central Government has been keeping all this time.
With the authorities after them, will they be able to prove Treiko’s innocence and also save humanity?