Best Military Sci-fi Novels

Updated Fall 2018

According to Wikipedia, Military science fiction is a subgenre of science fiction that features the use of science fiction technology, mainly weapons, for military purposes and usually principal characters that are members of a military organization involved in military activity; occurring sometimes in outer space or on a different planet or planets. Here are our picks for the top 10 Military Sci-fi books.


On Basilisk Station by David Weber

Shelfbuzz Score: 9.5 (out of 10)

Genre(s): Military Sci-fi, Free

INTRODUCING HONOR HARRINGTON. Having made him look a fool, she’s been exiled to Basilisk Station in disgrace and set up for ruin by a superior who hates her. Her demoralized crew blames her for their ship’s humiliating posting to an out-of-the-way picket station. The aborigines of the system’s only habitable planet are smoking homicide-inducing hallucinogens. Parliament isn’t sure it wants to keep the place; the major local industry is smuggling; the merchant cartels want her head; the star-conquering, so-called “Republic” of Haven is Up To Something; and Honor Harrington has a single, over-age… (more)



March Upcountry by David Weber

Shelfbuzz Score: 9.2 (out of 10)

Genre(s): Military Sci-fi

THE ROYAL BRAT IS IN TROUBLE Roger Ramius Sergei Chiang MacClintock didn’t understand. He was young, handsome, athletic, an excellent dresser, and third in line for the Throne of Man… so why wouldn’t anyone at Court trust him. Why wouldn’t even his own mother, the Empress, explain why they didn’t trust him Or why the very mention of his father’s name was forbidden at Court Or why his mother had decided to pack him off to a backwater planet aboard what was little more than a tramp freighter to represent her at a local political event better suited to a… (more)



Terms of Enlistment by Marko Kloos

Shelfbuzz Score: 9 (out of 10)

Genre(s): Military Sci-fi

The year is 2108, and the North American Commonwealth is bursting at the seams. For welfare rats like Andrew Grayson, there are only two ways out of the crime-ridden and filthy welfare tenements, where youre restricted to two thousand calories of badly flavored soy every day:You can hope to win the lottery and draw a ticket on a colony ship settling off-world, or you can join the service.With the colony lottery a pipe dream, Andrew chooses to enlist in the armed forces for a shot at real food, a retirement bonus, and maybe a ticket off… (more)



Foundation by Isaac Asimov

Shelfbuzz Score: 9 (out of 10)

Genre(s): Military Sci-fi

The story of our future begins with the Foundation. Nominated as one of America’s best-loved novels by PBS’s The Great American Read For twelve thousand years the Galactic Empire has ruled supreme. Now it is dying. Only Hari Seldon, creator of the revolutionary science of psychohistory, can see into the future — a dark age of ignorance, barbarism, and warfare that will last thirty thousand years. To preserve knowledge and save humanity, Seldon gathers the best minds in the Empire — both scientists and scholars — and brings them to a bleak planet at the edge of the galaxy to serve as… (more)



A Hymn Before Battle by John Ringo

Shelfbuzz Score: 8.7 (out of 10)

Genre(s): Military Sci-fi, Free

With the Earth in the path of the rapacious Posleen, the peaceful and friendly races of the Galactic Federation offer their resources to help the backward Terrans–for a price.Humanity now has three worlds to defend.As Earths armies rush into battle and special operations units scout alien worlds, the humans begin to learn a valuable lesson: You can protect yourself from your enemies, but may the Lord save you from your allies… (more)



Shards of Honor by Lois McMaster Bujold

Shelfbuzz Score: 8.7 (out of 10)

Genre(s): Military Sci-fi

When Cordelia Naismith and her survey crew are attacked by a renegade group from Barrayar, she is taken prisoner by Aral Vorkosigan, commander of the Barrayan ship that has been taken over by an ambitious and ruthless crew member. Aral and Cordelia survive countless mishaps while their mutual admiration and even stronger feelings emerge. A science fiction romance by a Hugo and Nebula Award winning master. Bujold’s SHARDS OF HONOR is the first book in her SF universe to feature the Vorkosigan clan, followed by the Hugo award-winning BARRAYAR. The Nebula award-winning FALLING FREE precedes it by internal… (more)



Dorsai! by Gordon R. Dickson

Shelfbuzz Score: 8.7 (out of 10)

Genre(s): Military Sci-fi

On the planet Arcadia, a young man and woman and a swamp otter join together to haul the otter’s eleven hundred pound statue overland to meet the deadline of a prospective buyer from another planet… (more)



Live Free or Die by John Ringo

Shelfbuzz Score: 8.7 (out of 10)

Genre(s): Military Sci-fi

Will the People of Earth Bow Down to Alien Overlords — or Will They Live Free or Die? First Contact Was Friendly. When aliens trundled a gate to other worlds into the solar system, the world reacted with awe, hope and fear. But the first aliens to come through, the Glatun, were peaceful traders and the world breathed a sigh of relief. Who Controls the Orbitals, Controls the World. When the Horvath came through, they announced their ownership by dropping rocks on three cities and gutting them. Since then, they’ve held Terra as their own personal fiefdom. With their control of… (more)



Old Mans War by John Scalzi

Shelfbuzz Score: 8.5 (out of 10)

Genre(s): Military Sci-fi

John Perry did two things on his 75th birthday. First he visited his wife’s grave. Then he joined the army. The good news is that humanity finally made it into interstellar space. The bad news is that planets fit to live on are scarce-and aliens willing to fight for them are common. The universe, it turns out, is a hostile place. So: we fight. To defend Earth (a target for our new enemies, should we let them get close enough) and to stake our own claim to planetary real estate. Far from Earth, the war has gone on for… (more)



The Lost Fleet: Dauntless by Jack Campbell

Shelfbuzz Score: 7 (out of 10)

Genre(s): Military Sci-fi

Captain John “Black Jack” Geary’s legendary exploits are known to every schoolchild. Revered for his heroic “last stand” in the early days of the war, he was presumed dead. But a century later, Geary miraculously returns from survival hibernation and reluctantly takes command of the Alliance Fleet as it faces annihilation by the Syndic. Appalled by the hero-worship around him, Geary is nevertheless a man who will do his duty. And he knows that bringing the stolen Syndic hypernet key safely home is the Alliance’s one chance to win the war. But to do that, Geary will have to… (more)