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  1. Parable of the Talents

    by Octavia E. Butler
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟡⚪️
    Affinity: 🟢🟢🟢🟢
    Readership: Eclectic

    Parable of the Talents is told from the points of view of Lauren Oya Olamina and her daughter Larkin Olamina/Asha Vere. The novel consists of journal entries by Lauren and passages by Asha Vere. Four years after the events of the previous novel ,Parable of the Sower, , Lauren has founded a new religious community called Acorn, which is centered around her religion Earthseed, which is predicated around the belief that humanity's destiny is to travel beyond Earth and live on other planets in order for humanity to reach adulthood. The novel is set against the backdrop of a dystopian … (Wikipedia)

  2. Parable of the Sower

    by Octavia E. Butler
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟡⚪️
    Affinity: 🟢🟢🟢🟢
    Readership: Eclectic

    This highly acclaimed post-apocalyptic novel of hope and terror from award-winning author Octavia E. Butler "pairs well with ,1984 ,or ,The Handmaid's Tale," (John Green, ,New York Times,)--now with a new foreword by N. K. Jemisin. When global climate change and economic crises lead to social chaos in the early 2020s, California becomes full of dangers, from pervasive water shortage to masses of vagabonds who will do anything to live to see another day. Fifteen-year-old Lauren Olamina lives inside a gated community with her preacher father, family, and neighbors, sheltered from the surrounding anarchy. In a society where any vulnerability … (Barnes & Noble)

  3. Adulthood Rites

    by Octavia E. Butler
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟡⚪️
    Affinity: 🟢🟢🟢🟢
    Readership: Very niche

    In this sequel to Dawn, Lilith Iyapo has given birth to what looks like a normal human boy named Akin. But Akin actually has five parents: a male and female human, a male and female Oankali, and a sexless Ooloi. The Oankali and Ooloi are part of an alien race that rescued humanity from a devastating nuclear war, but the price they exact is a high one the aliens are compelled to genetically merge their species with other races, drastically altering both in the process. On a rehabilitated Earth, this "new" race is emerging through human/Oankali/Ooloi mating, but there are … (Goodreads)

  4. Dawn

    by Octavia E. Butler
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟡⚪️
    Affinity: 🟢🟢🟢🟢
    Readership: Eclectic

    Lilith Iyapo has just lost her husband and son when atomic fire consumes Earth—the last stage of the planet’s final war. Hundreds of years later Lilith awakes, deep in the hold of a massive alien spacecraft piloted by the Oankali—who arrived just in time to save humanity from extinction. They have kept Lilith and other survivors asleep for centuries, as they learned whatever they could about Earth. Now it is time for Lilith to lead them back to her home world, but life among the Oankali on the newly resettled planet will be nothing like it was before. The Oankali … (Goodreads)

  5. Imago

    by Octavia E. Butler
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟡⚪️
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    Readership: Very niche

    The stunning conclusion to a postapocalyptic trilogy about an alien species merging with humans—from “one of science fiction’s finest writers” (TheNew York Times). Human and Oankali have been mating since the aliens first came to Earth to rescue the few survivors of an annihilating nuclear war. The Oankali began a massive breeding project, guided by the ooloi, a sexless subspecies capable of manipulating DNA, in the hope of eventually creating a perfect starfaring race. Jodahs is supposed to be just another hybrid of human and Oankali, but as he begins his transformation to adulthood he finds himself becoming ooloi—the first … (Goodreads)

  6. Kindred

    by Octavia E. Butler
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟡⚪️
    Affinity: 🟢🟢🟢⚪️
    Readership: Somewhat known

    Kindred scholars have noted that the novel's chapter headings suggest something "elemental, apocalyptic, archetypal about the events in the narrative," thus giving the impression that the main characters are participating in matters greater than their personal experiences. ,, ,, Prologue Dana wakes up in the hospital with her arm amputated. Police deputies question her about the circumstances surrounding the loss of her arm and ask her whether her husband Kevin, a white man, beats her. Dana tells them that it was an accident and that Kevin is not to blame. When Kevin visits her, they are both afraid of telling … (Wikipedia)

  7. The Obelisk Gate

    by N.K. Jemisin
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟡⚪️
    Affinity: 🟢🟢⚪️⚪️
    Readership: Somewhat known

    The story is told primarily from the perspectives of Essun, a powerful orogene driven out of her home at the beginning of the first book, and Nassun, her adolescent daughter. Schaffa, Essun's former Guardian, awakens underwater after Essun's devastating counterattack during the climax of ,The Fifth Season, . He is about to drown when, out of desperation, he allows the entity (manifested as a force of pure rage) that powers his and the other Guardians' abilities to take control of his body for a brief period. Though he is saved from death, the resulting brain damage leaves him with profound … (Wikipedia)

  8. The Stone Sky

    by N.K. Jemisin
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟡⚪️
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    Readership: Eclectic

    Following the events of ,The Obelisk Gate, , the former inhabitants of Castrima-under are moving north after damage by rival comm Rennanis has compromised the mechanisms of the geode and made it uninhabitable. Essun, who has been in a coma since opening the Obelisk Gate, awakens to find that her arm has turned to stone as a consequence of the massive magical energies of the Gate. She is nursed back to health, and finds that the Moon is approaching the closest point in its long, elliptical orbit, meaning that she has only a short time to return it to a … (Wikipedia)

  9. The Fifth Season

    by N.K. Jemisin
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟡⚪️
    Affinity: 🟢🟡⚪️⚪️
    Readership: Somewhat known

    In a prologue, an extraordinarily powerful orogene discusses the sad state of the world and laments the oppression of his race. He then uses his enormous power to fracture the entire continent along its length, threatening to cause the worst Fifth Season in recorded history. The story then follows three female orogenes across the Stillness from different time periods: Essun, Damaya, and Syenite. Essun is a middle-aged woman with two young children living in a small southern comm named Tirimo. Secretly, she is an orogene, a human with the ability to manipulate earth and stone by absorbing or redirecting heat … (Wikipedia)

  10. The Dispossessed

    by Ursula K. Le Guin
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟢🟢
    Affinity: 🟢🟡⚪️⚪️
    Readership: Eclectic

    Librarian note: Alternate cover edition of ISBN ,9780061054884,. Shevek, a brilliant physicist, decides to take action. He will seek answers, question the unquestionable, and attempt to tear down the walls of hatred that have isolated his planet of anarchists from the rest of the civilized universe. To do this dangerous task will mean giving up his family and possibly his life—Shevek must make the unprecedented journey to the utopian mother planet, Urras, to challenge the complex structures of life and living, and ignite the fires of change. … (Goodreads)

  11. Wild Seed

    by Octavia E. Butler
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟡⚪️
    Affinity: 🟢🟢🟢⚪️
    Readership: Very niche

    Wild Seed is the story of two immortal Africans named Doro and Anyanwu. Doro is a spirit who can take over other people's bodies, killing anyone and anything in his path, while Anyanwu is a woman with healing powers who can transform herself into any human or animal. When they meet, Doro senses Anyanwu's abilities and wants to add her to one of his seed villages in the New World, where he breeds super humans. Doro convinces Anyanwu to travel with him to America by telling her he will give her children she will never have to watch die. Although … (Wikipedia)

  12. Invisible Man

    by Ralph Ellison
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟢🟡
    Affinity: 🟢⚪️⚪️⚪️
    Readership: Somewhat known

    The narrator, an unnamed black man, begins by describing his living conditions: an underground room wired with hundreds of electric lights, operated by power stolen from the city's electric grid. He reflects on the various ways in which he has experienced social invisibility during his life and begins to tell his story, returning to his teenage years. The narrator lives in a small Southern town and, upon graduating from high school, wins a scholarship to an all-black college . However, to receive it, he must first take part in a brutal, humiliating battle royal for the entertainment of the town's … (Wikipedia)

  13. Saga, Volume 3

    by Brian K. Vaughan
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟡⚪️
    Affinity: 🟢⚪️⚪️⚪️
    Readership: Eclectic

    The Eisner, Harvey, and Hugo Award-winning phenomenon continues, as new parents Marko and Alana travel to an alien world to visit their hero, while the family's pursuers finally close in on their targets. … (Barnes & Noble)

  14. Bloodchild and Other Stories

    by Octavia E. Butler
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟡⚪️
    Affinity: 🟢🟢🟡⚪️
    Readership: Very niche

    A perfect introduction for new readers and a must-have for avid fans, this New York Times Notable Book includes "Bloodchild," winner of both the Hugo and the Nebula awards and "Speech Sounds," winner of the Hugo Award. Appearing in print for the first time, "Amnesty" is a story of a woman named Noah who works to negotiate the tense and co-dependent relationship between humans and a species of invaders. Also new to this collection is "The Book of Martha" which asks: What would you do if God granted you the ability—and responsibility—to save humanity from itself? Like all of Octavia … (Goodreads)

  15. Sula

    by Toni Morrison
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟢🟡
    Affinity: 🟢🟡⚪️⚪️
    Readership: Eclectic

    The novel begins when the construction of a golf course is announced, the site being the destroyed remnants of what used to be the Bottom. The Bottom is a black neighborhood on the hill above the fictional town of Medallion, Ohio . In the first section of the novel, the origin story of the Bottom is revealed as well as how it got its name: a white farmer promised freedom and a piece of Bottom land to his slave if he would perform some difficult chores for him. Upon completion, the farmer regrets his end of the bargain. Freedom was … (Wikipedia)

  16. Their Eyes Were Watching God

    by Zora Neale Hurston
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟢🟡
    Affinity: 🟢⚪️⚪️⚪️
    Readership: Fairly popular

    Fair and long-legged, independent and articulate, Janie Crawford sets out to be her own person -- no mean feat for a black woman in the '30s. Janie's quest for identity takes her through three marriages and into a journey back to her roots. … (Goodreads)

  17. A Wizard of Earthsea

    by Ursula K. Le Guin
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟢🟡
    Affinity: 🟢⚪️⚪️⚪️
    Readership: Fairly popular

    Ged, the greatest sorcerer in all Earthsea, was called Sparrowhawk in his reckless youth. Hungry for power and knowledge, Sparrowhawk tampered with long-held secrets and loosed a terrible shadow upon the world. This is the tale of his testing, how he mastered the mighty words of power, tamed an ancient dragon, and crossed death's threshold to restore the balance. … (Goodreads)

  18. Fledgling

    by Octavia E. Butler
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟡⚪️
    Affinity: 🟢🟢⚪️⚪️
    Readership: Very niche

    The novel tells the story of Shori, a 53-year-old member of the Ina species, who appears to be a ten-year-old African-American girl. The Ina are nocturnal, long-lived, and derive sustenance by drinking human blood. Though they are physically superior to humans, both in strength and ability to heal from injury, the Ina depend on humans to survive. Therefore, their relationships are symbiotic, with the Ina's venom providing significant boost to their humans' immune systems and extending their lives up to 200 years. However, withdrawal from this venom will also lead to the human's death. The story opens as Shori awakens … (Wikipedia)

  19. The Left Hand of Darkness

    by Ursula K. Le Guin
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟢🟡
    Affinity: 🟢⚪️⚪️⚪️
    Readership: Somewhat known
  20. Giovanni's Room

    by James Baldwin
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟢🟢
    Affinity: 🟢⚪️⚪️⚪️
    Readership: Eclectic

    David, a young American man whose girlfriend has gone off to Spain to contemplate marriage, is left alone in Paris and begins an affair with an Italian man, Giovanni. The entire story is narrated by David during "the night which is leading me to the most terrible morning of my life," when Giovanni will be executed. Baldwin tackles social isolation, gender and sexual identity crisis, as well as conflicts of masculinity within this story of a young bisexual man navigating the public sphere in a society that rejects a core aspect of his sexuality. David, in the South of France, … (Wikipedia)