Best Ursula K. Le Guin Books
Book Lists

Best Ursula K. Le Guin Books Ranked

Ursula Le Guin was born in Berkeley, California, in 1929 and wrote speculative fiction and science fiction novels and short stories, incorporating Taoism, feminism, and even the writings of Carl Jung into her stories. 

She was the first woman to win both the Hugo and Nebula awards for her books, and one of the things she is known for is the theme of cultural anthropology. Her most famous works include her Earthsea series and her stories centered around the Hainish universe. During her career, she wrote a total of 20 novels and more than 100 short stories, winning not only accolades but numerous awards as well. She died in 2018 at the age of 88. 

Below are some of her best works.

Listen on Audible Plus

Try Audible Premium Plus and Get Up to Two Free Audiobooks

Try Free Trial
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.

29. The Beginning Place

The Beginning Place: A Novel
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.103.543.383.67
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

In the Beginning Place, or Mountaintown, young Irena feels threatened when newcomer Hugh arrives, seeking the same ideal life that Irena did when she first arrived. Now, they must work together to get rid of an enemy who threatens their lifestyle, and along the way, they start to fall in love.


28. Malafrena

Malafrena: A Library of America eBook Classic
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.203.533.483.74
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

It’s the early 1800s, and Itale forsakes Malafrena Valley, which he was supposed to inherit. He finds himself in Krasnoy with Piera, even though he’s never thought much about love. This is their story, and it is truly unforgettable.


27. Rocannon’s World

Rocannon's World
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.303.763.373.81
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

The first book in the Hainish Cycle series, it tells about a world inhabited by three different humanoid races and of Rocannon, who is part of that world but now is charged with freeing it when unwanted visitors arrive. He then finds that even while he fights, legends grow all around him, making for an unforgettable journey.


26. Orsinian Tales

Orsinian Tales: A Library of America eBook Classic
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.303.673.503.82
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

In Orsinia, life is harsh and dreams are practically nonexistent. There are powerful forces set on destroying this life, whatever it’s worth, but in this land of medieval forests and stonewalled cities, it just might be possible for life to not only remain but to grow and thrive as well.


25. Planet of Exile

Planet of Exile / Mankind Under the Leash (Ace Double G-597)
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.303.713.493.83
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

The second book of the Hainish Cycle series, it is the story of an earth colony called Landin, which has been stranded on Werel for 10 years, or 600 terrestrial years. The earthmen have the same neighbors every winter, but the two peoples do not get along. Still, they find themselves with a common enemy, but is it enough to make life on Werel better for everyone?


24. The Eye of the Heron

The Eye of the Heron: A Novel
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.403.763.453.87
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

In a world inhabited by farmers and city-dwellers, AKA bosses, life is not as peaceful as it seems. When the farmers decide to form their own colony to get away from the bosses, the daughter of one of those bosses, named Luz, might decide to go with them.


23. City of Illusions

City of Illusions
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.303.893.573.92
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

Book number three in the Hainish Cycle series, it involves a man who cannot remember his past and who is taken in by the forest people. One day, he is ready to travel to the world he thinks he left behind, but even though he finds his true self, that world is fraught with danger.


22. Gifts

Gifts (Annals of the Western Shore Book 1)
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.403.723.673.93
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

In a place called the Uplands, all the different clans have amazing but very powerful gifts. They can literally change other people’s lives with those gifts, which is why two people – one girl and one boy – decide not to use their gifts so that no one is hurt.


21. Changing Planes

Changing Planes
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.203.843.803.95
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

When Sita misses her flight, she changes planes and finds herself visiting more than a dozen societies that aren’t found on Earth. They can do things other societies can’t, such as go holiday shopping all year long, making Sita’s travels very interesting indeed.


20. Lavinia

Lavinia
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.403.813.834.01
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

Lavinia’s mother wants her to marry Turnus, but she learns through omens and prophecies that this will turn out bad. Instead, she takes her life into her own hands and tells us the story of her life so we can understand her better.


19. The Telling

The Telling (Hainish Cycle Book 8)
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.403.923.834.05
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

Part of the Hainish Cycle series, it’s the story of Sutty, who is living in a world overtaken by too much technology. When she learns of a group of people living out in the wilderness, she decides to join them, but it ends up putting her heart, mind, and soul into more danger than she imagined.


18. Always Coming Home

Always Coming Home (California Fiction)
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.304.033.894.07
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

Mixing story, poem, artwork, and music, this is the story of the people called the Kesh, who live very peaceful lives. Though it is the tale of a far-away land and people, readers will certainly recognize someone they know in the descriptions of the people who live there.


17. Very Far Away From Anywhere Else

Very Far Away from Anywhere Else
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.404.133.794.11
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

This is the story of 17-year-old Owen, who thinks he knows just what to do with his life until he meets Natalie, and suddenly he starts to realize he knows very little about how his life should proceed. A very inspiring coming-of-age story.


16. Tehanu

Tehanu: Book Four (The Earthsea Cycle Series 4)
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.603.943.814.12
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

Part of the Earthsea Cycle series, it is the story of a couple who have an on-again, off-again relationship until they get older and must come together to help a child who is both physically and emotionally scarred.


15. The Word for World Is Forest

The Word for World is Forest
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.603.993.764.12
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

Set in the 24th century, this is the fifth book in the Hainish Cycle series and centers around humans who have learned interstellar travel from the Hainish and Terran colonists who have taken over a planet named Athshe. It is about tyranny, war, and resistance, and it is an interesting part of this series.


14. A Wizard of Earthsea

A Wizard of Earthsea (The Earthsea Cycle Series Book 1)
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.403.993.984.12
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

Book number one in the Earthsea Cycle series tells the story of Ged, also known as Sparrowhawk, who is a great sorcerer but who was responsible for a terrible power being loose on the land. In this book, he masters words of power, comes face-to-face with death itself, and tames an ancient dragon to restore balance to the land.


13. A Fisherman of the Inland Sea

A Fisherman of the Inland Sea: Stories
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.604.013.844.15
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

Part of the Hainish Cycle series, this story shows off Le Guin’s magical writing ability, which includes being able to write both light and dark short stories, and everything from philosophical musings to accurate descriptions of various cultures, and they all come together in this book.


12. Four Ways to Forgiveness

Four Ways to Forgiveness: Stories
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.404.193.914.17
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

This is book number seven in the Hainish Cycle series and tells the story of twin planets Werel and Yeowe, which include characters who are as complex and interesting as any of the people you know in your real life. 


11. Voices

Voices (Annals of the Western Shore Book 2)
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.603.904.004.17
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

This is the story of a town called Ansul, which has been ruled by people who have banned reading and writing. But now, a poet and his wife have arrived to try and change things, but will they be successful?


10. The Left Hand of Darkness

The Left Hand of Darkness: 50th Anniversary Edition (Ace Science Fiction)
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.404.084.054.18
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

Called a “groundbreaking work of science fiction,” this is the story of a human in an alien world where people can actually change their gender. When the human tries to include this world in an intergalactic civilization, interesting things happen.


9. The Wind’s Twelve Quarters

The Wind's Twelve Quarters: Stories
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.604.063.944.20
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

This book contains 17 of Le Guin’s best works, and the stories combine wizardry, cloning, fantasy, and lots of adventures. It gives Le Guin fans lots to be happy about.


8. The Lathe of Heaven

The Lathe of Heaven
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.504.114.014.21
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

In a futuristic world, George Orr wakes up with the ability to change reality with his dreams. He begins to see a psychiatrist who, unfortunately, tries to take that power away from him instead of teaching him how to deal with it.


7. Powers

Powers (Annals of the Western Shore Book 3)
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.604.024.054.22
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

A young man named Gav can remember a page in a book for a long time and even sees the future. But when tragedy strikes, he leaves the only world he’s ever known, but he still cannot escape his unusual powers.


6. The Tombs of Atuan

The Tombs of Atuan (The Earthsea Cycle Series Book 2)
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.604.084.014.23
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

Arha has been named priestess and guardian over the tombs of Atuan, but everything else is taken away from her. Enter a wizard named Ged, and the two of them set off to get back everything she’s lost.


5. The Farthest Shore

The Farthest Shore (The Earthsea Cycle Series Book 3)
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.604.114.004.24
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

When darkness threatens to overtake Earthsea, Ged Sparrowhawk and Prince Arren set off together to change its course so that the world will be right again.


4. The Other Wind

The Other Wind (The Earthsea Cycle Series Book 6)
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.704.143.964.27
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

This is book number six in the Earthsea Cycle series. A sorcerer named Alder works with a king to save Earthsea, despite all of the odds against them. This is also the final book in this particular series, so all of your questions will be answered.


3. The Dispossessed

The Dispossessed (Hainish Cycle)
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.504.204.144.28
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

Shevek is a physicist who decides to ride the world of hatred and bring civilization back to it. He will do this even though he may lose his family and even his life in the process, but he considers it to be worth it.


2. Tales From Earthsea

Tales from Earthsea (The Earthsea Cycle Series Book 5)
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.704.273.924.30
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

This book encompasses a total of five stories about Earthsea, including two classic stories, two original tales, and a novella that is brand-new, as well as maps and more information about Earthsea to help you get more out of the stories.


1. The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas

The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas: A Story (A Wind's Twelve Quarters Story)
Check Price
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
AmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
4.604.394.274.42
Average Star Ratings Out of 5

Overview

This is one of Le Guin’s short stories that centers around a peaceful kingdom that cannot tolerate all of the cruelty that is at the base of its happiness. It is one of the stories that earned her the prestigious Hugo Award for best short story.


Complete Rankings for Ursula K. Le Guin Books

RankBook TitleAmazonGoodreadsLibraryThingsOverall
1The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas4.604.394.274.42
2Tales from Earthsea4.704.273.924.30
3The Dispossessed4.504.204.144.28
4The Other Wind4.704.143.964.27
5The Farthest Shore4.604.114.004.24
6The Tombs of Atuan4.604.084.014.23
7Powers4.604.024.054.22
8The Lathe of Heaven4.504.114.014.21
9The Wind’s Twelve Quarters4.604.063.944.20
10The Left Hand of Darkness4.404.084.054.18
11Four Ways to Forgiveness4.404.193.914.17
12Voices4.603.904.004.17
13A Fisherman of the Inland Sea4.604.013.844.15
14A Wizard of Earthsea4.403.993.984.12
15Tehanu4.603.943.814.12
16The Word for World Is Forest4.603.993.764.12
17Very Far Away from Anywhere Else4.404.133.794.11
18Always Coming Home4.304.033.894.07
19The Telling4.403.923.834.05
20Lavinia4.403.813.834.01
21Changing Planes4.203.843.803.95
22Gifts4.403.723.673.93
23City of Illusions4.303.893.573.92
24The Eye of the Heron4.403.763.453.87
25Planet of Exile4.303.713.493.83
26Orsinian Tales4.303.673.503.82
27Rocannon’s World4.303.763.373.81
28Malafrena4.203.533.483.74
29The Beginning Place4.103.543.383.67

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *