The Best Sci-Fi Horror Audiobooks of All Time

Sci-fi and horror are two genres that just make sense together. Swap haunted mansions for abandoned space ships, ghosts for virus-created zombies and experiments gone wrong, and the eerie darkness of the woods for the deep vastness of space, and it’s easy to see why these two genres make for a classic, thrilling combination. Here are our picks for some of the best sci-fi horror audiobooks of all time.

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Frankenstein

Mary Shelley’s pioneering novel—​​in which a fearsome monster is the result of a science experiment gone awry—is perhaps the earliest entry into the genre, and Dan Stevens (Downton Abbey) lends gravitas to this classic in his performance.

The Andromeda Strain

Many sci-fi horror listens deal with killer or unpredictable viruses set loose upon society. In Michael Crichton’s classic, that strange illness comes directly from space when a military probe crash lands on Earth, bringing back something not of this world.

I Am Legend

In Richard Matheson's sci-fi horror, a sole survivor must contend with the aftermath of a deadly virus, which turns the infected into horrifying, vampire-like creatures who roam the remains of the Earth. This classic novel has been adapted into the films The Last Man on Earth (1964), The Omega Man (1971), and I Am Legend (2007).

The Luminous Dead

Cave-diving is already ripe for horror: the claustrophobia, the darkness. Now, do it on a distant planet, potentially under mind control by a malevolent force—and you have Caitlin Starling’s The Luminous Dead. Skilfully narrated by Adenrele Ojo, it’s perfect for fans of The Martian and Annihilation.

The Girl with All the Gifts

M.R. Carey’s novel is horror with heart. The Girl with All the Gifts presents an interesting new take on the zombie plague: both in its origins and in how it affects young children.

Gideon the Ninth

Necromancers, ghosts, gothic castles, space—Tamsyn Muir’s Locked Tomb Trilogy is as genre-bending as it gets. Come for the laughs and sword fights; stay for the corpses, sentient skeleton battles, and mythology.

Alien III

Alien is one of the best examples of sci-fi horror films—and these audio adaptations are the next best way to experience the horrors of space and the fearsome creatures that inhabit it. In Alien III, William Gibson’s famous lost script comes to life via acclaimed audio director Dirk Maggs.

Who Goes There?

John W. Campbell’s classic novella—about a shocking discovery made by a research team in the remote arctic—was the inspiration for John Carpenter’s acclaimed horror film, The Thing.

Leviathan Wakes

Though the bulk of James S. A. Corey's best-selling series The Expanse is firmly sci-fi in nature, the antagonist—an infectious remnant of an ancient alien civilization known as the protomolecule—is as devastating and horrifying as some of the best horror tropes out there.

Salvation Day

Reopening an abandoned spacecraft on which a deadly virus killed everyone aboard a decade earlier—what could go wrong? Kali Wallace’s near-future thriller is as eerie and claustrophobic as sci-fi horror comes.

We Have Always Been Here

A scientific psychological thriller set during a survey mission to a remote planet, Lena Nguyen’s debut will have you questioning humans and androids alike. When a radiation storm hits, cutting off all communication, that’s when the terrors begin for the crew of the Deucalion.

We Cast a Shadow

An electrifying dystopian novel with echoes of Get Out, Maurice Carlo Ruffin’s debut imagines a future in which the wealthy can undergo “demelanization” treatments to appear more white and escape the racism that plagues society. It’s a frightening future made all the more unsettling by its grounding in the present.

Jeff Wayne's The War of The Worlds: The Musical Drama

When the original War of the Worlds was first broadcast by radio, it sounded so real and genuinely terrifying that it caused a mass panic of listeners believing that Martians had actually invaded Earth. In Jeff Wayne’s dramatic, musical adaptation, we can relive the panic, terror, and wonder of the classic.

Annihilation

Venture into Area X, where 11 brave groups of explorers have ventured only to return maimed, changed, or not at all. Jeff VanderMeer’s series, Southern Reach Trilogy, will blur your sense of reality and make you question the alien nature of language itself.

Frankenstein

Mary Shelley’s pioneering novel—​​in which a fearsome monster is the result of a science experiment gone awry—is perhaps the earliest entry into the genre, and Dan Stevens (Downton Abbey) lends gravitas to this classic in his performance.

The Andromeda Strain

Many sci-fi horror listens deal with killer or unpredictable viruses set loose upon society. In Michael Crichton’s classic, that strange illness comes directly from space when a military probe crash lands on Earth, bringing back something not of this world.

I Am Legend

In Richard Matheson's sci-fi horror, a sole survivor must contend with the aftermath of a deadly virus, which turns the infected into horrifying, vampire-like creatures who roam the remains of the Earth. This classic novel has been adapted into the films The Last Man on Earth (1964), The Omega Man (1971), and I Am Legend (2007).

The Luminous Dead

Cave-diving is already ripe for horror: the claustrophobia, the darkness. Now, do it on a distant planet, potentially under mind control by a malevolent force—and you have Caitlin Starling’s The Luminous Dead. Skilfully narrated by Adenrele Ojo, it’s perfect for fans of The Martian and Annihilation.

The Girl with All the Gifts

M.R. Carey’s novel is horror with heart. The Girl with All the Gifts presents an interesting new take on the zombie plague: both in its origins and in how it affects young children.

Gideon the Ninth

Necromancers, ghosts, gothic castles, space—Tamsyn Muir’s Locked Tomb Trilogy is as genre-bending as it gets. Come for the laughs and sword fights; stay for the corpses, sentient skeleton battles, and mythology.

Alien III

Alien is one of the best examples of sci-fi horror films—and these audio adaptations are the next best way to experience the horrors of space and the fearsome creatures that inhabit it. In Alien III, William Gibson’s famous lost script comes to life via acclaimed audio director Dirk Maggs.

Who Goes There?

John W. Campbell’s classic novella—about a shocking discovery made by a research team in the remote arctic—was the inspiration for John Carpenter’s acclaimed horror film, The Thing.

Leviathan Wakes

Though the bulk of James S. A. Corey's best-selling series The Expanse is firmly sci-fi in nature, the antagonist—an infectious remnant of an ancient alien civilization known as the protomolecule—is as devastating and horrifying as some of the best horror tropes out there.

Salvation Day

Reopening an abandoned spacecraft on which a deadly virus killed everyone aboard a decade earlier—what could go wrong? Kali Wallace’s near-future thriller is as eerie and claustrophobic as sci-fi horror comes.

We Have Always Been Here

A scientific psychological thriller set during a survey mission to a remote planet, Lena Nguyen’s debut will have you questioning humans and androids alike. When a radiation storm hits, cutting off all communication, that’s when the terrors begin for the crew of the Deucalion.

We Cast a Shadow

An electrifying dystopian novel with echoes of Get Out, Maurice Carlo Ruffin’s debut imagines a future in which the wealthy can undergo “demelanization” treatments to appear more white and escape the racism that plagues society. It’s a frightening future made all the more unsettling by its grounding in the present.

Jeff Wayne's The War of The Worlds: The Musical Drama

When the original War of the Worlds was first broadcast by radio, it sounded so real and genuinely terrifying that it caused a mass panic of listeners believing that Martians had actually invaded Earth. In Jeff Wayne’s dramatic, musical adaptation, we can relive the panic, terror, and wonder of the classic.

Annihilation

Venture into Area X, where 11 brave groups of explorers have ventured only to return maimed, changed, or not at all. Jeff VanderMeer’s series, Southern Reach Trilogy, will blur your sense of reality and make you question the alien nature of language itself.

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