Biopunk Science Fiction

Parasite book cover.Biopunk is a subgenre of science fiction that analyzes the implications of biotechnology. Often taking place in the future, biopunk novels cover topics such as human experimentation, totalitarian governments, megacorporations, synthetic biology, genetic manipulation, and the resulting effects on humans. This genre grew from another subgenre of science fiction called cyberpunk, which focuses on information technology.

Here are a few biopunk titles available to you from the JMRL catalog:

Parasite by Mira Grant – Genetically engineered tapeworms that protect most of the human populace from illness, boost everyone’s immune system, and even secrete designer drugs begin to change and want out of human bodies they occupy.

Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood – Snowman, known as Jimmy before mankind was overwhelmed by a plague, is struggling to survive in a world where he may be the last human. In search of answers, he embarks on a journey through the lush wilderness that was so recently a great city, until powerful corporations took mankind on an uncontrolled genetic engineering ride.

The Windup Girl by Paolo Bacigalupi – Living in a future where food is scarce, Anderson Lake tries to find ways to exploit this need, as he comes into conflict with Jaidee, an official of the Environmental Ministry, and encounters Emiko, a engineered windup girl who has been discarded by her creator.

Unwind by Neal Shusterman – In a future world where those between the ages of thirteen and eighteen can have their lives “unwound” and their body parts harvested for use by others, three teens go to extreme lengths to survive until they turn eighteen.

Maximum Ride: The Angel Experiment by James Patterson – After the mutant Erasers abduct the youngest member of their group, the “bird kids,” who are the result of genetic experimentation, take off in pursuit and find themselves struggling to understand their own origins and purpose.

The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E. Pearson – In the not-so-distant future, when synthetic bodies and brains are possible but illegal, Jenna Fox, who is recovering from a serious accident and suffering from memory lapses, learns a startling secret about her existence.

The Human Blend by Alan Dean Foster – Making their way through a future world where physical alterations and enhancements are commonplace, a group of thieves weigh considerable options in order to change their appearances and take on advantageous features.

Lucy by Laurence Gonzales – The result of experimental breeding between a human and ape, 14-year-old Lucy is rescued from the Congo jungle where she has lived exclusively among apes and experiences stunning revelations about herself when she is relocated to a Chicago suburb.

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