Favourite Larry Niven Book?

What's your favourite Larry Niven book? (3 votes each)

  • Neutron Star

    Votes: 2 12.5%
  • Protector

    Votes: 3 18.8%
  • The World of Ptavvs

    Votes: 1 6.3%
  • The Mote in God's Eye

    Votes: 7 43.8%
  • Ringworld

    Votes: 10 62.5%
  • Lucifers' Hammer

    Votes: 3 18.8%
  • Destiny Road

    Votes: 1 6.3%
  • The Integral Trees

    Votes: 1 6.3%
  • Dream Park

    Votes: 2 12.5%
  • Fleet of Worlds

    Votes: 1 6.3%
  • Oath of Fealty

    Votes: 2 12.5%
  • Footfall

    Votes: 1 6.3%
  • Inferno

    Votes: 1 6.3%
  • Tales of Known Space

    Votes: 1 6.3%
  • The Legacy of Heorot

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • A Gift from Earth

    Votes: 1 6.3%
  • A Hole in Space

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Ringworld Engineers

    Votes: 3 18.8%
  • The Gripping Hand

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters


Luddite Curmudgeon
Jul 26, 2012
Auckland, NZ
I think some of the key authors of SFF who have written heaps of books should perhaps have a running poll on their forum to serve as (a) a source of interest, and (b) helpful opinion for others coming here for thoughts on what to read.

So how about a poll on favourite Larry Niven books? I've not read all by any means, and this poll will include co-authored books. For those books with sequels, I have tended to list only the first book. Two reasons for this - the sequels are often not as good, and if they are, we can assume someone who votes for The Integral Trees probably likes The Smoke Ring too.

3 votes each folks.
This was a tough choice for me, so I decided to limit myself to one collection, one solo novel, and one collaboration. Even given that limitation, it was difficult. Anyway, I went with Neutron Star as the collection, maybe because it was a good introduction to his style of story; Ringworld as the solo novel, for much the same reason; and, surprisingly even to me, Oath of Fealty as the collaboration, because I found the concept fascinating. If I had to go with a second choice in each category, I guess it would be Tales of Known Space, Protector, and The Mote in God's Eye.

Notable among those not listed would be The Long ARM of Gil Hamilton for collection and A World Out of Time for solo novel. I don't think I've read any other collaborations.

Among least favorites, his first novel World of Ptavvs isn't that bad, but has a slightly amateurish style, and I thought The Gripping Hand was not good at all.
I chose A Gift from Earth, as it is the one I remember best, so it must have made the greatest impression.
I voted for the three I most clearly remember: 1. Ringworld (book 1 being the best of the series, from there on declining), 2 The Mote in God's Eye. 3. Lucifer's Hammer.
Though I have to say here, the last 2 were written with co-author Jerry Pournelle, which resulted in a quite distinct sound compared to Niven's solo novels.
Great idea @Bick. This is sort of tough for me. I really like Niven and have enjoyed many of his novels. However, Ringworld and the whole concept has always captured my interest. So one and two have to be Ringworld and The Ringworld Engineers even though they are perhaps not his best books objectively. The last was a very hard choice but I gave it to Protector.

As an aside, I have always enjoyed The Man-Kzin Wars. Niven doesn't actually write that much for them, but they aren't your typical military sci-fi and they really build up the history of Known Space.
There was a time when Larry Niven (especially with Jerry Pournelle) was my favorite author.

I voted for 3 of great S.F. books of all time
The Mote in God's Eye
The Integral Trees
I'm reading my first Larry Niven book, co-written with Poumelle. But Luciffer's Hammer first hundred pages was a tough read. I really don't care about those people. I didn't find them interesting. I read the middle part of the story is more exciting. Anyway, it's worth the effort.
If I could have had a fourth, I’d have voted for another collaboration: The Flying Sorcerers, with David Gerrold. An excellent tech v magic story.

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