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Ranking Author Elizabeth Bear’s Best Books (A Bibliography Countdown)

Elizabeth Bear Bibliography Ranking books

“What are Elizabeth Bear’s Best Books?” We looked at all of Bear’s authored bibliography and ranked them against one another to answer that very question!

We took all of the books written by Elizabeth Bear and looked at her Goodreads, Amazon, and LibraryThing scores, ranking them against one another to see which books came out on top. The books are ranked in our list below based on which titles have the highest overall score between all 3 review sites in comparison with all of the other books by the same author. The process isn’t super scientific and in reality, most books aren’t “better” than other books as much as they are just different. That being said, we do enjoy seeing where our favorites landed, and if you aren’t familiar with the author at all, the rankings can help you see what books might be best to start with.

The full ranking chart is also included below the countdown on the bottom of the page.

Happy Scrolling!



The Top Book’s Of Elizabeth Bear



34 ) Ancestral Night

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 32
  • Amazon: 33
  • LibraryThing: 34

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33 ) All the Windwracked Stars

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 27
  • Amazon: 26
  • LibraryThing: 31

A last surviving member of the ancient Valkyries race returns to the last surviving city on her dying world to reclaim a sword of power owned by her lost brothers and sisters, an effort that is challenged by a hunting Mingan the Wolf.

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32 ) Blood and Iron

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 34
  • Amazon: 20
  • LibraryThing: 28

“She is known as Seeker. Spellbound by the Faerie Queen, she has abducted human children for her mistress’s pleasure for what seems like an eternity, unable to free herself from servitude and reclaim her own humanity.

Seeker’s latest prey is a Merlin. Named after the legendary wizard of Camelot, Merlins are not simply those who wield magic––they are magic. Now, with the Prometheus Club’s agents and rivals from Faerie both vying for the favor of this being of limitless magic to tip the balance of power, Seeker must persuade the Merlin to join her cause—or else risk losing something even more precious and more important to her than the fate of humankind.…”

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31 ) Carnival

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 29
  • Amazon: 26
  • LibraryThing: 25

“In Old Earth’s clandestine world of ambassador-spies, Michelangelo Kusanagi-Jones and Vincent Katherinessen were once a starring team. But ever since a disastrous mission, they have been living separate lives in a universe dominated by a ruthless Coalition—one that is about to reunite them.

The pair are dispatched to New Amazonia as diplomatic agents Allegedly, they are to return priceless art. Covertly, they seek to tap its energy supply. But in reality, one has his mind set on treason. And among the extraordinary women of New Amazonia, in a season of festival, betrayal, and disguise, he will find a new ally—and a force beyond any that humans have known….”

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29 ) Hammered

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 24
  • Amazon: 26
  • LibraryThing: 24

Once Jenny Casey was somebody’s daughter. Once she was somebody’s enemy. Now the former Canadian special forces warrior lives on the hellish streets of Hartford, Connecticut, in the year 2062. Racked with pain, hiding from the government she served, running with a crime lord so she can save a life or two, Jenny is a month shy of fifty, and her artificially reconstructed body has started to unravel. But she is far from forgotten. A government scientist needs the perfect subject for a high-stakes project and has Jenny in his sights. Suddenly Jenny Casey is a pawn in a furious battle, waged in the corridors of the Internet, on the streets of battered cities, and in the complex wirings of her half-man-made nervous system. And she needs to gain control of the game before a brave new future spins completely out of control.…

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29 ) The Tempering of Men

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 27
  • Amazon: 20
  • LibraryThing: 27

A sequel to “A Companion of Wolves” finds a new pack formed by Isolfr and his sister, the Konigenwolf Viradechtis, threatened by a rivalry between its two war leaders, a situation that is complicated by an invading army of humans.

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28 ) Seven for a Secret

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 19
  • Amazon: 32
  • LibraryThing: 20

“Now, so that one of those companions may die where she once lived, he has come again to the City of London. In 1938, where the ghosts of centuries of war haunt rain-grey streets and the Prussian Chancellor’s army of occupation rules with an iron hand.

Here he will meet his own ghosts, the remembrances of loves mortal – and immortal. And here he will face the Chancellor’s secret weapon: a human child.”

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27 ) Undertow

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 33
  • Amazon: 4
  • LibraryThing: 32

André Deschênes is a hired assassin, but he wants to be so much more. If only he can find a teacher who will forgive his murderous past–and train him to manipulate odds and control probability. It’s called the art of conjuring, and it’s André’s only route to freedom. For the world he lives on is run by the ruthless Charter Trade Company, and his floating city, Novo Haven, is little more than a company town where humans and aliens alike either work for one tyrannical family–or are destroyed by it. But beneath Novo Haven’s murky waters, within its tangled bayous, reedy banks, and back alleys, revolution is stirring. And one more death may be all it takes to shift the balance. .

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26 ) Ad Eternum

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 21
  • Amazon: 20
  • LibraryThing: 26

For centuries, the wampyr has drifted from one place to another. From one life to another. It’s 1962, and he’s returned to New Amsterdam for the first time since he fled it on pain of death some sixty years before. On the eve of social revolution, on the cusp of a new way of life, he’s nevertheless surrounded by inescapable reminders of who he used to be.…

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25 ) By the Mountain Bound

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 12
  • Amazon: 26
  • LibraryThing: 28

For five hundred years the immortal Children of the Light, einherjar and valkyrie, have lived together in the North of Valdyrgard. But one dreadful day a woman is washed up from the sea, a Lady who is no mortal, though she is not valkyrie either. Thus begins the breaking of the Children of the Light, the tarnishing of their power, and the death of Valdyrgard. A prequel to Elizabeth Bear’s highly acclaimed “All the Windwracked Stars.”

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24 ) The Stone in the Skull

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 12
  • Amazon: 20
  • LibraryThing: 33

The Gage is a brass automaton created by a wizard of Messaline around the core of a human being. His wizard is long dead, and he works as a mercenary. He is carrying a message from a the most powerful sorcerer of Messaline to the Rajni of the Lotus Kingdom. With him is The Dead Man, a bitter survivor of the body guard of the deposed Uthman Caliphate, protecting the message and the Gage. They are friends, of a peculiar sort.

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23 ) New Amsterdam

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 31
  • Amazon: 17
  • LibraryThing: 16

In a world where the sun never set on the British Empire, where Holland finally ceded New Amsterdam to the English only during the Napoleonic wars, and where the expansion of the American colonies was halted by the war magic of the Iroquois, they are exiles in the new world–and its only hope for justice.…

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21 ) One Eyed Jack

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 30
  • Amazon: 31
  • LibraryThing: 2

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21 ) Dust

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 26
  • Amazon: 14
  • LibraryThing: 23

Ariane, Princess of the House of Rule, was known to be fiercely cold-blooded. But severing an angel’s wings on the battlefield—even after she had surrendered—proved her completely without honor. Captive, the angel Perceval waits for Ariane not only to finish her off—but to devour her very memories and mind. Surely her gruesome death will cause war between the houses—exactly as Ariane desires. But Ariane’s plan may yet be opposed, for Perceval at once recognizes the young servant charged with her care.

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20 ) Chill

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 22
  • Amazon: 18
  • LibraryThing: 22

“Sometimes the greatest sin is survival.

The generation ship Jacob’s Ladder has barely survived cataclysms from without and within. Now, riding the shock wave of a nova blast toward an uncertain destiny, the damaged ship—the only world its inhabitants have ever known—remains a war zone. Even as Perceval, the new captain, struggles to come to terms with the traumas of her recent past, the remnants of rebellion aboard the ship still threaten the crew’s survival.

Yet as Perceval’s relatives Tristen and Benedick play a deadly game of cat and mouse in pursuit of a traitor through a vast ship that is renewing itself in strange and dangerous ways, an even more insidious threat is building in a place no one ever thought to look. And this implacable enemy could change the face of the ship forever if a ragtag band of heroes cannot stop it.”

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19 ) A Companion to Wolves

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 25
  • Amazon: 18
  • LibraryThing: 18

Isolfr is a young nobleman chosen to become a ‘wolfcarl’ – a warrior who is bonded to a fighting wolf. But during the winter the trolls come down from the north in far greater numbers than before, and the holding’s complaisance gives way to terror in the dark.

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18 ) The White City

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 15
  • Amazon: 26
  • LibraryThing: 14

For centuries, the White City has graced the banks of the Moskva River. But in the early years of a twentieth century not quite analogous to our own, a creature even more ancient than Moscow’s fortress heart has entered its medieval walls. In the wake of political success and personal loss, the immortal detective Don Sebastien de Ulloa has come to Moscow to choose his path amid the embers of war between England and her American colonies. Accompanied by his court–the forensic sorcerer Lady Abigail Irene and the authoress Phoebe Smith–he seeks nothing but healing and rest. But Moscow is both jeweled and corrupt, and when you are old there is no place free of ghosts, and Sebastien is far from the most ancient thing in Russia…

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17 ) Scardown

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 15
  • Amazon: 20
  • LibraryThing: 17

Jenny is caught in a desperate battle where old resentments become bitter betrayals and justice takes the cruelest forms of vengeance. With the help of a brilliant AI, an ex-crime lord, and the man she loves, Jenny may just get her chance to save the world. If it doesn’t come to an end first.…

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15 ) Karen Memory

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 18
  • Amazon: 8
  • LibraryThing: 18

“””You ain’t gonna like what I have to tell you, but I’m gonna tell you anyway. See, my name is Karen Memery, like memory only spelt with an e, and I’m one of the girls what works in the Hôtel Mon Cherie on Amity Street. Hôtel has a little hat over the o like that. It’s French, so Beatrice tells me.””

Set in the late 19th century—when the city we now call Seattle Underground was the whole town (and still on the surface), when airships plied the trade routes, would-be gold miners were heading to the gold fields of Alaska, and steam-powered mechanicals stalked the waterfront, Karen is a young woman on her own, is making the best of her orphaned state by working in Madame Damnable’s high-quality bordello. Through Karen’s eyes we get to know the other girls in the house—a resourceful group—and the poor and the powerful of the town. Trouble erupts one night when a badly injured girl arrives at their door, beggin sanctuary, followed by the man who holds her indenture, and who has a machine that can take over anyone’s mind and control their actions. And as if that wasn’t bad enough, the next night brings a body dumped in their rubbish heap—a streetwalker who has been brutally murdered.”

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15 ) Whiskey and Water

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 15
  • Amazon: 8
  • LibraryThing: 21

Seven years ago, Matthew the Magi ended an age-old war. It only cost him everything. Matthew and his fellow Promethean Magi followed Jane Andraste into Faerie to rescue her half-human daughter and destroy forever the power of the Fae. But when Matthew discovered Jane’s treachery, he betrayed her, and the Promethean armies fell. Matthew lost his brother and his mentor and … the lives of almost everyone else he knew.” “Now Jane is recruiting a new army, and Matthew – his right hand crippled, his power shattered – is the protector of New York City. So when he finds a young woman brutally murdered by a beast almost certainly Fae, it’s his duty to bring her killer to justice before Jane uses the crime to justify more war. To stop Jane, Matthew must contend with Magi, Fae, angels, untamed forces of nature, and an honest cop who thinks Matthew himself is the killer. And in the end, he’ll find himself face-to-face with the greatest Adversary of all.

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13 ) Garrett Investigates

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 5
  • Amazon: 33
  • LibraryThing: 1

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13 ) The Stratford Man: Volume I: Ink and Steel

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 22
  • Amazon: 12
  • LibraryThing: 5

Kit Marley, playwright and spy in the service of Queen Elizabeth, has been murdered. His true gift to Her Majesty was his way with words, crafting plays infused with a subtle magic that maintained her rule. He performed this task on behalf of the Prometheus Club, a secret society of nobles engaged in battle against sorcerers determined to destroy England. Assuming Marley’s role is William Shakespeare–but he is unable to create the magic needed to hold the Queen’s enemies at bay. Resurrected by enchantment in Faerie, Marley is England’s only hope. But before he can assist Will in the art of magic, he must uncover the traitor among the Prometheans responsible for his death.–From publisher description.

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12 ) Range of Ghosts

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 20
  • Amazon: 8
  • LibraryThing: 10

“Temur, grandson of the Great Khan, is walking from a battlefield where he was left for dead. All around lie the fallen armies of his cousin and his brother who made war to rule the Khaganate. Temur is now the legitimate heir by blood to his grandfather’s throne, but he is not the strongest. Going into exile is the only way to survive his ruthless cousin.

Once-Princess Samarkar is climbing the thousand steps of the Citadel of the Wizards of Tsarepheth. She was heir to the Rasan Empire until her father got a son on a new wife. Then she was sent to be the wife of a Prince in Song, but that marriage ended in battle and blood. Now she has renounced her worldly power to seek the magical power of the wizards.

These two will come together to stand against the hidden cult that has so carefully brought all the empires of the Celadon Highway to strife and civil war through guile and deceit and sorcerous power.”

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11 ) Stone Mad

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 4
  • Amazon: 3
  • LibraryThing: 28

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9 ) Grail

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 7
  • Amazon: 20
  • LibraryThing: 7

The ship Jacob’s Ladder has arrived at its destination – the planet they call Grail. But Grail is populated by humans already, who call their home Fortune. They are wary of sharing Fortune, particularly with genetically engineered humans. Meanwhile, a murder aboard Jacob’s Ladder indicates that there are enemies among the crew.…

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9 ) Worldwired

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 11
  • Amazon: 13
  • LibraryThing: 10

“Give Canada’s Master Warrant Officer Jenny Casey an inch and she’ll take a galaxy. That’s just the kind of person a world on the brink of destruction needs. The year is 2063, and Earth has been brutalized. An asteroid flung at Toronto by the PanChinese government has killed tens of millions and left the equivalent of a nuclear explosion in its wake. Humanity must find another option….

Perched above the devastation in the starship Montreal, Jenny is still in the thick of the fray. Plugged into the worldwire, connected to a brilliant AI, her mind can be everywhere and anywhere at once. But it’s focused on the mysterious alien beings right outside her ship. Are they there to help–or destroy? With Earth a breeding ground for treason and betrayal as governments struggle to assign blame, Jenny holds the fate of humankind in her artificially reconstructed hand….”

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7 ) Shattered Pillars

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 8
  • Amazon: 14
  • LibraryThing: 6

“The Shattered Pillars is the second book of Bear’s The Eternal Sky trilogy and the sequel to Range of Ghosts. Set in a world drawn from our own great Asian Steppes, this saga of magic, politics and war sets Re-Temur, the exiled heir to the great Khagan and his friend Sarmarkar, a Wizard of Tsarepheth, against dark forces determined to conquer all the great Empires along the Celedon Road.

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7 ) An Apprentice to Elves

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 9
  • Amazon: 4
  • LibraryThing: 15

Sarah Monette and Elizabeth Bear return with the third book in their Iskryne trilogy, An Apprentice to Elves. The trilogy began with A Companion to Wolves, and continued in The Tempering of Men. This novel picks up the story of Alfgyfa, a young woman who has been raised in the Wolfhall by her father Isolfr, who is the human leader of the queen-wolf Viridechtis’ pack, and was the protagonist of the first book. The warrior culture of Iskryne forbids many things to women–and most especially it forbids them bonding to one of the giant telepathic trellwolves. But as her father was no ordinary boy, Alfgyfa is no ordinary girl. Her father has long planned to send his daughter to Tin, a matriarch among the elves who live nearby, to be both apprentice and ambassador, and now she is of age to go.

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6 ) The Sea thy Mistress

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 14
  • Amazon: 2
  • LibraryThing: 10

Beautiful Cathoair, now an immortal warrior angel, has been called back to the city of Eiledon to raise his son — Muire’s son as well — cast up on shore as an infant. It is seemingly a quiet life. But deadly danger approaches: the evil goddess Heythe, who engineered the death of Valdyrgard, has travelled forward in time on her rainbow steed seeking revenge.

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5 ) The Chains That You Refuse

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 10
  • Amazon: 1
  • LibraryThing: 13

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4 ) Bone and Jewel Creatures

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 5
  • Amazon: 6
  • LibraryThing: 9

Bijou the Artificer has been a wizard of Messaline for eighty years, building her servants from precious scraps, and now she is ready to rest. But a former apprentice brings her a child poisoned by a sorcerous infection, the first sign that Kaulas the Necromancer–Bijou’s old nemesis and love–is unleashing a reeking half-death on the City of Jackals.

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2 ) Steles of the Sky

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 1
  • Amazon: 14
  • LibraryThing: 3

“Elizabeth Bear concludes her award-winning epic fantasy trilogy, The Eternal Sky, with Steles of the Sky.

Re Temur, exiled heir to his grandfather’s Khaganate, has finally raised his banner and declared himself at war with his usurping uncle. With his companions—the Wizard Samarkar, the Cho-tse Hrahima, and the silent monk Brother Hsiung—he must make his way to Dragon Lake to gather in his army of followers.

Temur has many enemies, and they are not idle. The sorcerer who leads the Nameless Assassins, whose malice has shattered the peace of all the empires of the Celedon Highway, has struck at Temur’s uncle already. To the south, in the Rasan empire, a magical plague rages. To the east, the great city of Asmaracanda has burned, and the Uthman Caliph is deposed. And in the hidden ancient empire of Erem, Temur’s son has been born, and a new moon has risen in the Eternal Sky.”

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2 ) Shoggoths in Bloom

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 2
  • Amazon: 8
  • LibraryThing: 8

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1 ) The Stratford Man: Volume II: Hell and Earth

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 3
  • Amazon: 6
  • LibraryThing: 4

Two queens sit on two thrones in two different worlds, and their reigns may come to an end. In the iron world, conspiracy and subterfuge within England’s royal courts continue to threaten Elizabeth’s power. In the Faerie realm, Mab, bound by magic to her sister sovereign, finds herself weakened as well. Now the fate of two worlds lies in the hands of two clever wordsmiths …” “Kit Marley and William Shakespeare are playwrights in the service of Her Majesty, employed by the Prometheus Club. Their words, infused with magic, empower Elizabeth’s rule. But some of the Prometheans, composed of England’s most influential men and mages, have dissenting ideas about how best to serve the nation – and usurping the queen is not out of the question.””Able to walk in both worlds, Kit desperately seeks allies to aid him in his mission to protect both Elizabeth and Mab – only to encounter enemies, mortal and monster, who will stop at nothing to usher in a new age. But despite the might of his adversaries, Kit possesses more power than even he can possibly imagine.

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Elizabeth Bear’s Best Books



Elizabeth Bear Review Website Bibliography Rankings

BookGoodreadsAmazonLibraryThingOveral Rank
The Stratford Man: Volume II: Hell and Earth 364 1
Steles of the Sky 1143 2
Shoggoths in Bloom 288 2
Bone and Jewel Creatures 569 4
The Chains That You Refuse 10113 5
The Sea thy Mistress 14210 6
Shattered Pillars 8146 7
An Apprentice to Elves 9415 7
Grail 7207 9
Worldwired 111310 9
Stone Mad 4328 11
Range of Ghosts 20810 12
Garrett Investigates 5331 13
The Stratford Man: Volume I: Ink and Steel 22125 13
Karen Memory 18818 15
Whiskey and Water 15821 15
Scardown 152017 17
The White City 152614 18
A Companion to Wolves 251818 19
Chill 221822 20
One Eyed Jack 30312 21
Dust 261423 21
New Amsterdam 311716 23
The Stone in the Skull 122033 24
By the Mountain Bound 122628 25
Ad Eternum 212026 26
Undertow 33432 27
Seven for a Secret 193220 28
Hammered 242624 29
The Tempering of Men 272027 29
Carnival 292625 31
Blood and Iron 342028 32
All the Windwracked Stars 272631 33
Ancestral Night 323334 34

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