The works on this page are taken from the SF Masterworks and Fantasy Masterworks series and from David Pringle's Science Fiction: The 100 Best Novels and Modern Fantasy: The 100 Best Novels. The reason for using these lists (as opposed to e.g. the Hugo and Nebula Awards for Best Novel) is because they make a clear distinction about which works are science fiction and which ones are fantasy.
In order to appear on this page, a work must be on the American, Australian, or Canadian public domain. The reason for this is that these countries are the only anglophone countries with active Gutenberg Projects. Furthermore, in order to appear on this page a work must be uploaded to one or more of the following: Project Gutenberg, Project Gutenberg Australia, Project Gutenberg Canada, Faded Page, Roy Glashan's Library, or eBooks@Adelaide.
American copyright law protects works for 95 years from the year of first publication, meaning that works published in or before 1925 are in the American public domain while works published in or after 1926 are still under American copyright. The Australian public domain is currently frozen until 2026; until then, works from authors who died in or before 1954 are in the Australian public domain while works from authors who died in or after 1955 are under Australian copyright. Canadian copyright law protects works for 50 years from the year of the author, meaning that works whose author died in or before 1970 are in the Canadian public domain while works whose author died in or after 1971 are protected by Canadian copyright.
This page is licensed under a Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal License.