We're each of us alone, to be sure. What can you do but hold your hand out in the dark?

Ursula K. Le Guin

As one of the greatest science fiction and fantasy authors of all time, Ursula K. Le Guin certainly held a hand out in the dark. Her work, which includes more than 20 novels and over 100 short stories, pushed the boundaries of gender, sexuality, and race in speculative fiction. She also explored alternative social and political systems, whether in far-future space colonies or the fantastical world of “Earthsea.” In a writing career that spanned almost 60 years and numerous awards, Le Guin touched upon everything from feminism to anthropology to moral development. And no matter how complex the themes, there was always a celebration of life in her work. As she once said, “We don’t live in order to die, we live in order to live.”