So, I did this post way before this whole pandemic business came about and it has just sat in my drafts for months, so this post may hit a *little* close to home at the moment, but if you want a post-apocalyptic novel to take your mind off our own pandemic, I’ve got you covered. Post-apocalyptic is not a genre I read very widely in which is strange because I absolutely adore post-apotcalyptic stories. Maybe it is because it is sometimes a genre that is a little oversaturated with, yeah you guessed it, zombies! While I do love a good zombie story as much as the next person, sometimes I just want something a little different. Below is a list of some of our favourite post-apocalyptic novels:
The Girl in Red by Christina Henry
A post-apocalyptic retelling of Little Red Riding Hood and if that doesn’t get you interested I don’t know what will. The Girl in Red follows Red as she attemps to survive in the woods after The Crisis. Soon she discovers there are worse things in the woods than those who stalk their prey at night — sometimes there are men, ones with weak wills and dark intents. And sometimes there are something even worse than them. Red doesn’t think of herself as a killer, but she’s just trying to survive. After all, she’s just a woman alone in the woods. It is a book about how it isn’t always the post-apocalyptic event that was the true problem – or true enemy – it was what happened to those that got left behind. Suspeful and atmospheric, The Girl in Red is a post-apocalyptic book that is a must read.
Ecosystem by Joshua David Bellin
Joshua David Bellin manages to create a thrilling, unique, post-apocalyptic world where nature itself has turned against us. There are horrifying creatures, deadly plants and living trees that are described in such detail it’s like being there, amongst the Ecosystem. If you’re a fan of survivalist and post-apocalyptic literature then I would definitely, and not so subtly, tell you to read Ecosystem.
Devils Unto Dust by Emma Berquist
Ten years ago a disease spread across the West Texas desert and those infected – known as the Shakes – attacked the living and wreaked havoc. It is zombies BUT it is zombies in the wild west. It has a fierce heroine, protective siblings, and a bearded and grumpy romantic interest. Devils Unto Dust has it all! It is brimming with action. From start to finish we’re treated with tense storytelling, chilling shake scenes, and short sharp chapters, edge-of-your-seat moments, and rising emotional stakes. If you’re a fan of historical fiction, westerns, zombies, then I would definitely recommend this book.
This is Not a Test by Courtney Summers
This is Not a Test follows six teenagers who have locked themselves in a high school to take shelter from the zombie apocalypse raging outside. I love Zombies, but I would never want to be in a zombie apocalypse, and I’m sure I would not have lasted as long as these six teenagers did. Whilst the plot mainly moved around their survival, I thought that it was much more than that and had a much deeper meaning. It was about six teenagers working out their differences and putting up with each others shit for the sake of survival. A gripping and thrilling read.
Angelfall by Susan Ee
Angelfall – what an absolute classic YA post-apocalyptic novel. Angelfall is a book about a girl called Penryn trying to survive the end of the world brought about by Angels-who are far from angelic. They have brought destruction and chaos to the world and have kidnapped Penryn’s sister who will stop at nothing to get her back. Don’t waste time thinking about reading it, just read it, you won’t regret it!
Orleans by Sherri L. Smith
Orleans is a story about survival. Survival in the Delta – part of the USA that has been quarantined due to an outbreak of Delta Fever. and Fen de la Guerre need to save her tribe’s newborn baby. Orleans was a genuine breath of fresh air, especially in the dystopia/post apocalyptic genre. This was such a fantastically written novel with a brilliant, strong, intelligent and powerful protagonist with an amazing and original setting and world building. READ IT.
The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan
The Forest of Hands and Teeth, another classic YA. This was actually one of the first YA series that I read and loved, it’s one of a few books that really got me into YA. I’m not 100% sure I’d enjoy it as much if I re-read it but god I loved it when I did. The Forest of Hands and Teeth takes place during a zombie apocalypse. In her fenced off village, Mary calls them Unconsecrated. They are protected by both the Sisterhood and the Guardians. Soon she starts to uncover truths about her village that makes her question everything. When the fence is breached, Mary must make a decision that will change her whole life. It was a terrifying and gritty read, maybe give it a go?
Wranglestone by Darren Charlton
Wranglestone was my first jump back into post-apocalyptic YA for a while, and it did not dissapoint. The Dead are walking. In post-apocalyptic America a small community manages to survive in a national park surrounded by water. They are safe and protected. That is, until winter comes and the lake freezes over and then there is nothing stopping the Dead from crossing. One day a stranger approaches kind and niave Peter, which puts the community in danger. Peter is then forced to prove his worth to the community. Soon, Peter makes a dark discovery about their secret sanctuary and makes him question everything he’s ever known. Wranglestone is the perfect book to read on a cold winters night in a dimly lit room. It’s creepy, it’s atmospheric, it’s cold, and it’s suspenseful. It makes you question who are truly the monsters? Is it the Dead? or is it those who would do anything to survive? A strong debut that was thrilling, tense, and romantic.