Staff Picks

Post Apocalyptic Fiction

These novels focus on the end of the world as we know it by describing how survivors adapt after horrible events kill millions. For it's not mere survival that counts. Choose your dessert or your poison--some of these novels uplift, others horrify, but you will definitely forget about your everyday problems while reading them.

Keith C.
A Canticle for Leibowitz     A Canticle for Leibowitz    
Walter M. Miller
    SF Miller

This  classic post apocalyptic novel follows a cloister of monks in Utah over several  hundred years. Funny, yet bleak , this novel questions whether man can truly  avoid repeating the past.

Children of Men     Children of Men    
P.D. James
    James

In the year  2021 humans no longer give birth.  England  is ruled by a despotic Warden who encourages the  infirm to commit group suicide and subjects immigrants  to semi-legalized slavery. Theo, a quiet man,  becomes involved with a group of dissidents.

Earth Abides     Earth Abides    
George R. Stewart
    SF Stewart

A virus has  swept the globe leaving few survivors.   Those who remain attempt to rebuild society. Written in 1949 this novel  is especially timely today.

I Am Legend     I Am Legend    
Richard Matheson
    Matheso

Before this  was a Will Smith movie, it was a book combining vampires with the end of  humanity. After a plague turns survivors into blood thirsty creatures, Robert  Neville remains immune. With his trusty dog at his side he tries to find a  cure.

Lucifer's Hammer     Lucifer's Hammer    
Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle
    SF Niven

Earth is  struck by a comet resulting in earthquakes, tsunamis, plague, famine, and an  Ice Age, just to name a few of the catastrophes faced by the survivors.

One Second After     One Second After    
William Forstchen
    SF Forstch

An  electromagnetic pulse has destroyed America's power grid. College professor  John Matherson attempts to figure out what happened and protect his family as  society breaks down.

The Road     The Road    
Cormac McCarthy
    McCarth

A man and  his son wander a post apocalyptic America, trying to get to the sea. They must  battle starvation and roving bands of cannibals to reach their goal. The real  story is the relationship between father and son.

The Stand     The Stand    
Stephen King
    King

When nearly  all of humanity is wiped out by the Super Flu survivors are pulled in two  different directions. One group is trying to rebuild the human race, while the  other is trying to destroy it.

The Windup Girl     The Windup Girl    
Paolo Bacigalupi
    SF Bacigal

This  harrowing, yet literate story portrays a post-oil Bangkok. A cast of  fascinating, realistic characters struggle for survival in an era where natural  food is extinct and humans can be genetically engineered on a whim. Winner of  the Nebula Award.

The Year of the Flood     The Year of the Flood    
Margaret Atwood
    Atwood

After most  of humankind dies Ren and Toby are locked inside their respective places of  employment, unsure if others are alive. In a future world populated by gene  spliced creations like the liobam (a lion-lamb combination) the two must  determine how to survive.

Z for Zachariah     Z for Zachariah    
Robert C. O'Brien
    Y Obrien

Told from  the perspective of a 16-year-old girl who survives nuclear war alone in her  small town. When a stranger arrives she must determine if he is friend or foe.