Contemporary dystopia for grownups

The apocalyptic/dystopia genre has just exploded in the past few years, which you may have noticed if you live on Earth or in its vicinity. But the majority of these books are written for young adults. What if you like those kinds of stories, but not the YA style of writing? Here are some suggestions for more sophisticated, meaty, or literary dystopia books published in the last ten years or so.

Bacigalupi, Paolo. The Windup Girl (2009)

Bourne, J.L. Day by Day Armageddon (2007)

Brooks, Max. World War Z: an oral history of the zombie war (2006)

Cline, Ernest. Ready Player One (2011)

Cronin, Justin. The Passage (2010) and The Twelve (2012)

Forstchen, William. One Second After (2009)

Heller, Peter. The Dog Stars (2012)

Howey, Hugh. Wool (2012)

Ishiguro, Kazuo. Never Let Me Go (2005)

Jordan, Hillary. When She Woke (2011)

King, Stephen. Cell (2006)

Kunstler, James Howard. World Made By Hand (2008)

McCarthy, Cormac. The Road (2006)

Moody, David. Autumn (2010)

Mosely, Walter. Futureland (2001)

Toro, Guillermo del. The Strain (2009)

Walker, Karen Thomson. Age of Miracles (2012)

Wellington, David. Monster Island (2006)

Whitehead, Colson. Zone One (2011)

Wilson, Daniel H. Robopocalypse (2011)

Did I leave out anything that you’d recommend? Let us know in the comments!

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4 Responses to Contemporary dystopia for grownups

  1. Pingback: Dark World « Stories in 5 Minutes

  2. Jenny says:

    When She Woke by Hillary Jordan was fantastic, good call there. What about The Handmaid’s Tale and Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood? Also, I wouldn’t call them dystopias, but both Arcadia by Lauren Groff and A Visit From the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan have final sections set in a dystopic future.

  3. linda says:

    I loved A Handmaid’s Tale! For the purposes of this list I was trying to stick with books published fairly recently. I started including all the classics, and it just got way too long.

  4. Jenny says:

    Makes sense. 🙂

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