What's the Plural of Apocalypse?

The Atlantic recently published a list of their favorite post-apocalyptic novels in anticipation of Peter Heller's new one, Dog Stars, which they predict will become a classic.

I've read 8 out of 11 (I'm embarrassed to admit that the ones I haven't read are the "classics"). How many have you read? Did they get the list right? Would you take any out? What would you add? And, most importantly, which one of the ones I haven't read (in bold) should I read next? Maybe we'll make it a Geeks Who Read Book Club selection for 2013!

The Stand, Stephen King--one of my favorite books, of any kind, which I reread every few years. I loved reading it again after I moved to Colorado, since much of the action takes place here.

On the Beach, Nevil Shute--read this one in high school, so I don't remember it that well. Worth a reread?

Oryx and Crake and The Year of the Flood, Margaret Atwood--I've heard mixed reactions to these, I enjoyed them. Atwood has quite the vision.

The Age of Miracles, Karen Thompson Walker--this one just came out this year, so I'm sure folks will debate it's inclusion on this list, but I very much enjoyed the concept and the voice of Julia--this book combines the doomsday scenario with a coming of age story.

The Drowned World, J. G. Ballard

World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War, Max Brooks--great zombie book, with a movie planned for 2013. Something for everyone, whether you're interested in combat tactics or personal stories of the zombie uprising & how it was quashed.

The Last Man, Mary Shelley

A Canticle for Leibowitz, Walter Miller

The Road, Cormac McCarthy--sparse, well told, powerful. It was particularly freaky listening to the audio of this while riding the subways in NYC.

Blindness, Jose Saramago--Another one I listened to, another frightening vision.

What would I add to the list? One of my favorite post-apocalyptic stories is the 12 volume graphic novel series Y: The Last Man by Brian K. Vaughn.

Written by Becker on August 10, 2012


squee on August 10, 2012


I love post-apocalyptic fiction too! I don't think any list of post-apocalyptic literature could be complete without Parable of the Sower by Octavia Butler. If you haven't read it yet, drop everything (call in sick to work if you must) and pick it up!


Thanks, Squee! Funny--I OWN Parable of the Sower, but haven't read it. I'm terrible about reading books that don't have due dates...But I will put it on top of the pile of library books & pretend it has one!

Anonymous on August 12, 2012


What about Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell? Movie opening 10/26/12!

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