Dystopian fiction is interested in imagining what would happen if everything went horribly wrong some time in the future (distant, or not-too distant). Consequently sometimes it has a bit of a sci-fi feel (like the spaceship setting in Across the Universe), but it’s nearly always a bit bleak (like the list below!). The horrible wrong-ness can be due to social, political (or socio-political) problems (see The Hunger Games, Divergent, 1984 for example). It can also be due to environmental problems (Ship Breaker, The Water Wars, Blood Red Road etc).

Here’s a selection of dystopian/futuristic titles for you to work your way through. Note that this isn’t an exhaustive list, but if you think there’s something worthy that we haven’t mentioned then email us about it!

Updated March 2013

  1. Feed, M T Anderson
  2. Ship Breaker and The Drowned Cities, Paolo Bacigalupi
  3. Genesis, Bernard Beckett
  4. The Hunger Games trilogy, Suzanne Collins
  5. MatchedCrossed and Reached, Ally Condie
  6. The Maze Runner trilogy, James Dashner
  7. Salt trilogy, Maurice Gee
  8. Lord of the Flies, William Golding
  9. Gone series, Michael Grant
  10. Blood of the Lamb trilogy, Mandy Hager
  11. When We Wake, Karen Healey
  12. The Carbon Diaries, Saci Lloyd
  13. The Giver and Son, Lois Lowry
  14. Legend and Prodigy, Marie Lu
  15. Bumped and Thumped, Megan McCafferty
  16. The Declaration series, Gemma Malley
  17. The Unidentified, Rae Mariz
  18. Chaos Walking trilogy, Patrick Ness
  19. Delirium and Pandemonium, Lauren Oliver
  20. Nineteen Eighty-Four, George Orwell
  21. The Adoration of Jenna Fox and The Fox Inheritance, Mary E Pearson
  22. Life As We Knew It, The Dead and the Gone, and This World We Live In, Susan Beth Pfeffer
  23. Under the Never Sky and Through the Ever Night, Veronica Rossi
  24. Divergent and Insurgent, Veronica Roth
  25. The Forest of Hands and TeethThe Dead-Tossed Waves, and The Dark and Hollow Places, Carrie Ryan
  26. Unwind, Neal Shusterman
  27. Article 5, Kristin Simmons
  28. Skinned, Crashed and Wired, Robin Wasserman
  29. Uglies series, Scott Westerfeld
  30. Blood Red Road and Rebel Heart, Moira Young
  31. All These Things I’ve Done and Because it is My Blood, Gabrielle Zevin