Ten Books About Dystopian Worlds You Haven’t Read Yet


Hera Serna, Staff Writer

Books have made themselves a special place in our society and have shown many great wonders to the readers of the world. Many times these books have shown readers worlds different from our own. You can find a world filled with demigods fighting for their lives or a world with children training to fight a murderous wizard. These books always have a happy ending and the world becomes somewhat perfect. This “perfect” world is called a Utopian world, an imagined place in society where everything is perfect and there is no pain, but then what could the opposite be. This opposite is called a dystopian world, an imagined state in society where there is great suffering or injustice. What is it about dystopian fiction that keeps readers going back for more? Are we suckers for punishment? Maybe we find comfort in the reminder that it’s possible that things could be worse than they  already are. For years writers have been creating dystopian futures that our beyond our wildest imaginations and are terrifyingly close to our present day. Here are ten dystopian novels everyone should read.

10.The Host By Stephenie Meyer

The earth has been invaded by a species that take over the minds of their human hosts while leaving their bodies unharmed. Wanderer, the invading “soul” who has been given Melanie’s body, knew about the challenges of living inside a human especially the overwhelming emotions, and memories. Even though she could handle the rest, there was one difficulty Wanderer didn’t expect, the former occupant of her body refusing to surrender her mind. Melanie fills Wanderer’s thoughts with visions of the man Melanie loves, Jared, a human who still lives in hiding. As outside forces make Wanderer and Melanie unwilling allies, they set off to search for the man they both love. This love leads them to meet vicious allies and their greatest enemies.

  1. Uglies By Scott Westerfeld

The book is set three hundred years into the future, with the government taking over everything, including surgical operations. The people who lived life before the government took over are known as Rusties. Tally is awaiting the day that she gets her operation because as of now she is simply an “ugly.” She then meets Shay who tells her of a rebel organization who are fully against the operations. Shay begs Tally to join the organization, called the Smoke but Tally only looks at Shay like she’s insane. Shay later runs away, which causes Tally to get into serious trouble being Shay’s friend. Tally’s operation is put on the line and will be taken away from her if she does not comply and give up Shay’s location. Tally finally agrees to do so and sets off to find Shay but during her adventure Tally discovers true emotions, pain, and even the truth behind the operations. Does Tally have it in her to leave the paradise she finds?

  1. Battle Royale By Koushun Takami

In the near future, there is a group of countries ruled by an unseen dictator called The Greater Republic of East Asia. Many things such as rock music and even certain imported shoes are banned and can only be bought through the black market. Violence has risen the past few years and because of this the government had an idea. Every two years the government holds a competition simply called, The Program. Every school in the country is entered in a lottery to compete on the Program. The winner will never have to pay for anything for the rest of his or her life but if the player loses the competition, they die. The program is a battle to the death that puts friend against friend and classmate against classmate. The students are supplied with food,water, a map, a watch, and a randomly selected weapon. How long can they survive? Will any of them even survive?

  1. The Running Man By Stephen King

It is 2025 and reality TV has become so advanced it is to the point where people are willing to put their lives on the line in exchange for a chance to win an enormous amount of wealth, 1 billion in cash to be exact. Ben Richards is desperate,  he needs money to treat his daughter’s illness. He becomes so desperate that his last chance is entering an international game show called The Running Man where the objective is to get away from police and specially trained trackers for a month while traveling all around the globe. The reward is a cool billion dollars. The catch is that everyone else on the planet is watching and willing to turn him in for a reward. The novel had even become so large a movie was made in 1987 starring the famous actor Arnold Schwarzenegger.

  1. The Man In The High Castle By Philip K. Dick

Be sure to get your parents’ approval on this one because the content can be mature. The year is 1962 and follows a world wide victory in World War II, Germany controls the eastern half of the United States while Japan controls the western states. The only part of the country that remains free is a small sliver of land in the Rocky Mountains, but this area is the weakest of them all and poor. The Germans have colonized Mars and the moon, while the Japanese army is trying to conquer South America. The story travels through three different people who meet face to face all throughout the story but fail to realize how important they are to each other. The whole story is all about lies and deception, no one can be trusted. So how can these three people change our world if they can’t even see through each others lies?

  1. Scythe Neal Shusterman

Our world has changed into one with no hunger, disease, no war, or misery. Humanity has overcome all of those things and has even conquered death himself. Now Scythes are the only ones who can end a life and they are commanded to do so in order to keep the size of the population under control. If a person makes one mistake, it is recorded and can even be used against them to be killed. The story follows Citra and Rowan as they are chosen to be an apprentice of a Scythe. This is a role neither one wants but the consequence of denying may  just outway what they think is right. The teens train in order to master the art of of taking a life, knowing that if they fail their life would be the only loss they have. As the two train side by side they create an unbreakable bond and together learn that living in a perfect world comes with a heavy price

  1. Animal Farm By George Orwell

The story starts with a whole farm being awakened from slumber in order to hear a very respected boar’s dream. The boar is aging fast and because of this he tells the farm about a rebellion he knows will happen and when it does he wants each and everyone of the animals to be equal. Soon after the boar dies the once Manor Farm is taken over by it’s overworked, mistreated animals and becomes, Animal Farm. The first stage has been reached in order to create a paradise filled with justice and equality but how far can the animals go without their perfect society falling apart.

  1. Brave New World By Aldous Huxley

The story starts with a man giving a tour to a group of students of how humans are grown. In this society, humanity has evolve so much that humans frown upon a human being born but instead create the humans themselves. As the story explains the “perfect” society we have become, we are introduced to an isolated alpha, Bernard Marx. He’s the best of his kind but is looked down at by many of his colleagues, literally. Bernard does his best to impress the beautiful but brainless Lenina Crowne, and goes as far as to take her on a vacation. At this day in age, any human that is from another human that has not been man made is looked at as an animal. So Bernard take Lenina to see these “animals” but soon chaos erupts from just one visit.

  1. 1984 By George Orwell

The story follows Winston Smith, a member of the Outer Party. He works in the Records Department in the Ministry of Truth, rewriting and bending history. In order to escape Big Brother’s reign of terror, at least inside his own mind, Winston begins a diary, an act punishable by death. Winston is determined to remain human under inhuman circumstances no matter the cost. Yet telescreens are placed everywhere, in his home, in his cubicle at work, in the cafeteria where he eats, even in the bathroom stalls. His every move is watched. No place is safe. Winston meets other just like him but must quickly realise how easily one could lie to his face.

  1. Fahrenheit 451 By Ray Bradbury

The story follows Guy Montag, a fireman who burns books in a futuristic American city. In Montag’s world, firemen start fires rather than putting them out. The people in this society do not read books, enjoy nature, spend time by themselves, think independently, or have meaningful conversations. Instead, they drive very fast, watch excessive amounts of television on wall-size sets, and listen to the radio on “Seashell Radio” sets attached to their ears. After years of the same routine, Guy meets Clarisse, a young and gentle girl with strong beliefs that there was once a society in which firemen put out fires rather than starting them. Guy laughs at her and claims her to be dull minded but he soon starts to question what he does himself. His sanity is questioned on multiple occasions but one mistake changes his life forever and he never will regret it. His decision might just be the tip society need to change and realise how perfect they really were.

It is quite a big question as to why we adore dystopian fiction so much, but in all honesty we might just love reading these books so we can feel better about our own society. Our society is starting to change and as we read these books, as we start to realize how close we are to becoming these broken societies. Reading these books give us a sense of hope that our world has not fully changed and may be a good one after all. No one truly knows at this point, but as our society changes, it is up to the next generations to prevent our society to crumble.