dystopian fiction

A
Deathless Divide

Deathless Divide is the eagerly anticipated sequel to the bestselling, engrossing Dread Nation. Picking up immediately after the events of the first novel, this story (and therefore this review) contains serious spoilers for that book. After escaping the fall of Summerland, Jane McKeene, Kate (Ka ...

C+
Nightfall

The premise of Halpern and Kujawinski’s YA dystopian novel Nightfall is amazing, and it’s why I picked it up. The inhabitants of a certain island are preparing to leave it, because on their world, day and night exist in fourteen-year cycles. The fourteen years of Day are drawing to an end, the s ...

B
The Slave and the Free

Did you read The Handmaid’s Tale and think it just wasn’t bleak enough? If so, have I got a recommendation for you. The Slave and the Free, by Suzy McKee Charnas, is set in a world where women aren’t just considered men’s property. Here, women aren’t even seen as human. The Slave and th ...

C
An Easy Death

A gun-slinging young woman battling magic-wielders and fellow gunman alike in a wild west setting on an altered historical timeline. Count us in, right? An Easy Death promises everything I could ever want in a book. It only kind of delivers, though. In this first entry of Charlaine Harris’ new ...

B+
Severance

Severance is the hotly anticipated end of days tale by newbie author Ling Ma. It’s a provocative look at the future which shows the dangers of getting caught in a meaningless present and being obsessed with a sentimental view of the past. This story shifts back and forth in time between chapter ...

A
Dread Nation

If you read only one YA novel this year, make it Dread Nation. Part Zombie Land, part Django Unchained, channeling a bit of The Hunger Games and also something wholly original, this is a tale of what happens when the undead rise while America’s race war rages. The Civil War is over. But not bec ...

B+
The Dazzling Heights

The Dazzling Heights is the sequel to Katharine McGee's spell-binding The Thousandth Floor. It's a young adult dystopian novel set in a futuristic New York City completely different from anything I've ever imagined. McGee's NYC is encased in an enormous tower with a thousand stories, and the higher ...

B+
Gather the Daughters

Dystopian novels are a dime a dozen these days, but Jennie Melamed’s début novel, Gather the Daughters, is anything but typical. Centering around a cult with some fascinating, if problematic, views about women and the societal roles they should occupy, it’s a powerful story of courage, filled w ...