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Further Reading


Fahrenheit 451
Ray Bradbury
A totalitarian regime of the future has ordered all books to be destroyed, but one of the book burners comes to realize their merit.

The Lord of the Flies
William Golding
One of the first modern novels to explore violence among children, this is a story of schoolboys who must survive on a deserted island as their social order breaks down.

Brave New World
Aldous Huxley
This work of dystopian literature describes the socialized horrors of a futuristic “utopia” devoid of individual freedom.

“The Lottery”
Shirley Jackson
A town gathers for a mysterious lottery. Now regarded as a classic and available in many short story collections, Jackson's tale horrified readers when it first appeared in 1948.

George Orwell
The seminal novel envisioning a grey, totalitarian future. A meek man who has always obeyed Big Brother privately begins to resist.

Adult Fiction

Dystopian stories and satires make up a large and fascinating genre—these are just a few examples. Ask library staff for more suggested reading.

The Handmaid's Tale
Margaret Atwood
Atwood's satirical tour de force describes life in what was once the United States, now a shockingly repressive and intolerant monotheocracy.

Parable of the Sower
Octavia Butler
This novel of dystopian America has a hopeful note. It follows the travels of a teenager who is forced to journey north after the destruction of her family unit by desperate scavengers called "paints."

No Blade of Grass
John Christopher
A small group of adults and children struggle to reach safety after a bio-weapon destroys the world's grain supply. One of the major themes is the rapid breakdown of society, and how far civilized people will go to protect themselves and their families.

The Bachman Books: Four Early Novels
Stephen King
Two of these early, pseudonymous novels, The Long Walk and Running Man, tell chilling, futuristic tales of teenagers forced to compete to the death, in a marathon and a TV game show.

The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon
Stephen King
Another gripping survival story by King. On an afternoon hike with her dysfunctional family, nine-year-old Trisha becomes hopelessly lost and spends the next nine days in the woods trying to stay alive.

The Road
Cormac McCarthy
This is another recent example of the literary post-apocalyptic novel, a grim and violent commentary on human nature. A father and young son make their way through the ruins of a devastated America, struggling to survive and preserve the last remnants of their humanity.

The King Must Die
Mary Renault
This novel retells the legend of Theseus and the Minotaur, one of the stories that helped inspire Suzanne Collins to write The Hunger Games.

Divided Kingdom
Rupert Thomson
A government redistributes its citizens into regions according to personality type, partitioning the country with barricades and razor wire, until a boy taken from his family embarks on a voyage that will change his life and his country.

Wastelands: Stories of the Apocalypse
A collection of postapocalyptic short stories by modern authors which vary from bleak hopelessness to rays of hope in a living nightmare—a good introduction to the genre.

Teen Fiction

M. T. Anderson
Titus never questions the Feed-the transmitter in his brain that connects him to society-till he meets an unusual girl called Violet, who is home schooled and has a completely different view of their world.

The White Mountains
John Christopher
The capping ceremony marks the end of childhood—and of freedom—in this exciting novel of teenagers resisting alien overlords and thought control. The sequels are When the Tripods Came.

The Silenced
James Devita
Year's ago, Marena's mother was “disappeared” by their oppressive government for public dissent. Deciding to follow in her mother's footsteps, Marena begins a grassroots resistance movement, but will she find the success her mother hoped for, or suffer her mother's fate?

Peter Dickinson
This imagined life is based on all-too-real recent history. Paul is a boy who was raised as a child soldier and knows nothing but violence; where does that leave him when peace is declared? Vivid, shocking, and intensely readable.

Little Brother
Cory Doctorow
After terrorist attacks on San Francisco, high school tech genius Marcus is caught up in a counterterrorist sweep and arrested by Homeland Security. He decides to fight their totalitarian control of his city by every means he can, hacking into computer systems and raising a resistance movement.

The City of Ember
Jeanne Duprau
The city of Ember has sheltered humans underground for so long that its residents don't even know there is an outside world. But now the infrastructure is decaying and resources are scarce. Two teens must question tradition and find the way out before their whole city goes dark forever.

Among the Hidden
Margaret Peterson Haddix
Luke is an illegal third child and would be killed if discovered. In strict hiding, he glimpses a face at a window in the new housing development next door. He's not the only illegal child, and must choose whether to come out of hiding in a bid for freedom.

The Carbon Diaries 2015
Saci Lloyd
Global warming has led to strong storms and droughts, so the UK institutes carbon rationing to cut emissions. Everyone is issued monthly carbon points for power, transportation, and heat. Laura's life is changed dramatically, but her journal shows that ordinary life continues.

The Giver
Lois Lowry
Imagine an orderly world where everyone's life goes smoothly. Unless you're different. Jonas, whose incredible memory qualifies him to train as Keeper of Memory, begins to learn what his society has given up for its sensible ways. The sequels are Messenger.

The Declaration
Gemma Malley
A longevity drug has created an almost immortal class and forced illegal “surplus” people into “usefulness”—slavery. Surplus teen Anna, about to graduate to this slavery, meets another teen with a very different ideas about their society. The sequel is The Resistance.

Island of the Blue Dolphins
Scott O´Dell
Karana is a twelve-year-old Native American girl whose tribe is being removed from an island. In the confusion of leaving, she remains behind to find her young brother. He dies shortly after, leaving Karana alone to struggle for survival as she waits eighteen years for rescue.

Gary Paulsen
Thirteen-year-old Brian, going to visit his divorced dad, is the sole survivor of a small plane crash in the Canadian wilderness. He has only a hatchet to help him survive, and each decision he makes may be his last.

Life as We Knew It
Susan Pfeffer
Miranda is a normal teenager. But when an asteroid knocks the moon out of orbit, inflicting terrible climate changes and natural disasters on Earth, life is suddenly far from normal. Miranda keeps a journal as her world changes, civilization crumbles, and winter moves in. A companion volume, The Dead and the Gone, takes place in the same imagined future.

How I Live Now
Meg Rosoff
Daisy is sent from New York to her aunt's farm in England to escape problems at home. Her aunt is away when a brutal enemy invades England. Daisy and one young cousin are separated from the others and must face hardships and danger as they try to reunite with the rest of their family.

David Stahler
Jacob lives on Harmony, where everyone is genetically engineered to be blind, since sight is believed unreliable. His thirteenth birthday is near, and he will be assigned a career. But he is experiencing mysterious symptoms and realizes he is developing sight—a secret with terrifying consequences.

Scott Westerfeld
Almost sixteen, Tally is facing the operation that will turn her from an Ugly into a Pretty. A friend tries to persuade her to resist. Tally is at first revolted by the unmodified rebels, but as she learns the truth about the operation, she must make a choice about whether to go back. Specials follow.

Adult Nonfiction

Popular Culture and Social Issues

Reality TV
Presents the pros and cons of the current reality craze and its cultural effects.

Taking Back Childhood: Helping Your Kids Thrive in a Fast-Paced, Media-Saturated, Violence-Filled World
Nancy Carlsson-Paige
Based on renowned early childhood development expert Carlsson-Paige's thirty years of research, this groundbreaking book helps parents navigate the cultural currents shaping the lives of kids today, to restore childhood to the very best of what it can and should be.

Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder
Richard Louv
The author advocates reconnecting children to knowledge of the natural world.

Savage Pastimes
Harold Schechter
A look at violence in the media, with an emphasis on the effects on children.

Growing up Empty: The Hunger Epidemic in America
Loretta Schwartz-Nobel
The author of the 1981 study Starving in the Shadow of Plenty looks at current hunger and homelessness in America.

Closing the Food Gap
Mark Winne
An examination of poverty, hunger, and food activism in a land of plenty.

Survival and Nature

Foxfire 11: The Old Homeplace, Wild Plant Uses, Preserving and Cooking Food, Hunting Stories, Fishing, and More Affairs of Plain Living
One of the classic Foxfire volumes on southern Appalachian life.

The SAS Guide to Tracking
Bob Carss
How to track anything, anywhere.

Outdoor Survival Guide
Randy Gerke
Each year millions of people venture into the world's beautiful but unpredictable wilderness, and thousands of them encounter unexpected natural dangers and disasters. Outdoor Survival Guide provides practical information to create a sensible survival plan and be prepared for any hazardous situation.

Into the Wild
Jon Krakauer
The account of a young man who decided to leave society behind and exist off the land in Alaskan wilderness, with disastrous results.

The Outdoors Almanac
Len McDougall
For backpackers, campers, paddlers, and outdoor enthusiasts of all stripes, here is an almanac of practical information certain to be a trusted reference.

The Complete Wilderness Training Manual
Hugh McManners
Are you a survivor? Basic equipment, living in the wild, finding water, finding and preparing food, and navigation are all covered in this guide.

Survive! Essential Skills and Tactics to Get You out of Anywhere, Alive
Les Stroud
Filmmaker, outdoor adventurer, singer-songwriter, and creator of the television series Survivorman, Stroud offers tips on getting around in the wilderness. His advice encompasses psychological aspects of survival, water, fire, shelter, food, dangers and hazards, weather, clothing, and first aid.

Complete Survival Manual
Michael S. Sweeney
Provides survival information from the American Red Cross, U.S. Army, Boy Scouts of America, and the Girl Scouts of the U.S.A. Covers preparation, shelter, food, water, fire, navigation, signaling, hazards and first aid in various environments.

SAS Survival Handbook: How to Survive in the Wild, in Any Climate, on Land or at Sea
John Wiseman
Wiseman served in the British Special Air Service for 26 years, part of which he spent as a survival instructor. Here, he distills that knowledge in an illustrated guide for the general reader.

Mythology, Literature and History

A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier
Ishmael Beah
Beah was a child guerilla during Sierra Leone's civil war, and this is his account of being raised in violence.

Dystopian Literature: A Theory and Research Guide
M. Keith Booker
A history and guide to the genre.

Bullfinch's Mythology
Thomas Bulfinch
One of the classic retellings of myths and legends.

The Gladiators: History's Most Deadly Sport
Martin Griffin, ed.
A historical look at the most famous form of violence as entertainment, the Roman gladiatorial games.

Edith Hamilton
Another classic mythology collection.

The Resistance
Russell Miller
A Time/Life history of the resistance to Nazism.

Teen Nonfiction

Ending World Hunger
Nathan Aaseng
Food production methods and the causes of food shortages and are the focus of this look at the world-wide problem.

Poverty: Opposing Viewpoints
Opposing Viewpoints series teen
Karen Balkin
Part of a popular teen series that looks at both sides of the issue.

The Hero and the Minotaur: The Fantastic Adventures of Theseus
Robert Byrd
Written for children, this is an engaging and beautifully illustrated retelling of the myth.

Media Violence: Opposing Viewpoitns
David Haugen and Susan Musser, eds.
Another title in this popular teen series on controversial issues.

A Roman Gladiator
Don Nardo
For readers interested in the original “bread and circuses.”

Cover of The Hunger Games