Feel like the world is going to end when Finals Week comes around? Feel like things can't get any worse? Lean into it with some apocalyptic, post-apocalyptic, and dystopian books and video games. At least things aren't that bad, right?
Telltale is a company that has had a lot of problems as of late trying to replicate what made this first series, the first season of The Walking Dead that I’m recommending, so great. What’s so great about it is how it made you actually think about the characters and decisions you were making, something that many video games don’t particularly attempt to do. The ‘So-and-So Will Remember That’ mechanic has become a powerful tool many games have used to great effect to make you actually consider what you’re saying to these people, and the game goes out of its way to make sure those decisions come back at you in powerful ways. Add to that that The Walking Dead tells a very strong story of adopted fatherhood and the complicated emotions of doing that in an apocalypse, and you’ve got a very enjoyable, moving experience I would recommend to anyone. –Alexis
The Hunger Games is probably one of the best examples for post-apocalyptic literature that I can think of. It is set in a world that is extremely stressful on most people. Though there is a few people that are always above the rest in these types of books. This is the first book in a series that is awesome for dystopian novels. If you love gritty books then I highly recommend this book to you. –Cole
Cat’s Cradle was the first Kurt Vonnegut novel I read, and hooked me onto his works. Cat’s Cradle is a satirical commentary on modern man and the madness that surrounds him with colorful characters, stark imagery, and fully realized dark humor. It is a staple of twentieth century literature, and a good start into Vonnegut’s oeuvre. --Randyn
George Orwell's dystopian novel Nineteen Eighty-Four really was "ahead of its time" though the statement comes off as ironic and trite. Written in 1949, Orwell's vision of a world ruled by a Totalitarian government where an "Inner Circle" of elites controlled a world populated by the Proles (Proletarians) is so well crafted that the reader will feel real empathy for the protagonist Winston Smith and his love interest "femme fatale" Julia. Even if you didn't have to read it for a high school class, this is an awesome read (or re-read) for end-of-semester 2018. –John B.
Imagine all of the modern-day conveniences in your life suddenly grinding to a halt. No more cars. No more electricity. No more cell phones. In William Forstchen’s One Second After, this exact scenario occurs when an EMP (electromagnetic pulse) is released over the United States, and the residents of Black Mountain, North Carolina, find themselves thrust into an unthinkable situation, with no help on the way and danger moving ever closer. This book will keep you on the edge of your seat as you learn about the characters and dive deeper into a world that’s more reminiscent of early colonial days instead of modern-day America. This is the first of a trilogy and all three books kept me turning the pages, wondering just how prepared we would all be if modern-day life suddenly stopped with no way to get everything started again. –Susan
In a world now ravaged by a flesh-burning plague known as Dragonscale, one woman is determined to survive for the sake of herself and her unborn child. Nurse Harper Grayson had once thought there was nothing to fight for in what remained of the world, surrounded by so much death. But seeing that infected women could give birth to healthy babies, has given her the drive and determination to fight back against everything and everyone who wishes to destroy her. When she meets the mythical and haunting Fireman, who roams the streets protecting the infected who are being hunted, Harper discovers new secrets that could help her. I found this book to be both frightening and empowering as I followed Harper while she faced the ravages of the plagued and the men that wished to destroy her and everything that she loved. –Brittany
Parable of the Sower is a very American dystopia. Climate change has ravaged the California in the 2020s. The rich live in privatized towns, along with the lucky few others who have jobs with the massive corporations that own them. The middle classes try to hold on to tenuous safety in the remnants of gated communities, while the poor, with no permanent jobs available, shamble through the blighted land. Water and other essential resources have become too expensive for most people to easily afford. And A KKK-like organization terrorizes racial and religious minorities. Against these forces is Lauren, a young woman with the power to literally feel the pain of others and the idea of a new religion, Earthseed, that will push humanity to take to the stars. Sower, and its sequel Parable of the Talents, follows Lauren through pain and suffering as she builds her community of believers and challenges the darkness of 21st century America. A captivating, if at times emotionally-taxing, read. –Carl H.
Call Number: Games (Periodicals Desk) PS4/Xbox One GV1469.35.F355 2015 (2nd floor)
Who can be worried about finals when the entire world has been destroyed by nuclear war? You play this game as the sole survivor of Vault 111 tasked with rebuilding the world. How exactly you go about that? That’s totally up to you. This immersive open world RPG is the exact right combination of fun and exciting. Come by the Instructional Materials center and check it out! – Bridget