The best books about apocalyptic events and surviving in confinement

Why am I passionate about this?

Apocalyptic novels have always been a favorite genre of mine. It’s interesting seeing the lengths that people will go through to survive when all factors are stacked against them. The list of novels below is some of the many great reads that opened my eyes to this genre. The characters in these novels are oftentimes faced with challenges that seem impossible to the reader but are left feeling so fulfilled after seeing a character complete the difficult tasks. I hope you enjoy the books on this list as much as I have!


I wrote...

Briskwood Blood Rain

By Christopher Joubert,

Book cover of Briskwood Blood Rain

What is my book about?

When Miles Parker walks into one of his final classes of high school, the only thing on his mind is how poorly he is about to do on a Literature quiz he didn’t study for. Then, his teacher dies – and vanishes – in front of him. He thinks his day can’t get any stranger. He’s wrong. 

When severe weather roars into the small city of Briskwood and school is canceled for the rest of the day, Miles thinks nothing of it. Then, the rain suddenly turns red and mutates people into yellow-eyed, spike-covered creatures, hell-bent on terrorizing anything that moves. With the blood rain cutting off access to many necessary resources, Miles must use his limited supplies to fight an enemy that is much stronger than he is. 
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The books I picked & why

Book cover of Gone

Christopher Joubert Why did I love this book?

This is the book that inspired me to begin my journey as an author. My grandmother purchased this novel for me as a birthday present in middle school and I instantly fell in love with the series that spans nine novels.

Michael Grant’s story of a group of young adults and children trapped inside a dome without any adult supervision is a triumphant, but heartbreaking masterpiece. The trials and tribulations of the FAYZ will keep readers on the edge of their seats the entire time.

This novel showed me the importance of painting a picture for my readers. When writing my own novel, I felt the presence of Gone flowing within me as I came up with descriptions for my own terrifying apocalyptic event.

By Michael Grant,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Gone as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 12, 13, 14, and 15.

What is this book about?

Welcome to the FAYZ! The first book in the bestselling cult YA thriller series GONE that Stephen King calls a 'driving, torrential narrative'.

In the blink of an eye all the adults disappear in a small town in southern California and no one knows why.

Cut off from the outside world, those that are left are trapped, and there's no help on the way. Sam Temple and his friends must do all they can to survive. Chaos rules the streets. Gangs begin to form. Sides are chosen - strong or weak. Cruel or humane.

And then there are those who…


Book cover of Ashfall

Christopher Joubert Why did I love this book?

This is one of the novels I read in high school that stuck with me. Mike Mullin’s Ashfall is a story about a supervolcano that erupts and causes unimaginable terror and chaos for a vast amount of the population. The unfortunate event that takes place in this novel opened my eyes to the power of Mother Nature. My own novel centers around an apocalyptic rain event; Ashfall is comparable to my own book in a way that shows how quickly Mother Nature can become deadly when angered.

By Mike Mullin,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Ashfall as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Many visitors to Yellowstone National Park don't realize that the boiling hot springs and spraying geysers are caused by an underlying supervolcano, so large that the caldera can only be seen by plane or satellite. And by some scientific measurements, it could be overdue for an eruption. For Alex, being left alone for the weekend means having the freedom to play computer games and hang out with his friends without hassle from his mother. Then the Yellowstone supervolcano erupts, plunging his hometown into a nightmare of darkness, ash, and violence. Alex begins a harrowing trek to seach for his family…


Book cover of The Marbury Lens

Christopher Joubert Why did I love this book?

The Marbury Lens is one of the most terrifying books I’ve ever read. Andrew Smith created the world of Marbury in such a way that stuck with me years after reading it. It teaches readers not to easily trust people and that one wrong decision can lead to a downward spiral into insanity. The apocalyptic wasteland of Marbury was vividly brought to life in all of its morbid glory. The creatures in this novel were grotesque and horrifying. I’d like to see them go head to head with the villains in my novel, the threaders.

By Andrew Smith,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Marbury Lens as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 14, 15, 16, and 17.

What is this book about?

A 16-year-old boy who escapes a kidnapper thinks he can forget his trauma, but instead, he loses his grip on reality and believes he's part of an alternate world called Marbury.

Sixteen-year-old Jack gets drunk and is in the wrong place at the wrong time. He is kidnapped. He escapes, narrowly. The only person he tells is his best friend, Conner. When they arrive in London as planned for summer break, a stranger hands Jack a pair of glasses. Through the lenses, he sees another world called Marbury.

There is war in Marbury. It is a desolate and murderous place…


Book cover of Dark Inside

Christopher Joubert Why did I love this book?

Dark Inside centers around a series of powerful earthquakes that shake every continent on Earth and awakens a supernatural inner rage within people. The concept of this novel is incredibly fascinating and is another novel that shows the power of Mother Nature - with a twist. After the earthquakes, the world descends into a hellish landscape that, at times, eerily mirrors events that have taken place in the real world. The apocalypse is brought on by the evilness of humanity, which makes it an interesting read. 

By Jeyn Roberts,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Dark Inside as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 13, 14, 15, and 16.

What is this book about?

Moments after several huge earthquakes shake every continent on Earth, something strange starts happening to some people. Michael can only watch in horror as an incidence of road rage so extreme it ends in two deaths unfolds before his eyes; Clementine finds herself being hunted through the small town she has lived in all her life, by people she has known all her life; and Mason is attacked with a baseball bat by a random stranger. An inner rage has been released and some people cannot fight it. For those who can, life becomes an ongoing battle to survive -…


Book cover of Lockdown

Christopher Joubert Why did I love this book?

Although this novel is not necessarily ‘apocalyptic,’ I couldn’t help but include it. Alexander Gordon Smith’s Lockdown is a high-stakes novel that follows Alex, a teenager who is wrongly accused of murder and sentenced to an underground prison. The Furnace Penitentiary is not a normal prison, but is a building where inhumane experiments take place. I’ve always been fascinated by characters who have to survive in an environment they cannot physically leave, and the Escape from Furnace series does this beautifully.

By Alexander Gordon Smith,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Lockdown as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 12, 13, 14, and 15.

What is this book about?

Prison Break meets Darren Shan in an unforgettable story of terror, evil and intrigue. Alexander Gordon Smith's cult teen series has been reissued with the bestselling US covers.

Beneath heaven is hell.
Beneath hell is Furnace.

When thirteen-year-old Alex is framed for murder, his life changes forever. Now he is an inmate in the Furnace Penitentiary - the toughest prison in the world for young offenders. A vast building sunk deep into the ground, there's one way in and no way out.

But rowdy inmates and sadistic guards are the least of Alex's problems. Every night an inmate is taken…


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Let Evening Come

By Yvonne Osborne,

Book cover of Let Evening Come

Yvonne Osborne Author Of Let Evening Come

New book alert!

Why am I passionate about this?

I grew up on a family farm surrounded by larger vegetable and dairy operations that used migrant labor. From an early age, my siblings and I were acquainted with the children of these workers, children whom we shared a school desk with one day and were gone the next. On summer vacations, our parents hauled us around in a station wagon with a popup camper, which they parked in out-of-the-way hayfields and on mountainous plateaus, shunning, much to our chagrin, normal campgrounds, and swimming pools. Thus, I grew up exposed to different cultures and environments. My writing reflects my parents’ curiosity, love of books and travel, and devotion to the natural world. 

Yvonne's book list on immersive coming-of-age fiction with characters struggling to find themselves amidst the isolation and bigotry in Indigenous, rural, and minority communities

What is my book about?

After her mother is killed in a rare Northern Michigan tornado, Sadie Wixom is left with only her father and grandfather to guide her through young adulthood. Miles away in western Saskatchewan, Stefan Montegrand and his Indigenous family are displaced from their land by multinational energy companies. They are taken in temporarily by Sadie’s aunt, a human rights activist who heads a cultural exchange program.

Stefan promptly runs afoul of local authority, but Sadie, intrigued by him and captivated by his story, has grown sympathetic to his cause and complicit in his pushback against prejudiced accusations. Their mutual attraction is stymied when Stefan’s older brother, Joachim, who stayed behind, becomes embroiled in the resistance, and Stefan is compelled to return to Canada. Sadie, concerned for his safety, impulsively follows on a trajectory doomed by cultural misunderstanding and oncoming winter.

Let Evening Come

By Yvonne Osborne,

What is this book about?

After her mother is killed in a rare Northern Michigan tornado, Sadie Wixom is left with only her father and grandfather to guide her through the pitfalls of young adulthood.
Hundreds of miles away in western Saskatchewan, Stefan Montegrand and his Indigenous family are forced off their land by multinational energy companies and flawed treaties. They are taken in temporarily by Sadie's aunt, a human rights activist who heads a cultural exchange program.
Stefan, whose own father died in prison while on a hunger strike, promptly runs afoul of local authority, but Sadie, intrigued by him and captivated by his…


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