42 books like Bad Island

By Stanley Donwood,

Here are 42 books that Bad Island fans have personally recommended if you like Bad Island. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of The Plague

Ty Roth Author Of Island No. 6

From my list on medical thrillers for doomsday phobics.

Why am I passionate about this?

Although I come from a family with a number of medical professionals, I am not one myself. My interest in medical thrillers is a three-strand braid that combines my learning and experiences in the fields of sociology, literature, and storytelling. Horrific as the stories on this list are, they share both a hopefulness that mankind is capable of overcoming whatever challenge nature presents, or they themselves conjure and a warning to get ourselves right before the next one comes along. At a time when it is tempting to despair over the human condition, I hope these books inspire your faith in mankind’s resourcefulness and ability to endure.

Ty's book list on medical thrillers for doomsday phobics

Ty Roth Why did Ty love this book?

I especially love this novel as Camus applies his background in existential philosophy to elevate the medical thriller genre into the realm of the metaphysical.

I love how the novel uses the plot device of an outbreak of the plague to force me as a reader to move  beyond the surface questions of “What?” “When?” and “Where?” to ask the deeper question of “Why?” and “What now?”

By Albert Camus,

Why should I read it?

10 authors picked The Plague as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

“Its relevance lashes you across the face.” —Stephen Metcalf, The Los Angeles Times • “A redemptive book, one that wills the reader to believe, even in a time of despair.” —Roger Lowenstein, The Washington Post 

A haunting tale of human resilience and hope in the face of unrelieved horror, Albert Camus' iconic novel about an epidemic ravaging the people of a North African coastal town is a classic of twentieth-century literature. 

The townspeople of Oran are in the grip of a deadly plague, which condemns its victims to a swift and horrifying death. Fear, isolation and claustrophobia follow as they…


Book cover of The End Is Always Near: Apocalyptic Moments, from the Bronze Age Collapse to Nuclear Near Misses

Darrel Perkins Author Of The End Is At Hand

From my list on to read as the world crumbles around us.

Why am I passionate about this?

Like most people, I started to think about the end of the world during the COVID-19 pandemic. Instead of learning how to bake sourdough bread, I read stories and made art about the apocalypse. The true and catastrophic experiences of people throughout history interested me so much that the project turned into a book. My background in printmaking and illustration has formed my approach to visualizing narrative scenes using crisp black and white linocut prints. My current position as a studio art professor has given me practice in providing information concisely. I try to entertain as much as inform. 

Darrel's book list on to read as the world crumbles around us

Darrel Perkins Why did Darrel love this book?

Dan Carlin is here to get the facts straight. The wildly intelligent and passionate historian released this book while I was working on mine, and it was a great resource for me. I’d recommend it to anyone looking to educate themselves on how civilizations fail. Hint: We keep making the same mistakes again. Read this and break the pattern!

By Dan Carlin,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The End Is Always Near as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A journey back in time that explores what happened-and what could have happened-from creator of the wildly-popular podcast Hardcore History and 2019 winner of the iHeartRadio Best History Podcast Award.

Dan Carlin has created a new way to think about the past. His mega-hit podcast, Hardcore History, is revered for its unique blend of high drama, enthralling narration, and Twilight Zone-style twists. Carlin humanizes the past, wondering about things that didn't happen but might have, and compels his listeners to "walk a mile in that other guy's historical moccasins." A political commentator, Carlin approaches history like a magician, employing completely…


Book cover of Mr. Burns

Darrel Perkins Author Of The End Is At Hand

From my list on to read as the world crumbles around us.

Why am I passionate about this?

Like most people, I started to think about the end of the world during the COVID-19 pandemic. Instead of learning how to bake sourdough bread, I read stories and made art about the apocalypse. The true and catastrophic experiences of people throughout history interested me so much that the project turned into a book. My background in printmaking and illustration has formed my approach to visualizing narrative scenes using crisp black and white linocut prints. My current position as a studio art professor has given me practice in providing information concisely. I try to entertain as much as inform. 

Darrel's book list on to read as the world crumbles around us

Darrel Perkins Why did Darrel love this book?

A little levity may be required as we watch the world crumble around us. Anne Washburn’s play reads as a multi-generational game of telephone. Beginning shortly after the apocalypse, with television now obsolete, people gather round a campfire and begin retelling what they remember from random episodes of The Simpsons. In the second act, the retelling has evolved into an oral tradition far from the original. By the third act, we’re eighty years removed from the apocalypse, and the story has become its own bizarre and surreal performance. I read Mr. Burns and saw the play in person years ago, but I still think about it and laugh. It might also somehow be a fairly accurate depiction of our post-apocalyptic world.

By Anne Washburn,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

It's the end of everything in contemporary America. A future without power. But what will survive? Mr Burns asks how the stories we tell make us the people we are, explodes the boundaries between pop and high culture and, when society has crumbled, imagines the future for America's most famous family.


Book cover of Encyclopaedia of Hell: An Invasion Manual for Demons Concerning the Planet Earth and the Human Race Which Infests It

Darrel Perkins Author Of The End Is At Hand

From my list on to read as the world crumbles around us.

Why am I passionate about this?

Like most people, I started to think about the end of the world during the COVID-19 pandemic. Instead of learning how to bake sourdough bread, I read stories and made art about the apocalypse. The true and catastrophic experiences of people throughout history interested me so much that the project turned into a book. My background in printmaking and illustration has formed my approach to visualizing narrative scenes using crisp black and white linocut prints. My current position as a studio art professor has given me practice in providing information concisely. I try to entertain as much as inform. 

Darrel's book list on to read as the world crumbles around us

Darrel Perkins Why did Darrel love this book?

Big plans for the afterlife? Go prepared. Martin Olson’s Encyclopaedia of Hell and its sequel Encyclopaedia of Heaven can answer all your questions about God, the Devil, and whatever mess we’re currently stuck in. Every page is uniquely designed, entertaining, and beautifully illustrated. To remind you not to take the End so seriously, it satirizes the hell out of our world. Like my favorite things in life, it manages to be both dark and funny.

By Martin Olson, Tony Millionaire (illustrator), Mahendra Singh (illustrator)

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

A tour de force of darkness, Encyclopaedia of Hell is a manual of Earth written by Lord Satan for his invading hordes of demons, complete with hundreds of unpleasant illustrations, diagrams, and a comprehensive and utterly repulsive dictionary of Earth terms.

Since the customs and mores of humanity are alien and inconceivable to demons, Satan wrote this strangely poetic military handbook for the enlightenment and edification of his demon armies. A masterpiece expressing Satan's hatred for humanity and himself, the Encyclopaedia includes "Techniques of Stalking and Eating Humans," "Methods of Canning Human Pus," and "Dicing and Slicing Orphaned Children."

Why…


Book cover of 14

Ricardo Henriquez Author Of The Catcher's Trap

From my list on those who love a good nightmare.

Why am I passionate about this?

I write horror, read horror, watch horror, and live horror. The last one may be a bit of an exaggeration. When I was 10 years old, I begged my parents to take me to the theater to see Friday the 13: The Final Chapter. Of course, they said no. When I was 14, and a horror rebel, I sneaked into a movie theater to watch Friday the 13: New Blood. Thank goodness when they said The Final Chapter, they didn’t mean it. It was around this age that I discovered Stephen King’s Salem’s Lot; that book changed my life for good. I can talk to you about horror books for hours and hours.

Ricardo's book list on those who love a good nightmare

Ricardo Henriquez Why did Ricardo love this book?

This blend of horror, mystery, and coming-of-age novel is a perfect summer read. I actually read this book while laying on a hammock in my backyard. The characters are likable, the mystery is intriguing, and the love story weave in the middle is endearing. You won’t have heart palpitations reading this book, but I can assure you that weird dreams will be part of the experience. 

By Peter Clines,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked 14 as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Padlocked doors. Strange light fixtures. Mutant cockroaches. There are some odd things about Nate's new apartment.


Book cover of The Vagrant

James Dwyer Author Of The Memory of Blades

From my list on fantasy with dark humour and light entertainment.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a writer by day and martial arts instructor by night, so when not spending time with my wife and kids, I love nothing more than to read, write, and fight. My favourite books are the ones filled with irreverent characters, who can smirk and joke at any grim situation, laughing the light of entertainment through the darkest of ordeals. These are the type of books I’m always drawn to, both in writing and in reading, where I can imagine taking any standout character and dropping them into a completely different book, then sitting back to watch the chaos they could make.

James' book list on fantasy with dark humour and light entertainment

James Dwyer Why did James love this book?

A Newman on the scene and, atrocious pun aside, Peter Newman redefines what it is for an author to have a fresh voice, especially since his lead character in The Vagrant speaks all of one word. And that’s one word per book if you go on to read the trilogy, which you will, because this novel is amazing. 

What more can you ask for when it comes to dark humour and light entertainment than a man traversing a poisoned world – filled with tainted humans, half-breed demons, and twisted infernals – and his companions on this journey are none other than a belligerent goat and a new-born baby. None of them speak, yet all three pull you into their hearts and them into yours.

An eye opens. A book is read. A reader becomes a Newman fan.

By Peter Newman,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The Vagrant is his name. He has no other.

Years have passed since humanity's destruction emerged from the Breach.

Friendless and alone he walks across a desolate, war-torn landscape.

As each day passes the world tumbles further into depravity, bent and twisted by the new order, corrupted by the Usurper, the enemy, and his infernal horde.

His purpose is to reach the Shining City, last bastion of the human race, and deliver the only weapon that may make a difference in the ongoing war.

What little hope remains is dying. Abandoned by its leader, The Seven, and its heroes, The…


Book cover of Stories of the Apocalypse

Neil A. Cohen Author Of Exit Zero

From my list on zombie books for start and stop readers.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have been fascinated by the zombie genre since I was a child. No other genre has influenced and inspired me as much. I am also a very critical consumer of zombie content, as I have great respect for the genre. I began writing my own stories to fill in gaps that I felt had not yet been addressed by previous works.  Since the release of my first novel, I have enjoyed meeting with zombie genre fans, writers, crafters, and creators at horror cons, zombie cons, comic cons and have participated in many panels and podcasts. It is a subject that I will never grow tired of discussing. The zombie genre is truly undying. 

Neil's book list on zombie books for start and stop readers

Neil A. Cohen Why did Neil love this book?

Wastelands is an anthology of short stories, all obviously focused on the apocalypse, but not all including zombies. One memorable story was titled When Sysadmins Ruled the Earth by Cory Doctorow, which features the communications between tech geeks who are safely ensconced within blast-resistant data hosting centers when the apocalypse begins. Working in server hosting centers are equipped with their own power sources, air filtering systems, and an abundance of junk food vending machines, the author creates a scenario where truly the geeks shall inherit the earth.

By John Joseph Adams (editor),

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The definitive anthology of the best post-apocalyptic literature of the last two decades. Featuring New York Times bestsellers Stephen King, George R.R. Martin and Orson Scott Card, edited by award-winning anthologist John Joseph Adams.

Prescient tales of Armageddon and its aftermath, by twenty-two of today's finest writers, including:

Paolo Bacigalupi
Neal Barrett, Jr.
Tobias S. Buckell
Cory Doctorow
David Grigg
Dale Bailey
Elizabeth Bear
Richard Kadrey
John Langan
Jerry Oltion
James Van Pelt

Together they reveal what it will mean to survive and remain human after the end of the world...


Book cover of Father Elijah: An Apocalypse

Carlo Kennedy Author Of Time Signature

From my list on fiction with a Christian worldview.

Why am I passionate about this?

As an Irish-Italian-American, I’ve got a lifetime of cultural and family traditions to bring to the table, and I want that in the books I read. I love books that celebrate the beauty of life, love, family, and creation. A novel can open up the world, and uplift the reader, adding joy to life – that’s what I’m looking for when I read, and I imagine others, too, want uplifting stories. That doesn’t mean preachy or sanctimonious – stories should be about real imperfect people who sometimes fall short of the ideal – but I definitely want stories that take place in a universe where God, and right and wrong, exist. 

Carlo's book list on fiction with a Christian worldview

Carlo Kennedy Why did Carlo love this book?

In this book, the author speculates about the events that could give rise to the anti-Christ, and a few brave souls who might try to stop his rise to power.

But this is not your grandfather’s end-times fiction. It’s deeply entrenched in actual events of the late twentieth and early twenty-first century, and the story is eminently plausible.

It’s not about world wars or secret underground Christian armies – it’s about how pride is conquered by humility, how the biggest things the devil can throw at us are defeated by the holiness of unknown saints.

This is the real deal. You will not want to put it down!

By Michael O'Brien,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Michael O'Brien presents a thrilling apocalyptic novel about the condition of the Roman Catholic Church at the end of time. It explores the state of the modern world, and the strengths and weaknesses of the contemporary religious scene, by taking his central character, Father Elijah Schafer, a Carmelite priest, on a secret mission for the Vatican which embroils him in a series of crises and subterfuges affecting the ultimate destiny of the Church.

Father Elijah is a convert from Judaism, a survivor of the Holocaust, a man once powerful in Israel. For twenty years he has been "buried in the…


Book cover of Zombocalypse Now

James Schannep Author Of Infected (Click Your Poison)

From my list on drop dead hilarious zombie books.

Why am I passionate about this?

Having completed military survival courses as well as stints in an improv comedy troupe, James Schannep knows the best zombie stories are those presented with a wry grin while staring down the end of the world. The product of an overactive imagination, the genre-hopping Click Your Poison series puts you in the driver’s seat against zombies, pirates, international spies, a detective whodunit, superheroes (and villains), exploration through a haunted house, and more! 

James' book list on drop dead hilarious zombie books

James Schannep Why did James love this book?

This is another interactive, choose-your-path zombie book that I discovered after I’d published Infected. It’s off-the-wall zany. You play as a stuffed bunny who wields a chainsaw in the apocalypse. If most zombie stories are caused by viral pandemics these days, then Zombocalypse Now must be the resultant lucid fever dream. If you like nonsequiturs, this is the zombie book for you. 

By Matt Youngmark,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

You're a stuffed bunny and it's the end of the world.Between you and safety are forty or fifty zombies gorging themselves on the flesh of the living. If you disguise yourself as one of them and try to sneak past the feeding frenzy, turn to page 183. If you grab a tire iron, flip out and get medieval on their undead asses, turn to page 11.Zombocalypse Now is a comedy/horror reimagining of the choose-your-own-ending books you grew up with. You'll be confronted with undead hordes, internet dating, improper police procedure, and the very real danger that you'll lose your grip…


Book cover of Angelfall

Linda Lee Author Of Cursed

From my list on unconventional YA apocalyptic fantasy.

Why am I passionate about this?

As we watch the news–the increasing number of earthquakes, volcanoes, wars, inflation, the rapid progress of AI, unelected elites deciding they know best for the world, and more–we don’t know how to process it all, and it leaves us feeling anxious. My passion for helping my readers not just escape but actually live better fuels me. I created this retelling of the Book of Revelations from the POV of celestial warriors and fallen angels in the unseen realms of our world to allow my readers to “make more sense” of the world and be at peace.

Linda's book list on unconventional YA apocalyptic fantasy

Linda Lee Why did Linda love this book?

Ee, the author, presents a very different image of angels, which is what I love about it. We usually see angels as protective of humans, willing to help us out of jams. In this series, Ee puts angels in the role of destroyers who hunt humans down to kill them.

I fell in love with the main characters. The story features a courageous girl raised by a “whacko” mother who must rescue her wheelchair-bound sister from angels who have abducted her. She encounters a fallen angel who has had his wings hewn off, and together, they form an unlikely alliance, overcoming their own inner demons on the way to “saving the world.” I loved both of their defiant spirits and unwillingness to quit despite the odds.

By Susan Ee,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Angelfall as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

One of Time Magazine's 100 Best Fantasy Books of All Time

It's been six weeks since the angels of the apocalypse destroyed the world as we know it. Only pockets of humanity remain.

Savage street gangs rule the day while fear and superstition rule the night.

When angels fly away with a helpless girl, her seventeen-year-old sister Penryn will do anything to get her back...


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in the end times, Japan, and revenge?

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