95 books like Hell Divers

By Nicholas Sansbury Smith,

Here are 95 books that Hell Divers fans have personally recommended if you like Hell Divers. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Tribes of Decay: A Zombie Novel

Sunshine Somerville Author Of The Kota

From my list on science fiction and fantasy world-building.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been pulled to rich, deep, complex fiction all my life. And I started building my own world when I was nine, adding to The Kota Series over two decades. Even while getting an English Literature degree, I was bored by simple worlds, characters, and stories and always found myself more interested in unique books and fresh reads. Really, the weirder the world, the better! That’s what I’ve continued to look for as a reader, and I’ve been lucky to encounter new authors that a lot of people might not have heard about yet. I’ve found some real world-building gems, like these I’ve discussed. I hope to find many more!

Sunshine's book list on science fiction and fantasy world-building

Sunshine Somerville Why did Sunshine love this book?

I love everything this author does because his world-building is simple but perfect. The post-apocalyptic world-building in this story involves not only a description of mass desolation but also how that desolation has changed humanity. Of course, people are going to be affected by their environment – especially under post-apocalyptic circumstances – and too often I feel like characters in post-apocalyptic fiction are just the same as people today. 

Zombie worlds all have the same familiar feel, but I really liked the idea of how “tribes” of survivors had formed in cities and how these people had reverted to more primitive ways – if the world hadn’t functioned in decades, yeah, teens wouldn’t know about electricity. The world-building in this book covers everything from setting to characters to a strange new social structure that was really intriguing.

By Michael W. Garza,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Our world decayed and a new world arose from the ashes of the old. The remains of the human race cling to life decades after a decimating global plague. The infected hunt the living as the dead roam abandoned streets craving the taste of flesh. Mia and Rowan hoped to carve out a life for themselves in an apocalyptic wasteland, but fate had other plans. They're forced to leave behind the relative safety of their home after a chance encounter challenges everything they've ever known. Evolution always finds a way...


Book cover of Idyll

Sunshine Somerville Author Of The Kota

From my list on science fiction and fantasy world-building.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been pulled to rich, deep, complex fiction all my life. And I started building my own world when I was nine, adding to The Kota Series over two decades. Even while getting an English Literature degree, I was bored by simple worlds, characters, and stories and always found myself more interested in unique books and fresh reads. Really, the weirder the world, the better! That’s what I’ve continued to look for as a reader, and I’ve been lucky to encounter new authors that a lot of people might not have heard about yet. I’ve found some real world-building gems, like these I’ve discussed. I hope to find many more!

Sunshine's book list on science fiction and fantasy world-building

Sunshine Somerville Why did Sunshine love this book?

This is one of the very few books that made me yelp out loud in surprise when the twist happened, and I will forever recommend it because of how unique it was. The feel is reflective of The Road with the main part of the story showing a pained journey through a dangerous landscape. It also feels post-apocalyptic as these survivors struggle to cross the abandoned world that’s been overtaken by nature. The author wrote in a unique language that makes Idyll feel otherworldly but familiar too. All this blends together for really great world-building. I don’t want to give anything away, but there is a definite twist where the whole story flips into something different. You go from feeling like this is a Western to suddenly — Oh, yep, there’s the sci-fi!  

By James Derry,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Hold on tight for a New-Adult Sci-Fi Adventure that’s caught in the crossfire between Westworld and Cormac McCarthy’s The Road!

Idyll is a rugged planet—a new, simpler start for some 10,000 settlers who have fled Mother Earth. But a strange ‘plague’ of contagious sleep has devastated their Settlement, sparked by a mysterious mantra called the Lullaby.

After a three-year quarantine, Walt and Samuel Starboard set out from their ranch on a mission to cure their comatose mother and find their missing father. For days they ride through a blighted landscape: deserted cabins and gravestones and the ruins of towns destroyed…


Book cover of The Running Game

Sunshine Somerville Author Of The Kota

From my list on science fiction and fantasy world-building.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been pulled to rich, deep, complex fiction all my life. And I started building my own world when I was nine, adding to The Kota Series over two decades. Even while getting an English Literature degree, I was bored by simple worlds, characters, and stories and always found myself more interested in unique books and fresh reads. Really, the weirder the world, the better! That’s what I’ve continued to look for as a reader, and I’ve been lucky to encounter new authors that a lot of people might not have heard about yet. I’ve found some real world-building gems, like these I’ve discussed. I hope to find many more!

Sunshine's book list on science fiction and fantasy world-building

Sunshine Somerville Why did Sunshine love this book?

Some dystopian books show futures that aren’t relatable or believable at all. The whole story is a great mix of genres – not just dystopian but also sci-fi, thriller, and it reads like a crime novel with mobsters.  The reachers themselves are telepathic/telekinetic and add a unique dimension to a story that otherwise could fit in with a non-fantasy setting. The world-building in this book is so effective exactly because it feels real. I was sucked in and sympathetic toward the reachers because you can easily put many different peoples in their place today, and the political and social aspects of the story feel frighteningly possible.

By L E Fitzpatrick,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Rachel’s father called it the running game. Count the exits, calculate the routes, and always be ready to run. She is a Reacher, wanted by the government and the criminal underworld for her psionic powers.

Charlie and his brother John have a reputation for accomplishing the impossible. But after losing his family, Charlie is a broken mess and John is barely keeping him afloat. In desperation, they take a job from a ruthless crime lord, only to discover the girl they are hunting is a Reacher. One of their own kind.

With the help of dangerous and dubious allies, can…


Book cover of Magic-Price

D. Wallace Peach Author Of The Ferryman and the Sea Witch

From my list on lyrical writing that will make you swoon.

Why am I passionate about this?

During my childhood summers, my dad bought thrift-store paperbacks by the bagful, and fantastical stories filled my shady hammock days. Now as an author, writing and reading go hand in hand. There’s no better way to improve my prose and hone my personal style than to read books I love. My trusty highlighter immortalizes the lyrical passages that I swoon over, those luscious words that slip from the tongue, make music in my ears, and paint scenes behind my eyes. I’m swept away by gorgeous language despite the genre, though fantasy books usher in summer memories and a lovely time of idleness when there was nothing to do but read.

D. Wallace's book list on lyrical writing that will make you swoon

D. Wallace Peach Why did D. Wallace love this book?

The Crown of Stone series is an undiscovered gem in grim-dark fantasy, and Magic-Price is the book that kicked it off. Grim-dark fantasy isn’t often associated with lyrical writing, which made this book a rare find. It’s violent, contains profanity and a few scenes of erotica, and has a great anti-hero, but it’s also beautifully written with rich imagery, vivid descriptions, and a wrenching emotional fullness that stuck with me for days after closing the last page. I loved the flow and how all this luscious writing contrasted with the brutality of the characters and story. All that and a fabulous ending to the series too.

By C.L. Schneider,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Magic-Price as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Born of a fallen race, forced into combat at an early age, Ian Troy knew little but the brutality of war. A hope for more was born when, on the brink of defeat, an instrument of victory fell into his hands. Unaware of its true nature, Ian wielded the Crown of Stones, an ancient relic of untold power. He cast, wanting only an end to the conflict tearing the lands apart. Fate had other plans.

A decade later, Ian is still haunted by that tragic day. Running from the blood in his veins and on his hands, he struggles to…


Book cover of Commune: Book 1

Devon C Ford Author Of Survival

From my list on current post-apocalyptic series.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve long had a passion (read: obsession) with the apocalypse in whatever form it takes. I’ve written viral pandemics, zombie outbreaks, post-nuclear survival, dystopian totalitarianism, extinction-level-event, alien invasion, WW3… all of them have the theme of the great reset. The ability to reinvent yourself in the new world. The erasure of your life and the clean slate to try again and become who you want to be. I read and listen to this genre as well as write it because I'm passionate about the worlds writers create and the way their characters adapt to overcome the challenges my own have faced. As a former police officer, I’ve probably spent too many night shifts pondering the end of the world.

Devon's book list on current post-apocalyptic series

Devon C Ford Why did Devon love this book?

Joshua is another author with multiple series, but Commune is a standout piece of literature. His style is subtle and suggestive, making the reader pay attention so they don’t miss the nuances and the snippets of backstory. That said, his action sequences are fast and brutal with a realism that hits home. The humour of the characters throughout is so genuine it’s a stroke of brilliance.

Full disclosure – I loved this series so much I’m writing more Commune with him!

By Joshua Gayou,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The world has ended.

A few have survived.

But is survival worth the loss of humanity?

Finding a friend in the apocalypse isn't easy, and for Jake Martin, it's been damn-near impossible.

Life has become an endless trek for canned food, shelter, and avoiding those who've turned to killing for anything all while trying not to become a killer himself.

When Jake encounters Billy, an elderly wanderer on the highway to ruined Las Vegas, everything changes. Billy reminds him of life before the world ended, of when being human meant acting like more than a mindless beast. Although their bond…


Book cover of Mountain Man

Devon C Ford Author Of Survival

From my list on current post-apocalyptic series.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve long had a passion (read: obsession) with the apocalypse in whatever form it takes. I’ve written viral pandemics, zombie outbreaks, post-nuclear survival, dystopian totalitarianism, extinction-level-event, alien invasion, WW3… all of them have the theme of the great reset. The ability to reinvent yourself in the new world. The erasure of your life and the clean slate to try again and become who you want to be. I read and listen to this genre as well as write it because I'm passionate about the worlds writers create and the way their characters adapt to overcome the challenges my own have faced. As a former police officer, I’ve probably spent too many night shifts pondering the end of the world.

Devon's book list on current post-apocalyptic series

Devon C Ford Why did Devon love this book?

Keith gripped me with his Mountain Man series. If ever there was a reluctant hero who accidentally self-sabotages often, one who is so real and relatable that you can’t help but love him, then Keith’s Gus character is for you. Tackling the zombie apocalypse from the point of view of a regular, everyday man, this series grabs hold and doesn’t let go.

By Keith C. Blackmore,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Boomstick.Samurai bat.Motorcycle leather.And the will to live amongst the unliving.Augustus Berry lives a day-to-day existence comprised of waking up, getting drunk, and preparing for the inevitable day when "they" will come up the side of his mountain and penetrate his fortress. Living on the outskirts of a city and scavenging for whatever supplies remain since the demise of civilization, Gus knows that his next visit to undead suburbia could be his last. Not only does he face a corpse-infested urban hell, human scavengers, and unending loneliness, but now a new mystery has risen...The undead are disappearing from the streets.A force…


Book cover of Arisen, Book One: Fortress Britain

Devon C Ford Author Of Survival

From my list on current post-apocalyptic series.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve long had a passion (read: obsession) with the apocalypse in whatever form it takes. I’ve written viral pandemics, zombie outbreaks, post-nuclear survival, dystopian totalitarianism, extinction-level-event, alien invasion, WW3… all of them have the theme of the great reset. The ability to reinvent yourself in the new world. The erasure of your life and the clean slate to try again and become who you want to be. I read and listen to this genre as well as write it because I'm passionate about the worlds writers create and the way their characters adapt to overcome the challenges my own have faced. As a former police officer, I’ve probably spent too many night shifts pondering the end of the world.

Devon's book list on current post-apocalyptic series

Devon C Ford Why did Devon love this book?

I’m referring to his Arisen series here. There hasn’t been a zombie epic of this calibre ever. It’s a fast-paced, high-octane kinetic blast through the apocalypse, told from (mainly) the point of view of tier-one operators. The way the characters evolve alongside the virus is so engaging that if anyone asked me to give them a run-down of the series I’d prepare a PowerPoint presentation and organise catering. This series does not quit, and the individuality of the characters will make you cry, laugh, and definitely spit your coffee out.

By Glynn James, Michael Stephen Fuchs,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

With nearly a million copies sold and a 4.7/5.0-★ average on over 50,000 reviews, the ARISEN series is said by readers to be: "a non stop thrill ride" ... "unputdownable" ... "the most original and well-written zombie novels I have ever read" ... "riveting as hell - I cannot recommend this series enough" ... "Knock Down Drag Out FANTASTIC!!!!!!" ... "Wow. Just wow." ... "the action starts hot and heavy and does NOT let up" ... "astonishingly well-researched and highly plausible" ... "non-stop speed rush! All action, all the time" ... "left me with my mouth hanging open" ... "May…


Book cover of ZC One

Devon C Ford Author Of Survival

From my list on current post-apocalyptic series.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve long had a passion (read: obsession) with the apocalypse in whatever form it takes. I’ve written viral pandemics, zombie outbreaks, post-nuclear survival, dystopian totalitarianism, extinction-level-event, alien invasion, WW3… all of them have the theme of the great reset. The ability to reinvent yourself in the new world. The erasure of your life and the clean slate to try again and become who you want to be. I read and listen to this genre as well as write it because I'm passionate about the worlds writers create and the way their characters adapt to overcome the challenges my own have faced. As a former police officer, I’ve probably spent too many night shifts pondering the end of the world.

Devon's book list on current post-apocalyptic series

Devon C Ford Why did Devon love this book?

Chris may not be the most notable in this list, but his place is deserving. So often – and I’m guilty of this too – the zombie apocalypse is tackled head-on by a team of superhuman snake eaters. While this makes for great fiction, there’s also a beauty in showing how the average person would fare. Chris’ Zombie Castle series, and also his EMP trilogy UKD, gives the reader that perspective. It’s almost a happy apocalypse, a feel-good end of the world, and shows characters who keep their spirits up no matter what they face.

By Chris Harris,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

It was intended to eradicate the common cold; instead it eradicated most of the human race.A genetically modified virus killer mutates, transforming everyone it infects into zombies. As it rapidly spreads across the globe, small groups of survivors battle to stay alive and escape the growing hordes of flesh eaters.Tom, Becky and their two children are on a family holiday when the virus hits. Follow them as they try to fight their way to safety, gathering others along the way.They soon realise that their best chance of survival will be to reach an ancient symbol of power and strength.Their future…


Book cover of The Deltoid Pumpkin Seed

Mark Spivak Author Of Friend of the Devil

From my list on human obsession.

Why am I passionate about this?

From an early age, it became obvious there were two types of people in the world. There were those who played it safe, who sold life insurance or worked for the government, who took their kids to soccer games and dutifully hosted Thanksgiving dinner. Then there were those who were haunted and driven by inner forces they couldn’t begin to understand. After realizing that I fell into the second category, I discovered many kindred spirits who had written books. While some of them sugar-coated their stories into “page-turners” or “beach reads,” the core of human obsession was unmistakable. I resolved to explore the outer edge of that obsession.

Mark's book list on human obsession

Mark Spivak Why did Mark love this book?

When most people think of dirigibles, they’re reminded of either the Goodyear Blimp or (if they’re old enough) the crash of the Hindenburg. However, there’s a small band of fanatics who are dedicated to the quest for lighter-than-air flying. For these folks, the subject is more compelling than the Holy Grail, and they devote decades of their lives and the bulk of their resources to prove to the public that dirigibles should come back and replace jet aviation. A true story, and a fascinating read.

By John McPhee,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

This is the fascinating story of the dream of a completely new aircraft, a hybrid of the plane and the rigid airship - huge, wingless, moving slowly through the lower sky. John McPhee chronicles the perhaps unfathomable perseverance of the aircraft's sucessive progenitors.


Book cover of Pimp My Airship: A Naptown by Airship Novel

Errick Nunnally Author Of All The Dead Men: Alexander Smith #2

From my list on history to thrill, disturb, and intrigue.

Why am I passionate about this?

Errick Nunnally was born and raised in Boston, Massachusetts, and served one tour in the Marine Corps before deciding art school was a safer pursuit. He enjoys art, comics, and genre novels. A graphic designer, he has trained in Krav Maga and Muay Thai kickboxing. His work has appeared in several anthologies of speculative fiction. His work can be found in Apex Magazine, Fiyah Magazine, Galaxy’s Edge, Lamplight, Nightlight Podcast, and the novels, Lightning Wears a Red Cape, Blood for the Sun, and All the Dead Men.

Errick's book list on history to thrill, disturb, and intrigue

Errick Nunnally Why did Errick love this book?

I don’t often read “steampunk” because it usually reflects the Victorian era of England or a ‘what if’ scenario involving the Confederacy and I’m just sick to death of the subjects. Along came “steamfunk,” an addition to the genre where the focus wouldn’t be on exclusively white characters, but Black sourced from the African continent. Then once upon a time, Broaddus cracked a joke on Twitter: “I’m going to write a steampunk story with an all-Black cast and call it ‘Pimp My Airship.’ To his chagrin (and eventual delight) several editors asked to see the story. The worldbuilding in this story is phenomenal. It take place in Indiana, part of an alternate history where England has established a “United States of Albion” and Native Americans have managed to retain a sizeable chunk of territory. There’s so much more to the book in relation to history and cultural norms. I thoroughly…

By Maurice Broaddus,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Warning: Don’t Believe the Hype!

All the poet called Sleepy wants to do is spit his verses, smoke chiba, and stay off the COP’s radar—all of which becomes impossible once he encounters a professional protestor known as (120 Degrees of) Knowledge Allah. They soon find themselves on the wrong side of local authorities and have to elude the powers that be.

When young heiress Sophine Jefferson’s father is murdered, the careful life she’d been constructing for herself tumbles around her. She’s quickly drawn into a web of intrigue, politics and airships, joining with Sleepy and Knowledge Allah in a fight…


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