The most recommended zombie apocalypse books

Who picked these books? Meet our 78 experts.

78 authors created a book list connected to the zombie apocalypse, and here are their favorite zombie apocalypse books.
Shepherd is reader supported. When you buy books, we may earn an affiliate commission.

What type of zombie apocalypse book?

Loading...
Loading...

Book cover of Deadbreak

Taylor Ellwood Author Of The Zombie Apocalypse Call Center

From my list on if you want to survive a zombie apocalypse.

Who am I?

I love zombie apocalypse fiction and movies and games. There’s something fascinating about survival and post-apocalyptic fiction, where you see the real character and desire of humanity to survive no matter what. I also like the morbid humor that shows up. I started writing the zombie apocalypse call center series as a way to poke fun at my customer support center experiences and mix it in with my own fascination with zombie apocalypses.

Taylor's book list on if you want to survive a zombie apocalypse

Taylor Ellwood Why did Taylor love this book?

An interesting and funny take on the zombie apocalypse.

The main character has a morbid sense of humor and a loyal dog and is trying to find his daughter no matter what it takes.

The story is fast-paced and will keep you wondering what will happen next, as well as discovering what the main character will do to survive the zombies and also get some food.

I enjoyed the balance of humor and action, which kept me reading until the last page.

By Jorge Sanchez,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

It's been three long years since Deadbreak. That's what everyone's calling it – the day the dead rose. Every day since then Jeremiah Reid has had one goal: to make his way back to his daughter. With his four-legged companion, Joe, Jeremiah has to travel a lawless wasteland teeming with zombies, bandits, and worse, like people who put anchovies on pizza (you know who you are). It's a new world out there and no one is safe. People are weary, cities are in ruin, supplies are scarce, and brains are on the menu. If he’s going to have a chance,…


Book cover of Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse: First Aid Kit Building and Mini Med School for Preppers

Steven J. Kirsh Author Of Parenting in the Zombie Apocalypse: The Psychology of Raising Children in a Time of Horror

From my list on surviving a zombie apocalypse.

Who am I?

Like many of my generation, my formal introduction to the zombie genre started with George A. Romero's Night of the Living Dead. Stories of the zombie apocalypse, and the arterial sprays, dismemberments, and eviscerations that accompanied it, have fascinated me ever since. But, I'm also a psychology professor. Although I was initially captivated by the carnage of the undead, I quickly found that the mindsets of the survivors were equally fascinating. More than anything, I love seeing how fictional worlds represent real-world psychological concepts.

Steven's book list on surviving a zombie apocalypse

Steven J. Kirsh Why did Steven love this book?

When the dead roam, this book will function as a med-school, first responder, and training physician all rolled into one. That's a good thing, for medical professionals will be at ground zero for the zombie apocalypse. And most won't survive the first few days of the dead, as preserving life will seem more paramount than preserving death. And by the time staff figure out that both are equally important, it will be too late. Nevertheless, those who survive the apocalypse's initial stages will eventually need medical care. Even a minor wound could prove deadly if poorly cleaned. I found the information and practical advice in the book fascinating and potentially helpful under dire circumstances.

By Ryan Chamberlin,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

THIS IS YOUR BOOK OF SECRETS The one ensuring your survival! If you've been afraid of what's coming, rest easy, those days are over! By cutting the extra and expanding the essential, we've combined the most important sections from our Survival Medicine series, The Prepper Pages, & created this Mini Med School - just for preppers. An apocalypse is inevitable, because the term "Zombie Apocalypse" is a metaphor for expecting the unexpected. By covering hundreds of conditions known to occur frequently in disasters, this book is going to leave you confident with the way you'll react in medical emergencies. It's…


Book cover of Do Zombies Dream of Undead Sheep?: A Neuroscientific View of the Zombie Brain

Steven J. Kirsh Author Of Parenting in the Zombie Apocalypse: The Psychology of Raising Children in a Time of Horror

From my list on surviving a zombie apocalypse.

Who am I?

Like many of my generation, my formal introduction to the zombie genre started with George A. Romero's Night of the Living Dead. Stories of the zombie apocalypse, and the arterial sprays, dismemberments, and eviscerations that accompanied it, have fascinated me ever since. But, I'm also a psychology professor. Although I was initially captivated by the carnage of the undead, I quickly found that the mindsets of the survivors were equally fascinating. More than anything, I love seeing how fictional worlds represent real-world psychological concepts.

Steven's book list on surviving a zombie apocalypse

Steven J. Kirsh Why did Steven love this book?

Work smarter, not harder. If you want to survive a zombie apocalypse, you'll need to understand the behavior of the undead. And it all starts with a necrotic brain. If you know why zombies hunt, infect and kill their victims, you can devise effective strategies for avoiding and moving among the undead and, if necessary, killing them. I loved that the neuroscience in this book is very real, even if the zombies are not (yet). It is one of the best applications of nonfictional content to a fictional world available today — a must-read for lovers of brains, both alive and dead.

By Timothy Verstynen, Bradley Voytek,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Do Zombies Dream of Undead Sheep? as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Even if you've never seen a zombie movie or television show, you could identify an undead ghoul if you saw one. With their endless wandering, lumbering gait, insatiable hunger, antisocial behavior, and apparently memory-less existence, zombies are the walking nightmares of our deepest fears. What do these characteristic behaviors reveal about the inner workings of the zombie mind? Could we diagnose zombism as a neurological condition by studying their behavior? In Do Zombies Dream of Undead Sheep?, neuroscientists and zombie enthusiasts Timothy Verstynen and Bradley Voytek apply their neuro-know-how to dissect the puzzle of what has happened to the zombie…


Book cover of Until the End of the World

Katarina Vance Author Of Dead Heat

From my list on zombie apocalypse romance.

Who am I?

I’ve loved zombie movies since I was a kid and first saw Return of the Living Dead during a slumber party. Since then I’ve watched as many as I could, along with shows like The Walking Dead and Z Nation. The changes in the publishing industry over the past few years have given me something even better – hundreds of amazing books about romance and survival in the zombie apocalypse to read. The five books on my list are the very best of those that eventually inspired me to write my own books. I hope you like them!

Katarina's book list on zombie apocalypse romance

Katarina Vance Why did Katarina love this book?

Sarah Lyons Fleming writes beautiful prose. She also writes characters that you’ll fall in love with (or hate) and want to keep reading about. The main character, Cassie, embarks on an epic journey through the zombie apocalypse for a second chance at love with her ex-fiancee. Along the way, she has to rediscover who she is and grow to overcome everything that the world keeps throwing at her. The action is great, but it’s the relationships between the characters that make this a truly excellent series. I cried my eyes out reading these books and the others set in the same universe, which isn’t something I often do. But however heartbreaking parts of them may be, Sarah Fleming always leaves room for hope for love and a future.

By Sarah Lyons Fleming,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Until the End of the World as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

★Named one of BookBub's 14 Can't-Miss Zombie Series★ ★One of Popsugar’s 68 Books to Read While Social Distancing★

Cities fall. Worlds end. Zombies never die.
Join a group of friends on a journey that takes them to places they never imagined.

Cassie Forrest isn't surprised to learn that the day she’s decided to get her life together is also the day the world ends. After all, she’s been on a self-imposed losing streak since her survivalist parents died: she stopped painting, broke off her engagement to Adrian, and dated a real jerk. Self-improvement can wait, however. First, Cassie and her…


Book cover of Broken Lands

Dave Jeffery Author Of The Devil Device

From my list on YA speculative fiction with strong female protagonists.

Who am I?

I have been publishing speculative fiction for over thirty years and the Beatrice Beecham Young Adult series since 2005. During this time, my appetite for quality fiction has never waned and, as readers will see from the recommended titles here, my reading is broad and spans not only entertaining, escapist fiction, but also that which has a profound message to tell. As a mentor for the Horror Writers Association (HWA) I have used my experience and passion for writing to help other writers develop and hone their craft and was humbled to be a recipient of the ‘HWA Mentor of the Year Award’ in 2023. In short, I know what makes a good story! 

Dave's book list on YA speculative fiction with strong female protagonists

Dave Jeffery Why did Dave love this book?

An extension of Maberry’s Rot And Ruin zombie series for Young Adults, Broken Lands tells the story of the ongoing search for a cure in a world overrun by undead hordes, and very human monsters.

Protagonist Gabriella ‘Gutsy’ Gomez and a wide variety of memorable characters ensure the reader becomes totally immersed in the series from the get-go. Maberry is a master of the action set-piece, making sure that this is a book that will not only have people rooting for the characters, but also leave them breathless from the fast-paced narrative and action sequences.

There are also moments of poignancy that will also have the reader asking philosophical questions as to the fluidity of morality, and what it means to be human in a changed, dysfunctional world. 

By Jonathan Maberry,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Broken Lands 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?

New York Times bestselling author Jonathan Maberry returns to the world of Rot & Ruin with this first novel in a series that's more thrilling and filled with exceptionally terrifying adventures.

Ever since her mother's death, Gabriella "Gutsy" Gomez has spent her days flying under the radar. But when her mother's undead body is returned to her doorstep from the grave and Gutsy witnesses a pack of ravagers digging up Los Muertos-her mother's name for the undead-she realizes that life finds you no matter how hard you try to hide from it.

Meanwhile, Benny Imura and his gang set out…


Book cover of Mountain Man

Devon C Ford Author Of Survival

From my list on current post-apocalyptic series.

Who am I?

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 Nico Bravo and the Hound of Hades

Mike Lawrence Author Of Star Scouts

From my list on to hear your kids laugh out loud.

Who am I?

I’m a stay-at-home working dad, and have handed my boys countless books to keep them entertained so I could get some work done. There’s something magical about giving your kid a book that sparks their love of reading. In my own experience, adventure books that made my boys laugh out loud would captivate my kids for hours…and keep them out of my hair.

Mike's book list on to hear your kids laugh out loud

Mike Lawrence Why did Mike love this book?

Usually I pick out books for my kids, not this one though. My youngest picked this up at the library and loved it so much he told me that I just had to read it, and I’m glad I did! I love mythology and Cavallaro did such a great job taking classic myths and monsters and turning them on their head. Plus, there’s a sword that teleports your enemy’s skeleton into outer space, how great is that?!

By Mike Cavallaro,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Nico Bravo and the Hound of Hades as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

Got a problem? At Vulcan's Celestial Supply Shop, you can find the magical merchandise to set things right. The seasoned staff-a kid named Nico Bravo, a sphynx named Lula, and a unicorn named Buck-pride themselves on providing "legendary service and expertise in all areas of the arcane."

But Nico's world is about to be turned upside down, and it's all thanks his latest customer: Eowulf, the pint-size descendant of the monster slayer Beowulf. Determined to carry on the family business, this would-be warrior plans to slay Cerberus, the terrifying, three-headed hound of Hades.

There's just one problem-Cerberus is the only…


Book cover of Warm Bodies

R.A. Seckler Author Of Containment Zone

From my list on zombies that can think.

Who am I?

I hated reading as a kid. It wasn’t until I was in college I picked up Chuck Pahalniuk’s Survivor and fell in love with books and writing. Since then, I’ve been a non-stop reader and writer. I’d consume on average a book a week (sometime’s more) and write fiction every day. My first novel Containment Zone, combined my love of horror and zombies with themes of coming to terms with the end of one’s life and how we treat the elderly and infirm. For me, writing horror stories is a way of exploring deeper aspects of what it means to be human, all while having some thrills and chills along the way.

R.A.'s book list on zombies that can think

R.A. Seckler Why did R.A. love this book?

Is this book a bit of a Twilight knockoff trying to capitalize on teens by replacing vampires and werewolves with zombies as the love interest? No! Okay, well…sort of. I love this book because of its darkly humorous take on the whole zombie apocalypse deal. Written in the first-person from the zombie’s perspective, Marion was able to give his main character, R, a lot of…wait for it…life. Coupled with his magnificent use of morbid humor and smooth prose, this book definitely has a lot of bite.

By Isaac Marion,

Why should I read it?

6 authors picked Warm Bodies as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'The zombie novel with a heart', Guardian

Now a major motion picture starring Nicholas Hoult, Teresa Palmer and John Malkovich, Warm Bodies is the ultimate zombie read this Halloween.

'R' is a zombie. He has no name, no memories, and no pulse, but he has dreams. He is a little different from his fellow Dead.

Amongst the ruins of an abandoned city, R meets a girl. Her name is Julie and she is the opposite of everything he knows - warm and bright and very much alive, she is a blast of colour in a dreary grey landscape. For reasons…


Book cover of A Gift Upon the Shore

Brittni Brinn Author Of The Patch Project

From my list on life-changing journeys of survival by women.

Who am I?

I’m a science fiction writer living in Nova Scotia, Canada. I’m drawn to character-driven stories that imagine hopeful and inclusive futures, and I absolutely love anything to do with robots. My post-apocalyptic Patch Project series is published with Adventure Worlds Press. After working in the theatre for a few years, I completed my Master’s degree in Creative Writing at the University of Windsor. These days, I write novels featuring ensemble casts, found families, and maybe a con artist or two. These are some of my favourite books of all time, I hope you enjoy them!

Brittni's book list on life-changing journeys of survival by women

Brittni Brinn Why did Brittni love this book?

One of the best post-apocalyptic books I’ve read to date! Mary and Rachel survive a nuclear apocalypse in Rachel’s seaside home. After many long years of surviving and making a new life for themselves, a strange man appears on their shores. Mary decides to make a long journey that changes life for her and Rachel forever. The characters in this book and the writing are so believable, and the centering of books, art, and hope makes this a stand-out from the gray zombie-infested wastelands of recent mainstream post-apocalyptic stories.

By M.K. Wren,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Gift Upon the Shore as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In a post-apocalyptic wasteland, two women seek to preserve the small treasury of books available to them - a gift of knowledge and hope for future generations.

"[A] poignant expression of the durability, grace, and potential of the human spirit." -Jean M. Auel, author of the Earth's Children series

In the 21st Century, civilization is crumbling under the burden of overpopulation, economic chaos, petty wars, a horrific pandemic, and finally, a nuclear war that inevitably results in a deadly nuclear winter.

On the Oregon Coast, two women, writer Mary Hope and painter Rachel Morrow, scratch out a minimal existence as…


Book cover of Divided We Fell

Taylor Ellwood Author Of The Zombie Apocalypse Call Center

From my list on if you want to survive a zombie apocalypse.

Who am I?

I love zombie apocalypse fiction and movies and games. There’s something fascinating about survival and post-apocalyptic fiction, where you see the real character and desire of humanity to survive no matter what. I also like the morbid humor that shows up. I started writing the zombie apocalypse call center series as a way to poke fun at my customer support center experiences and mix it in with my own fascination with zombie apocalypses.

Taylor's book list on if you want to survive a zombie apocalypse

Taylor Ellwood Why did Taylor love this book?

Otto is an average guy going to work in a divided America when the zombie apocalypse occurs.

Suddenly there are zombies everywhere, but if anyone can survive the zombie apocalypse, it’s Otto, who’s got a gun collection and loyal friends and family willing to do whatever it takes to survive the zombies and find out what caused the zombie apocalypse.

I loved the sense of humor and the wacky adventures that balanced the overall horror of the story.

By B. D. Lutz, Monique Happy (editor),

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

America’s political differences have split the country into two vastly different nations. The walls they've built, both physical and ideological, may determine who lives and who dies... twice!

First came the Great Divide … then the dead began to rise and devour the living. The American people voted to split into two countries. But they did not vote to be eaten alive!

An insane world leader, corrupt politicians, and the shambling dead have brought the world to its knees. Now, Otto Hammer–a proud citizen of the new conservative Right America, past his prime and a bit of a jerk–must unite…