Top 10 Greatest Prepper Fiction Books of All Time

survival books

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If you call yourself a prepper, it means you should be a perpetual student. There’s always something more that you can learn or more skills to master…

But, of course, you don’t want your life to be nothing but work and study. It’s okay to have fun and relax, and if you are a reader, hardly anything is better than settling down with a good novel.

And here, we are lucky you can read a cracking good story and still be improving your prepper IQ with the right books.

The following 10 titles all have survival, preparation, or desperately holding out against the odds as central plot points. It might be fiction, and some of them are even fantastical, but you can still learn some very important lessons and have a good time doing so. Let’s get right into it…

A supernatural horror thriller that focuses on the rapidly dwindling population of a small town.

One day, out of nowhere and with no warning, a dome or ring of absolute and impenetrable inky darkness surrounds a town with no signals, and no people are able to get out or in. Those brave or foolish few who chance the darkness meet horrendously terrible ends.

The terror of the situation, along with rapidly dwindling supplies, leads survivors who are stuck within the town’s borders to cooperate at first, but this quickly devolves into tribalism and bloodlust as food, water, alcohol, and cigarettes run out.

It’s a terrifying tale written in a journal style, and a harrowing look at how dire things will get in any kind of survival scenario when the food starts to run out. Get the book here.

A beautifully written tale of survival and persistence, The Dog Stars tells the story of a man, his dog, and his erstwhile friend and fellow survivor living in a fortified airport compound after a global pandemic significantly depletes the population of the United States.

There isn’t as much action as you might think, and much of the story focuses on the protagonist, Hig, just trying to get along and avoid going crazy after so much loss, while still helping those he can using a small Cessna as a conveyance.

Poetic, beautiful, and thought-provoking, this is one of my very favorite post-apocalypse novels and a must-read for any prepper. Get the book here.

New York Times bestselling author Blaine Lee Pardoe brings us a new series that is a thoroughly modern and frightening divergence from our own current trajectory as a country here in the US.

When far-left elements successfully take over the government and conduct an ideological purge, the social issues and mores they harp and crow about suddenly become law, and many become offenses punishable by unpersoning or death.

If you’ve ever had nightmares about a complete and totalitarian leftist takeover of the government, this series will thrill and terrify you in equal measure.

Highly recommended! Get the book here.

A zombie apocalypse thriller written during the heyday of the zombie craze, this book is nonetheless one of the best.

As alluded to by the title, Day by Day Armageddon is a journal, one written by a naval aviator who survives the onset of an ongoing trauma of a plague that turns people into frenzied and feral cannibals.

The author is a Navy veteran and knows what he is talking about when it comes to guns, gear, and tactics, and there are many points of survival and sustainment and also dealing with unknown contacts during a lockdown and shelter-in-place situation.

The problems that come up are invariably solved in a realistic, grounded way, and the story is absolutely riveting if you are into the “apocalyptic log” genre.

Another one I highly recommend! Get the book here.

A classic post-apocalyptic novel, The Postman focuses on civilization, and what it constitutes, in the aftermath of a paradigm-shifting global event.

A massive war saw the use of powerful EMPs along with biological and nuclear weapons that completely devastated the United States and, presumably, much of the globe.

Protagonist Gordon Krantz takes shelter in a wrecked and abandoned post office van and takes the uniform of a postal worker after he is robbed completely blind by brigands.

Visiting various encampments pretending to be a legitimate postal worker from the restored United States, we learn about different survival strategies employed by these new proto-nations and peoples.

A bit of a slow read at times, but highly engrossing and a genuinely moving story that focuses on the humanity, good and bad, of survivors. Get the book here.

In this series, author Grace Hamilton shows us what a truly cataclysmic disaster might look like, one resulting from a massive upheaval and shift of the Earth’s crust. How bad are we talking? Bad enough that the North Pole is now located in the central Atlantic!

The shuttering and groaning of the very planet that we live on has caused a new, global ice age, with humanity as a whole trying desperately and often vainly to resist and live in spite of the cold.

The story focuses on a man, Nathan Trolley, along with his family, a newborn among them, as they do everything they can to find a place that is warm enough to live.

It is a grim book, as there is absolutely no end in sight to the relentless, gnawing cold that has frozen the Earth.

Still, the survival challenges that the Trolley family faces from exposure are fully consistent with both cold weather survival and a total collapse of society and the attendant loss of supply lines. Get the book here.

One of the most talked about books in the survival fiction subgenre, William Forstchen’s darkly prophetic One Second After takes us through a scenario that’s entirely too likely to occur: that of a massive EMP strike on the United States which completely collapses electrical and information infrastructure.

The result is that the vast majority of the population is set back to the industrial or pre-industrial age. Shortages of food, medicine, water, and other supplies take hold almost immediately as people scramble to keep their communities calm, peaceful, and sane.

The story follows Professor John Matherson of Black Mountain, North Carolina, as he tries to keep his family safe but is, increasingly, relied upon by the townspeople as a leader. Get the book here.

In this book, author Pat Frank pulls no punches and shows us exactly what it would look like if a full-scale nuclear war were to occur.

The United States is scoured by nuclear fire, erasing civilization almost entirely as tens of millions die immediately, with millions more dying off in the aftermath.

But, by luck or by virtue of simply being unimportant enough, some towns are spared direct destruction. Such is the fate of the setting of our novel, a tiny town in Florida. Its inhabitants now cling to life and band together to go on living.

This effort is noble but imperfect, and the novel showcases both the best and worst of humanity when pressed into such a desperate situation. Get the book here.

One of the most beloved novels written by world-famous horror author Stephen King, The Stand is a door-stopper of a book but arguably one of the most epic and enthralling tales of post-apocalypse survival ever put to paper.

After a test subject breaks out of a biological testing facility, a weaponized germ scours the globe and kills nearly the entirety of humanity in a matter of days.

Those few survivors that inhabit the unfathomably empty and quiet United States turn to two demagogic leaders: the kindly, peaceful, and wise but ancient Mother Abigail and the charismatic but evil Randall Flagg.

Avid King readers will no doubt recognize the antagonist, and that is a clue to the ultimate underlying plot point of the book.

Much of it is prosaic, and the horrible situations that the characters find themselves in seem to be nothing more than the consequences of governments and the ever-fallible people that populate them screwing up royally.

But as the book drags on and it reaches its climax, more and more supernatural elements start to kick in, in classic King fashion.

It is a lengthy and sometimes difficult read, but phenomenally entertaining and truly thought-provoking for preppers. Get the paperback book here.

One of the greatest novels from one of the most recent and best American masters, The Road tells a very simple but poignant story.

A father, living through the loss of his wife to suicide in the aftermath of some unspecified cataclysm that has wrecked society in the US, is traveling south with his son to reach warmer weather, ahead of the encroaching winter.

With few possessions and surrounded by devastation and death on all sides, they try to hold on to what makes them human and good as the rest of society, seemingly, gives in to desperation and darker impulses.

At turns beautiful and ugly, heartwarming and shockingly violent, The Road is a must-read novel, period, and one of the very, very best pieces of fiction for preppers.

9780307387899Read it, and then really contemplate what you would do if you were placed in the same sorts of situations that the father was. I pray it never happens, but one day soon you might be, and you’ll need to be prepared. You can get the paperback here.

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