Winter’s Here: 20 Popular Survival-Related Novels To Relax With

Welcome to this week’s newsletter, brought to you by…Amazon.com of all things 🙂  They can still deliver stuff by Christmas, so if you haven’t gotten Dry Fire Training Cards, 30-10 Pistol, Concealed Carry Masters Course, Urban Survival Cards, or “Election”–the thriller/novel, head on over to Amazon now and get ’em.

Winter is a great time to catch up on reading, and what better way to do that than with a survival-related novel that both entertains and reminds us of why we’re preppers in the first place. A well-written novel can open the door to situations we may not have thought of, and when an author takes the time to portray realistic solutions, it can educate and inspire.

The top 20 books listed below are not in any particular order. I’ve placed an asterisk next to reader’s recommendations from an earlier September 2014 post, The Farmer’s Almanac Predicts A Brutal Winter: Weather It With These Top 20 Movies. If your favorite book didn’t make it on the list, I’ll be happy to remedy that by including it to the list and will post the results sometime next week.

1. * One Second After, 2009, written by William Forster is one of my personal favorites because it closely portrays what life would be like if the nation was suddenly plunged into grid-down. Forster engages the reader with the plight of the protagonist and his family as he joins community leaders of Black Mountain, North Carolina to control lawlessness, which is sometimes met with deadly force. Medical supplies, water allocation, transportation and sanitation are some of the first causalities of grid-down and it serves as a reminder why survival goes hand in hand with preparedness. .

2. Lucifer’s Hammer, 1977, written by Larry Nivea and Jerry Pourable is based upon the miscalculation and the ensuing cataclysmic events caused by an incoming comet that slams into earth. Those whom survive the devastation of tsunamis, volcanoes, earthquakes, famine and plague must then battle opportunists and cannibals as a new ice age approaches.

3. Alas Babylon, 1959, written by Pat Frank (pen name Harry Hart Frank), continues to make it to the top 20 list of survival-related novels over 60 years after its publication. Nuclear war between the United States and Russia causes communications to fail, banks to close, and convicts now roam the streets. Randy, the protagonist. helps his Florida neighbors organize for safe shelter, food and water and helps his neighborhood defend against looters. A year later, the townspeople are given a choice whether to remain in what is now considered a contaminated area, or to relocate, and the decision isn’t as easy as one would expect.

4. Hatchet, 1987, written by Gary Paulsen, is a riveting story about a 13-year old boys struggling to survive with only a hatchet after the plane transporting him to his father in the oil fields of northern Canada crashes. Alone, Brian learns to build a fire, forage for wild edible food such as berries and fruit, and capture rabbits, birds, turtle eggs, and to fish for survival. But the wilderness of Canada brings danger of bear, moose and wolves and Brian teaches himself how to fashion a bow and arrows with his trusted hatchet as he continues his adventure of lone-wolf survival that often brings bittersweet memories of home.

5. * The Hot Zone, 1994, written by Richard Preston, is an edge-of-your-seat thriller that is not based upon fiction, but the real terror of Ebola and Marburg. This time instead of striking West Africa, the virus is transported from deep in the central African rain forest to the suburbs of Washington D.C. and a secrete military SWAT team and scientists must stop the outbreak, or humanity will suffer the consequences.

6. *The Demon In The Freezer, 2003, written by Richard Preston is a true story that reads like a thriller. By the 1970’s Smallpox was eradicated, except for the frozen samples of death locked away at the Centers For Disease Control in Atlanta and the Maximum Containment Laboratory in Siberia. Some of the Russian stockpile has mysteriously gone missing and Preston raises the possibility that Russia and Iraq are working with the smallpox virus to be used as a biological weapon.

7. *Spillover: Animal Infections and the Next Human Pandemic, 2013, written by David Quammen is a true accounting of the real dangers of animal disease that can infect humans that carries the potential to become pandemics. Quammen artfully mixes science with the retelling of dangerous field adventures that the reader will be compelled by as they are made aware of the lives that hang in the balance between incurable disease, pandemic, and the need for nations to prepare.

8. Blindness, 1999, written by Jose Saramago and Giovanni Pontiero in not for the feint of heart as the reader is plunged into an epidemic of blindness that confines those afflicted and those close to them to a vacant mental hospital A man subsequently afflicted is not blinded, but sees everything through a fog of white as he witnesses inhuman conditions of dwindling food supplies, lack of medical attention and the inability to bury the dead while a criminal element pilfers food and ravages women. The wife of an eye doctor fakes blindness to accompany her husband and does what she can to protect the man and a small band of those who have been blinded. But as the unsanitary surrounds mount with overfilled toilets and decay, she leads the group to the city and the unspeakable hardship that awaits them.

9. World Made By Hand, 2009, written by James Howard Kunstler brings the reader to Union Grove, New York and the devastating effects of extreme oil shortages and climate change. The townspeople must learn to band together to grow their own food, do without antibiotics, and must travel at their peril as transportation screeches to a halt and roadways become deathtraps. Outside communication is nonexistent, leaving survivors to guess at what’s left of the country , but past the abandoned homes and corruption lies a glimmer of hope that once polluted waterways will provide fish and horses will plow the fields , and barter will provide survival on a simpler level without electricity to power refrigerators or power tools or any of the conveniences the world once took for granted.

10. 77 Days In September (The Kyle Tait Series), 2014, written by Ray Gorham portrays, the devastating affects of an EMP attack by terrorists that unplugs the nation from everything they know. Kyle Tait barely escapes with his life when the plane he boards to return to his family in Montana crashes, and he must make the perilous 2,000 mile journey hurt and alone, unsure of the fate of his family. In Montana, Kyle’s family struggles against the violence that threatens the country.

11. 299 Days Series, 2012, written by Glen Tate, is a series of books that chronicles the life of protagonist Grant Matsen, who suddenly wakes up to the fact that society is on the verge of collapse. A lawyer, a husband and father, he decides to start over, only this time with self-sufficiency in mind and begins his journey in the first book of the series struggling between his comfortable world and one that offers assurances that his family will survive. The reader will walk away with a better appreciation of what it takes to survive when things are turned upside down, but there is a cost to the reader involved–similar to the Left Behind series, each of Tate’s paperbacks leaves the reader hanging for the next in his series–a total of 10, each costing around $13.00 per paperback, so don’t get started unless you plan to make an investment! Non-the-less, the series is well-written and keeps the reader engaged throughout each step of Matsen’s journey of survival.

12. The Road, 2007, written by Cormac McCathy is set in a post-apocalyptic nightmare of starvation now that all wildlife has perished and bands of cannibals are on the hunt for their next meal. . . Something has decimated mankind–most likely nuclear war, but that is left to the interpretation of the reader– and a man and his young son travel to the coast for what they hope is a chance for continued survival. They scavenge for food and dodge murderers and the dregs of what’s left of society, but along the way, they are rewarded with small slivers of hope when they find a cache of food, and later meet up with a family who show compassion and kindness.

13, A Canticle for Leibowitz, 2006, written by Walter M. Miller, Jr., brings the reader to a Roman Catholic monastery after nuclear war forces civilization to rebuild. The monks begin to chronicle scientific knowledge that will be withheld until humankind is ready for this lost information; the same technology that lead to nuclear war. Isaac Leibowitz, a Jewish engineer working for the military, leads the effort to safe-keep books before the Simplification severs every-day man from knowledge of communication, science, and technical advances.

14. Earth Abides, 1949, written by George R. Stewart chronicles the life of the protagonist, Isherwood, who during a camping trip is bitten by a rattlesnake, barely survives, and upon returning home to Los Angeles, finds that humanity has been decimated by disease. Isherwood (Ish), strangely immune to the disease, goes in search of survivors, of which there are few. Those who do survive must learn to cope without modern conveniences as Ish tries to make sense of the plague that has decimated the earth. As he ages, Ish ruminates whether intelligence and innovation is more important than the ability to adapt.

15. The Stand, 1990, written by Stephen King. A deadly strain of influenza is unleashed when a man escapes a biological testing facility and the resulting pandemic kills 99.4 percent of humanity within a few short weeks. Violence cannot be stopped with martial law and grief stricken survivors seek help and solace. Two leaders come forward. One is Mother Abagail who invites survivors to build a community in Boulder, Colorado. The other is Randall Flag, someone who relishes in darkness. As the fractions battle one-another, good against evil, a baby is born alive and well, offering the hope of future generations in the aftermath of humanities near extinction.

16. Patriots, 2009, written by Jim Rawles, is reality check for readers who may never have contemplated a full-blown economic collapse, and it stands as a reminder for those who have. A small group of friends must travel to the safety of a North Idaho ranch, but on the way lies the danger of ambush and lawlessness, and the reader soon learns the importance of preparedness, tactical training, and situational awareness. Once the group reaches the ranch, safety is short lived when they are forced to defend their supplies against marauders and roving gangs. In between conflicts, bartering, which now is the only form of commerce, allows people to trade for necessary goods. After an initial period of controlling refugees and protecting people from unspeakable crimes, which takes the lives of several in the group, they join efforts with others to restore Constitutional law.

17. No Blade Of Grass, 1980, written by John Christopher. A mutant virus wipes out the food chain, yet leaves humans and animals alive. A band of survivors must now make their way to safety to a small farm, far away from Britain’s urban centers. What civilization must do for survival becomes a question the reader must ask of themselves. . . what boundaries are acceptable to cross when the world is falling apart, and what aren’t.

18. Lights Out, 2010, written by David Crawford, draws the reader into the lives of ordinary people who must find a way to survive after an EMP topples the country into the dark ages. Crawford’s writing ability makes the reader care what happens to the protagonist Mark Turner (aka Karate Man) and others who have banned together to form a community to survive a world gone mad. The action throughout the book as Mark and his group defend themselves and their neighbors against lawlessness keeps the reader on edge, and the values the groups holds tight to has the reader rooting for their survival every step of the way.

19. The Last Centurion, 2009, written by John Ringo, brings the reader to two back-to-back disasters, a mini ice age and a plague that protagonist and Army officer Bandit Six must fight against if there is any hope of saving his homeland. The book is written as a blog or diary reads and holds to a conservative political mind-set.

20. Deep Winter, 2014, written by Thomas Sherry, Chronicles the survival of one family who survives one disaster after another. Although the situation may not be plausible in the real world, Sherry does a good job of walking/teaching the reader through the fundamentals of how to survive a disaster, which has made Deep Winter popular with anyone interested in survival techniques.

(Ox’s note:  On a somewhat different note, if you’re a Heinlein (Starship Troopers) fan, you should check out Jeff’ Siebrecht’s “Warp Lane” series.  I’m not generally a sci-fi reader, but I’m hooked on this:  Warp Lane)

What are your favorite survival-related novels? Please share with your comments below!

God bless and stay safe,

David Morris and Survival Diva

Comments

  1. Survival Diva says:

    Revised Survival-Related Book List

    The following list is a compilation of 20 recommended books from an earlier December 18, 2014 post, Winter’s Here: 20 Popular Survival-Related Novels To Relax With, plus the additional 19 books that were recommended by readers.

    1. * One Second After, 2009, written by William Forster is one of my personal favorites because it closely portrays what life would be like if the nation was suddenly plunged into grid-down. Forster engages the reader with the plight of the protagonist and his family as he joins community leaders of Black Mountain, North Carolina to control lawlessness, which is sometimes met with deadly force. Medical supplies, water allocation, transportation and sanitation are some of the first causalities of grid-down and it serves as a reminder why survival goes hand in hand with preparedness.

    2. Lucifer’s Hammer, 1977, written by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle is based upon the miscalculation and the ensuing cataclysmic events caused by an incoming comet that slams into earth. Those whom survive the devastation of tsunamis, volcanoes, earthquakes, famine and plague must then battle opportunists and cannibals as a new ice age approaches.

    3. Alas Babylon, 1959, written by Pat Frank (pen name Harry Hart Frank), continues to make it to the top 20 list of survival-related novels over 60 years after its publication. Nuclear war between the United States and Russia causes communications to fail, banks to close, and convicts now roam the streets. Randy, the protagonist. helps his Florida neighbors organize for safe shelter, food and water and helps his neighborhood defend against looters. A year later, the townspeople are given a choice whether to remain in what is now considered a contaminated area, or to relocate, and the decision isn’t as easy as one would expect.

    4. Hatchet, 1987, written by Gary Paulsen, is a riveting story about a 13-year old boys struggling to survive with only a hatchet after the plane transporting him to his father in the oil fields of northern Canada crashes. Alone, Brian learns to build a fire, forage for wild edible food such as berries and fruit, and capture rabbits, birds, turtle eggs, and to fish for survival. But the wilderness of Canada brings danger of bear, moose and wolves and Brian teaches himself how to fashion a bow and arrows with his trusted hatchet as he continues his adventure of lone-wolf survival that often brings bittersweet memories of home.

    5. * The Hot Zone, 1994, written by Richard Preston, is an edge-of-your-seat thriller that is not based upon fiction, but the real terror of Ebola and Marburg. This time instead of striking West Africa, the virus is transported from deep in the central African rain forest to the suburbs of Washington D.C. and a secrete military SWAT team and scientists must stop the outbreak, or humanity will suffer the consequences.

    6. *The Demon In The Freezer, 2003, written by Richard Preston is a true story that reads like a thriller. By the 1970’s Smallpox was eradicated, except for the frozen samples of death locked away at the Centers For Disease Control in Atlanta and the Maximum Containment Laboratory in Siberia. Some of the Russian stockpile has mysteriously gone missing and Preston raises the possibility that Russia and Iraq are working with the smallpox virus to be used as a biological weapon.

    7. *Spillover: Animal Infections and the Next Human Pandemic, 2013, written by David Quammen is a true accounting of the real dangers of animal disease that can infect humans that carries the potential to become pandemics. Quammen artfully mixes science with the retelling of dangerous field adventures that the reader will be compelled by as they are made aware of the lives that hang in the balance between incurable disease, pandemic, and the need for nations to prepare.

    8. Blindness, 1999, written by Jose Saramago and Giovanni Pontiero in not for the feint of heart as the reader is plunged into an epidemic of blindness that confines those afflicted and those close to them to a vacant mental hospital A man subsequently afflicted is not blinded, but sees everything through a fog of white as he witnesses inhuman conditions of dwindling food supplies, lack of medical attention and the inability to bury the dead while a criminal element pilfers food and ravages women. The wife of an eye doctor fakes blindness to accompany her husband and does what she can to protect the man and a small band of those who have been blinded. But as the unsanitary surrounds mount with overfilled toilets and decay, she leads the group to the city and the unspeakable hardship that awaits them.

    9. World Made By Hand, 2009, written by James Howard Kunstler brings the reader to Union Grove, New York and the devastating effects of extreme oil shortages and climate change. The townspeople must learn to band together to grow their own food, do without antibiotics, and must travel at their peril as transportation screeches to a halt and roadways become deathtraps. Outside communication is nonexistent, leaving survivors to guess at what’s left of the country , but past the abandoned homes and corruption lies a glimmer of hope that once polluted waterways will provide fish and horses will plow the fields , and barter will provide survival on a simpler level without electricity to power refrigerators or power tools or any of the conveniences the world once took for granted.

    10. 77 Days In September (The Kyle Tait Series), 2014, written by Ray Gorham portrays, the devastating affects of an EMP attack by terrorists that unplugs the nation from everything they know. Kyle Tait barely escapes with his life when the plane he boards to return to his family in Montana crashes, and he must make the perilous 2,000 mile journey hurt and alone, unsure of the fate of his family. In Montana, Kyle’s family struggles against the violence that threatens the country.

    11. 299 Days Series, 2012, written by Glen Tate, is a series of books that chronicles the life of protagonist Grant Matsen, who suddenly wakes up to the fact that society is on the verge of collapse. A lawyer, a husband and father, he decides to start over, only this time with self-sufficiency in mind and begins his journey in the first book of the series struggling between his comfortable world and one that offers assurances that his family will survive. The reader will walk away with a better appreciation of what it takes to survive when things are turned upside down, but there is a cost to the reader involved–similar to the Left Behind series, each of Tate’s paperbacks leaves the reader hanging for the next in his series–a total of 10, each costing around $13.00 per paperback, so don’t get started unless you plan to make an investment! Non-the-less, the series is well-written and keeps the reader engaged throughout each step of Matsen’s journey of survival.

    12. The Road, 2007, written by Cormac McCathy is set in a post-apocalyptic nightmare of starvation now that all wildlife has perished and bands of cannibals are on the hunt for their next meal. . . Something has decimated mankind–most likely nuclear war, but that is left to the interpretation of the reader– and a man and his young son travel to the coast for what they hope is a chance for continued survival. They scavenge for food and dodge murderers and the dregs of what’s left of society, but along the way, they are rewarded with small slivers of hope when they find a cache of food, and later meet up with a family who show compassion and kindness.

    13. A Canticle for Leibowitz, 1960, written by Walter M. Miller.Winner of the 1961 Hugo Award for Best Novel and widely considered one of the most accomplished, powerful, and enduring classics of modern speculative fiction, Walter M. Miller, Jr.’s A Canticle for Leibowitz is a true landmark of twentieth-century literature — a chilling and still-provocative look at a post-apocalyptic future. In a nightmarish ruined world slowly awakening to the light after sleeping in darkness, the infant rediscoveries of science are secretly nourished by cloistered monks dedicated to the study and preservation of the relics and writings of the blessed Saint Isaac Leibowitz. From here the story spans centuries of ignorance, violence, and barbarism, viewing through a sharp, satirical eye the relentless progression of a human race damned by its inherent humanness to recelebrate its grand foibles and repeat its grievous mistakes. Seriously funny, stunning, and tragic, eternally fresh, imaginative, and altogether remarkable, A Canticle for Leibowitz retains its ability to enthrall and amaze. It is now, as it always has been, a masterpiece.

    14. Earth Abides, 1949, written by George R. Stewart chronicles the life of the protagonist, Isherwood, who during a camping trip is bitten by a rattlesnake, barely survives, and upon returning home to Los Angeles, finds that humanity has been decimated by disease. Isherwood (Ish), strangely immune to the disease, goes in search of survivors, of which there are few. Those who do survive must learn to cope without modern conveniences as Ish tries to make sense of the plague that has decimated the earth. As he ages, Ish ruminates whether intelligence and innovation is more important than the ability to adapt.

    15. The Stand, 1990, written by Stephen King. A deadly strain of influenza is unleashed when a man escapes a biological testing facility and the resulting pandemic kills 99.4 percent of humanity within a few short weeks. Violence cannot be stopped with martial law and grief stricken survivors seek help and solace. Two leaders come forward. One is Mother Abagail who invites survivors to build a community in Boulder, Colorado. The other is Randall Flag, someone who relishes in darkness. As the fractions battle one-another, good against evil, a baby is born alive and well, offering the hope of future generations in the aftermath of humanities near extinction.

    16. Patriots, 2009, written by Jim Rawles, is reality check for readers who may never have contemplated a full-blown economic collapse, and it stands as a reminder for those who have. A small group of friends must travel to the safety of a North Idaho ranch, but on the way lies the danger of ambush and lawlessness, and the reader soon learns the importance of preparedness, tactical training, and situational awareness. Once the group reaches the ranch, safety is short lived when they are forced to defend their supplies against marauders and roving gangs. In between conflicts, bartering, which now is the only form of commerce, allows people to trade for necessary goods. After an initial period of controlling refugees and protecting people from unspeakable crimes, which takes the lives of several in the group, they join efforts with others to restore Constitutional law.

    17. No Blade Of Grass, 1980, written by John Christopher. A mutant virus wipes out the food chain, yet leaves humans and animals alive. A band of survivors must now make their way to safety to a small farm, far away from Britain’s urban centers. What civilization must do for survival becomes a question the reader must ask of themselves. . . what boundaries are acceptable to cross when the world is falling apart, and what aren’t.

    18. Lights Out, 2010, written by David Crawford, draws the reader into the lives of ordinary people who must find a way to survive after an EMP topples the country into the dark ages. Crawford’s writing ability makes the reader care what happens to the protagonist Mark Turner (aka Karate Man) and others who have banded together to form a community to survive a world gone mad. The action throughout the book as Mark and his group defend themselves and their neighbors against lawlessness keeps the reader on edge, and the values the groups holds tight to has the reader rooting for their survival every step of the way.

    19. The Last Centurion, 2009, written by John Ringo, brings the reader to two back-to-back disasters, a mini ice age and a plague that protagonist and Army officer Bandit Six must fight against if there is any hope of saving his homeland. The book is written as a blog or diary reads and holds to a conservative political mind-set.

    20. Deep Winter, 2014, written by Thomas Sherry, Chronicles the survival of one family who survives one disaster after another. Although the situation may not be plausible in the real world, Sherry does a good job of walking/teaching the reader through the fundamentals of how to survive a disaster, which has made Deep Winter popular with anyone interested in survival techniques.

    21. * How To Survive The End Of The World As We Know It, 2009, written by James Wesley Rawles clearly explains everything you need to know to protect yourself and your family in the event of a disaster-from radical currency devaluation to a nuclear threat to a hurricane. Rawles shares essential tactics and techniques for surviving completely on your own, including how much food is enough, how to filter rainwater, how to protect your money, which seeds to buy for your garden, why goats are a smart choice for livestock, and how to secure your home. It’s the ultimate guide to total preparedness and self-reliance in a time of need.

    22. *Survivors, 2012, written by James Wesley Rawles. The America we are accustomed to is no more. Practically overnight the stock market has plum-meted, hyperinflation has crippled commerce, and the fragile chains of supply and high-technology infrastructure have fallen. The power grids are down. Brutal rioting and looting grip every major city. The volatile era known as “the Crunch” has begun, and this new period in our history will leave no one untouched. In this unfamiliar environment, only a handful of individuals are equipped to survive.

    23. *The Survivalist Series, Books 1 to 5, 2013 to present, written by A. American. Amazon description of Book 1: When Morgan Carter’s car breaks down 250 miles from his home, he figures his weekend plans are ruined. But things are about to get much, much worse: the country’s power grid has collapsed. There is no electricity, no running water, no Internet, and no way to know when normalcy will be restored—if it ever will be. An avid survivalist, Morgan takes to the road with his prepper pack on his back. During the grueling trek from Tallahassee to his home in Lake County, chaos threatens his every step but Morgan is hell-bent on getting home to his wife and daughters—and he’ll do whatever it takes to make that happen.

    24. *Day of Wrath, 2014, written by William Forstchen. Bob Petersen arrives with his daughter at the Middle Grade school in Maine where he teaches, expecting another regular day but worried about what recent ominous news reports might portend. Suddenly his school — along with many others across the United States — is under attack. Gunmen burst in, slaughtering children and adults alike. This novella by New York Times bestselling author William R. Forstchen imagines a horrifying scenario where, in the course of one day, the terrorist group ISIS carries out massacres in schools and on highways across the United States. With a surprisingly small but well-organized and ruthless force, the nightmarish devastation brings America to a state of near-paralysis.

    25. *The Survival Medicine Handbook: A Guide for When Help is Not on the Way, 2013, written by Dr. Joseph Alton and Amy Altin is geared to enable the non-medical professional to deal with all the likely issues they will encounter in catastrophic scenarios. The Survival Medicine Handbook ™ is not your standard first aid book. It assumes that no hospital or doctor is available in the aftermath of a catastrophic event. This book will give you the tools to handle injuries and illness for when YOU might be the end of the line with regards to your family’s medical well-being. In circumstances where medical personnel are overwhelmed and access to modern technology is limited or non-existent, The Survival Medicine Handbook(tm) is the essential reference book for every library. Written in plain English, you’ll find step-by-step instructions on how to identify and treat over 100 different medical issues. The second edition also covers alternative remedies for almost every possible medical condition in situations where modern healthcare is inaccessible

    26. *Living Ready Pocket Manual – First Aid: Fundamentals for Survival, 2013, written by James Hubbard. Whether you are miles from help or immersed in an urban disaster situation, every second counts during a medical emergency. This book will help you take quick, effective action to stabilize the situation. The easy-to-follow, step-by-step instruction in this book will help you prevent or respond to: Dehydration, Hypothermia, frostbite and heatstroke, Skin wounds including burns, cuts, bites and gunshots, Anaphylaxis, allergic reactions and rashes, Broken bones and injured joints. Plus you’ll find detailed packing lists for survival first aid kits of all sizes. This pocket-sized manual is perfect for packing in first aid kits, bug out bags, day-hiking packs and vehicle kits. Medical emergencies are unplanned and unpredictable, but you can be prepared. Arm yourself with knowledge that can save a life.

    27. *Where There Is No Doctor: A Village Health Care Handbook, 1992, written by David Werner, Carol Thurman and Jane Maxwell. Useful for health workers, clinicians, and others involved in primary health care delivery and health promotion programs, with millions of copies in print in more than 75 languages, the manual provides practical, easily understood information on how to diagnose, treat, and prevent common diseases. Special attention is focused on nutrition, infection and disease prevention, and diagnostic techniques as primary ways to prevent and treat health problems.

    28. *Where There Is No Dentist, 2012, written by Murry Dickson. Community health workers, educators and individuals from around the world use Where There Is No Dentist to help people care for their teeth and gums. This book’s broad focus makes it an invaluable resource. The author uses straightforward language and careful instructions to explain how to: examine patients; diagnose common dental problems; make and use dental equipment; use local anesthetics; place fillings; and remove teeth. There is also a special chapter on oral health and HIV/AIDS, which provides the dental worker with a detailed, well-illustrated discussion of the special problems faced by people living with HIV/AIDS, and appropriate treatment.

    29. *Dies the Fire, 2005, written by S.M. Sterling. The Change occurred when an electrical storm centered over the island of Nantucket produced a blinding white flash that rendered all electronic devices and fuels inoperable. What follows is the most terrible global catastrophe in the history of the human race-and a Dark Age more universal and complete than could possibly be imagined.

    30. *Tomorrow, When the War Began, 2006, written by John Marsden. When Ellie and her friends go camping, they have no idea they’re leaving their old lives behind forever. Despite a less-than-tragic food shortage and a secret crush or two, everything goes as planned. But a week later, they return home to find their houses empty and their pets starving. Something has gone wrong–horribly wrong. Before long, they realize the country has been invaded, and the entire town has been captured–including their families and all their friends. Ellie and the other survivors face an impossible decision: They can flee for the mountains or surrender. Or they can fight.

    31. *Disappearance, 2013, written by Ryan Wiley. Andrew wakes up, only to discover his wife isn’t home and the power is out. There are no cars on the road either. Soon, he realizes the entire town has been deserted overnight and he’s the only person left for miles. While he has enough food and resources to survive for months if not years at home, his yearning to find his wife, Abby, compels him to search for her. The more he looks, though, the more he discovers things aren’t as they should be.

    32. *Emergency, 2009, written by Neil Strauss. Neil Strauss takes us on a white-knuckle journey through America’s heart of darkness as he scrambles to escape the system. As the economic downturn, continuing climate change and the prevailing terrorist threat prove that the dangers facing our world loom larger than ever, Strauss decides he’s had enough. Soon he is investigating ways of getting second citizenship on the island of St. Kitts, protecting his assets offshore, and making friends with an elite group of billionaires who are thinking exactly the same thing. Strauss’ thirst for survival becomes more extreme as he prepares for The End Of The World As We Know It. He trains with guns, learns American Indian tracking skills, hides caches of supplies and acquires a special forces motorcycle to help him ‘bug out’. When The Shit Hits The Fan, this book might just save your life.

    33. *Neighbors, 2013, written by William Cory. When dreaded earthquakes and rare late-season storms attack both coasts of North America, lives everywhere are in jeopardy. In the heart of the country, in a quiet neighborhood in Colorado, people would die but for the efforts of one man. And through it all, though their lives are in danger, the neighbors work together, trying to salvage what they can from the results of the storms, the evils of criminal attacks, and a justice system that might destroy a war hero’s family.

    34. *Enemies Foreign and Domestic, 2003, written by Matthew Bracken. Enemies Foreign And Domestic is a domestic terrorism thriller set in the near future. The novel begins on opening day of the NFL season, when bullets begin to rain down upon the upper deck of a packed football stadium. A panic stampede ensues, leading to mass casualties. The alleged sniper is found holding a smoking assault rifle, and is killed by a police marksman. One week later, congress bans the private possession of all semi-automatic assault rifles. Gun owners are given one week to turn in their semi-automatic rifles, or face a five year mandatory sentence. The plot revolves around the true identity of the actual sniper. The alleged sniper killed at the scene may be a patsy, and many Americans refuse to turn in their banned weapons, leading to a civil crisis in the nation.

    35. *Domestic Enemies: The Reconquista, 2006, by Matthew Bracken is a novel set in the not-too-distant future in the American Southwest, during a period of low-intensity civil war. The action takes place between Texas and California, but the story is mainly centered around New Mexico. Domestic Enemies: The Reconquista is a sequel to Enemies Foreign And Domestic, but it may be enjoyed on its own.

    36. *Ground Zero: A Zombie Apocalypse, 2013, written by Nicholas Ryan. Aboard a freighter bound for Baltimore harbor, an Iranian terrorist prepares to unleash an unimaginable horror upon the United States. The ‘Wrath’ is an undead plague – an infection that consumes its victims with a maddening rage and turns them into mindless blood-thirsty killers. Jack Cutter is just an ordinary guy dealing with a dreadful guilt when the virus tears through his home town. Before it’s too late, Cutter will have to find a way to survive, and find a reason fight: his redemption.

    37. *The Martian, 2014, written by Andy Weir. The following is a reader’s description: This is an absolutely gripping story of survival against all the odds, and I strongly recommend it. The surface conditions on Mars are realistic and the science is real. Astronaut Mark Watney has a great sense of humor, providing comic relief. Murphy’s Law is alive & well on Mars. Astronaut Mark Watney & his crew are on a mission on Mars which is aborted just 6 days into the scheduled two months. After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive—and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive. But Mark isn’t ready to give up yet. Drawing on his ingenuity, his engineering skills—and a relentless, dogged refusal to quit—he steadfastly confronts one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next. Will his resourcefulness be enough to overcome the impossible odds.

    38. *The Survivalist: Total War, Book 1 in a series, 2011, written by Jerry Ahern. This is number one in the Survivalist series featuring the hero, John Thomas Rourke: The story of the ultimate war, the final nuclear holocaust and the unrelenting quest of John Thomas Rourke as he begins his search across war-ravaged America, following every haunting clue, however fragmentary, to locate his missing family.

    39. *The Day of the Triffids, first published in 1951, written by John Wyndham. In 1951 John Wyndham published his novel The Day of the Triffids to moderate acclaim. Fifty-two years later, this horrifying story is a science fiction classic, touted by The Times (London) as having “all the reality of a vividly realized nightmare.” Bill Masen, bandages over his wounded eyes, misses the most spectacular meteorite shower England has ever seen. Removing his bandages the next morning, he finds masses of sightless people wandering the city. He soon meets Josella, another lucky person who has retained her sight, and together they leave the city, aware that the safe, familiar world they knew a mere twenty-four hours before is gone forever. But to survive in this post-apocalyptic world, one must survive the Triffids, strange plants that years before began appearing all over the world. The Triffids can grow to over seven feet tall, pull their roots from the ground to walk, and kill a man with one quick lash of their poisonous stingers. With society in shambles, they are now poised to prey on humankind. Wyndham chillingly anticipates bio-warfare and mass destruction, fifty years before their realization, in this prescient account of Cold War paranoia.

  2. Anomalocaris says:

    There’s a Kindle series that starts with Ground Zero. Zombies, but a lot of basic survival stuff as well. Literacy seems to be a casualty of the internet age these days and people who can’t spell basic words are calling themselves professional writers, but this one is at least mostly literate.

  3. Series of about 12 paperbacks now out of print so look for used copies:
    “Survivalist” by Jerry Ahern

    Also “Day of the Triffids” (I don’t remember the author). Another “oldie”.I

    Agree with the suggestion for “Tomorrow”.

    Of those on the list I have and like: One Second After, Lucifer’s Hammer, Alas Babylon.

    • Survival Diva says:

      Liz,

      Thank You for the recommendations. They’ll be added to the list that should be available by tomorrow night.

  4. Recommend “The Martian” by Andy Weir
    This is an absolutely gripping story of survival against all the odds, and I strongly recommend it.
    The surface conditions on Mars are realistic and the science is real. Astronaut Mark Watney has a great sense of humor, providing comic relief. Murphy’s Law is alive & well on Mars.
    Astronaut Mark Watney & his crew are on a mission on Mars which is aborted just 6 days into the scheduled two months.
    “After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive—and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive.
    But Mark isn’t ready to give up yet. Drawing on his ingenuity, his engineering skills—and a relentless, dogged refusal to quit—he steadfastly confronts one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next. Will his resourcefulness be enough to overcome the impossible odds against him?”
    Check it out at the Amazon Link below:
    www.amazon.com/Martian-Andy-Weir/dp/0553418025/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1419724518&sr=1-1&keywords=The+Martian

    • Survival Diva says:

      JCM,

      The Martian will be added to the final list, which I hope to post by late tomorrow. I’m using your description because it’s excellent and makes me want to read it : )

  5. I’ve read eleven of your listed books! My latest favorite is: Enemies Foreign and Domestic, , by Matthew Bracken. The first book centers on gun control. Domestic Enemies: The Reconquista, the second book, focuses on our southern border. Actually, I’ve enjoyed every thing he’s writen so far!

  6. I have always liked the “Alas Babylon” book which usually reminds me that I need to, at least, review my supplies and preparedness regularly. I read the “One Second After” and have not really liked it much, although you can take a few things from it. It’s too top-ruled and not inspiring, and I am!… a realistic and practical person.

    I’m reading “the Patriots” and so far, you need to have lots of money to be prepared as the group in the book, which kinda left me out…however, the review you gave of it gives me hope there is more to it than what I’ve read so far. Thanks.

  7. Ouch! I’m hurt and disappointed. Hasn’t anyone on this site read my novel, “The Road to Summertown—Stories from Tomorrow’s Newspaper”? Of the twenty listed above, this is possibly more readable, more enjoyable (in spite of some violence), and more optimistic than the lot. Go to and order it with free Priority (two-day) Delivery, and a no hassle 30-day guarantee if you don’t really like it. You can even read the first three chapters before ordering if you like.

  8. Frank Johnson says:

    A little book that got not much attention, titled “Neighbors,” on Amazon, is an inexpensive ebook about a cul de sac in Colorado, where a disaster affects the people. it’s mroe like we can really expect and I learned a lot from it. Neighbors by William Cory.

  9. I would add the book:
    EMERGENCY: This Book Will Save Your Life by Neil Strauss. Its actually a true story about one mans search for answers to security in our world today. His research is EXCELLENT!
    It’d be a funny read if it wasn’t about such a serious topic, like STAYING ALIVE!

  10. Robert Seemuth says:

    Thank you for the good list. If you have read Lloyd Tackitt’s book/series starting with “A Distant Eden”, where does it fall in your list of readable/useful books?
    Curious,
    Bob

    • Survival Diva says:

      Robert,
      I haven’t read “A Distant Eden”. Would you recommend it? If so, I’ll add it to the list.

      • Judy Panza says:

        I read “A Distant Eden” a couple months ago, and, like one of the books mentioned above, it is probably not an entirely plausible scenario, but it’s pretty readable and is informative about the hazards and hurdles people might face in a grid-down world. The chapters alternate between several members of a family trying to meet at a family bug-out location, and relates how they live in place for a time, communicate, travel, avoid or meet dangerous situations, etc.

      • I tried to read a Distant Eden but it was terrible in my view and returned it to Audible they refunded the credits.

  11. MUST watch the short-lived tv series “Jerrico” for realistic view of problems faced during collapse of society. Believe its available on Netflix. Premice is small town in midwest sees mushroom clouds on the distant horizon, but they are not hit. What to do now, who’s still alive, who to trust?

  12. There are a couple of errors in your synopsis of A Canticle for Leibowitz. First, the novel was originally published in 1960, not 2006. This is important because it was towards the end of the 1950s concern over atomic war. Second, the story begins 600 years after Leibowitz’s death so he really has no part in the telling of the story. It ends over a thousand years later. It is based on three short novellas that appeared in The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction starting ij 1955. There is a fairly lucid analysis of the novel in Wikipedia.

    You might consider Philip Wylie’s Tomorrow as well as Disappearance. The first tells the story of sister cities in the Midwest, one well prepared for disasters and the other city completely unprepared and their reaction to a nuclear holocaust. The second describes a world where suddenly all the women disappear. At the same time, in an alternate dimension or world, all the men disappear.

    • Survival Diva says:

      Charles,
      I haven’t read A Canticle for Leibowitz yet, but have requested it from the nearby Library. The description was taken from a review from a site that either I misinterpreted or was not accurate. I will make corrections for next week’s updated list. Publishing dates were interesting to figure when based on Amazon. I double-checked against Wiki, but missed this correction. Just went to Wiki, which states the books publish date is 1960. Thank You for the heads up!

      Tomorrow and Disappearance will be added to the list : )

  13. Dies the Fire is a great book. Probably the book that Revolution the TV show was based on, but much better as a book.

    • Survival Diva says:

      Jeff,
      Dies the Fire will be added to the list, and thank you for the recommendation.

    • Dies the fire is the first book of what was known as “The Change Series”, I’m probably on the second from the last book, it is sort of like how Revolution is portrayed but the causes and effects are far different. Not trying to spoil anything but unlike Revolution, in Dies The Fire, something causes all tech to go out, but also changes the laws of physics where even things like guns and explosives fail to function like normal, high compression technology fails to work (no steam engines, compressed air tech, etc) so people have to revert back to the pre-gunpowder age as they create new alliances and fight against evil forces, it is a good read though that will keep you captivated.

  14. Regarding The Road….the more likely scenario is an asteroid or similar impact. No mention of radiation is made in the book, and though much of the landscape is scorched, that is consistent with the impact models. The author deliberately leaves the actual cause vague.

    • Survival Diva says:

      Patrick,

      I watched the movie, but didn’t read the book because the movie was enough. . . I prefer movies or books that offer hope in even the worst of circumstances, but that’s just me. I did get the impression of the disaster being either nuclear or an asteroid impact, but upon researching reviews, most guessed at nuclear. Now that you mention it, there was no mention of radiation which would make impact more realistic.

  15. So many more to add to my long list of “must read” texts. Re: #18 Lights Out: I believe the word is “banded” not “banned”

    • Survival Diva says:

      Rich,

      Lesson learned. . . when running spell check I usually keep a watchful eye for its “corrections” which can sometimes be wildly inaccurate. Missed this one!

  16. I’d already read Ringo’s Last Centurion, The Hatchet, Lucifer’s Hammer, One Second After, and Patriots, and they were all good. I saw the movie “The Road” and was left feeling just like I had after watching “2001: A Space Odyssey”, bewildered as to what the movie was about. It would have been nice if even one of the titles you listed had been on the Kindle Unlimited list, but, alas, not even _1_ was! I’m surprised to find none of the After-the-Fall medical books listed. Doc Alton’s “The Survival Medicine Handbook: How to survive when help isn’t coming.” is great and should be on everyone’s shelf. I sampled “Living Ready Pocket Manual – First Aid: Fundamentals for Survival” and then bought it for my BOB. “Where There Is No Doctor” and “When There Is No Dentist” are good Must-Haves, too. Every book has a different focus, and I haven’t yet found a book which includes everything, so multiples are a must. BTW, thanks again for the blog, David & Diva.

    • Survival Diva says:

      LBJ

      I only listed novels for holiday reading. Where There Is No Doctor and Where There Is No Dentist are on my crowded bookshelf. I’ve loaned them out to trusted neighbors (books and tools, I’ve learned, have a habit of “disappearing” so I don’t loan them to just anybody) who then bought their own–great medical reference books! With your recommendation, I’m adding Doc Alton’s medical book to the bookshelf. I’ve been tempted to buy it and now it’s a for sure.

  17. Survival Diva says:

    Old Mother Hubbard asked for me to add the following book recommendation:

    Day of Wrath by William Forstchen (author of the first book you recommended). Riveting wake up call (new novella) showing our fragile defenses against Isis terrorists attacking our schools and freeways.

  18. It’s “Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle” (correct spellings) that wrote Lucifer’s Hammer.

    • Survival Diva says:

      Ben,

      Thank you for the correction. It will be reflected in the updated list that will be posted later next week.

  19. My favorites on the list:
    1) Patriots, by James Wesley, Rawles (JWR)
    2) 299 Days series, by Glenn Tate (The Audible Audio audio books are very well narrated!)
    3) One Second After, by William R. Forstchen

    Also VERY valuable:
    1) How To Survive The End Of The World As We Know It (TEOTWAWKI) by JWR
    2) Suirvivors (Book #2 of the “Patriots” series), by JWR
    3) and of course, the Home series by A. American. There are currently 4 books out with the 5th “Resurrecting Home,” due for release at the end of this month.

    All of these books provide direct or indirect information pertaining to survival along a story line (sans How To Survive TEOTWAWKI which BTW, is an excellent source of information which should not be passed up by any prepper!

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