#blogjune 13 makeup post: Dystopian literature meme

Here we go. This one’s in chronological order.


A Sojourn in the City of Amalgamation, in the Year of Our Lord, 19– (1835) by Oliver Bolokitten
The Republic of the Future (1887) by Anna Bowman Dodd
Caesar’s Column (1890) by Ignatius L. Donnelly
Pictures of the Socialistic Future (1890) by Eugen Richte
The Time Machine (1895) by H. G. Wells
When The Sleeper Wakes (1899) by H. G. Wells


The First Men in the Moon (1901) by H. G. Wells
The Iron Heel (1908) by Jack London
The Machine Stops (1909) by E. M. Forster


We (1921) by Yevgeny Zamyatin


Brave New World (1932) by Aldous Huxley Finally!
It Can’t Happen Here (1935) by Sinclair Lewis
War with the Newts (1936) by Karel Čapek
Anthem (1938) by Ayn Rand


Darkness at Noon (1940) by Arthur Koestler
“If This Goes On—” (1940) by Robert A. Heinlein
Kallocain (1940) by Karin Boye
Bend Sinister (1947) by Vladimir Nabokov
Ape and Essence (1948) by Aldous Huxley
Nineteen Eighty-Four (1949) by George Orwell Sheesh.


Limbo, (vt. Limbo 90) (1952) by Bernard Wolfe
Player Piano (also known as Utopia 14) (1952) by Kurt Vonnegut Here’s hoping KV will catch me up…
Fahrenheit 451 (1953) by Ray Bradbury All of a sudden it’s the 50s and I’m all over the show!
One (also published as Escape to Nowhere) (1953) by David Karp
Bring the Jubilee (1953) by Ward Moore
Lord of the Flies (1954) by William Golding Ish… I started it. :/
The Chrysalids (1955) by John Wyndham Yes, and I think Wyndham is vastly underrated.
Atlas Shrugged (1957) by Ayn Rand


Facial Justice (1960) by L. P. Hartley
Harrison Bergeron (1961) by Kurt Vonnegut  It’s a short story rather than a novel, but it’s one that stuck with me. It’s about a future where people with special abilities are deliberately handicapped to fulfill “All Men Are Created Equal.”
A Clockwork Orange (1962) by Anthony Burgess I tried watching the movie too, but I just don’t get the art in sexual attacks.
Cloud On Silver (US title Sweeney’s Island) (1964) by John Christopher
Nova Express (1964) by William S. Burroughs It’s no more dystopian than anything else from Mr. B.
The Penultimate Truth (1964) by Philip K. Dick
Make Room! Make Room! (1966) by Harry Harrison
Stand on Zanzibar (1968) by John Brunner Great book. If you want to see what Frank Miller’s trying to with his storytelling in the Dark Knight, it’s here in print form.
The Jagged Orbit (1969) by John Brunner It’s great! Door to door guns salespeople! Home invasion a daily norm, hence the former!


This Perfect Day (1970) by Ira Levin
The Lathe of Heaven (1971) by Ursula K. Le Guin
The Sheep Look Up (1972) by John Brunner Ends with a self-destructing US being described as a solution to overpopulation.
Flow My Tears, the Policeman Said (1974) by Philip K. Dick
The Shockwave Rider (1975) by John Brunner
Alongside Night (1979) by J. Neil Schulman


The Running Man (1982) by Stephen King under the pseudonym Richard Bachman Which I read during that King phase.
Sprawl trilogy: Neuromancer (1984),[5] Count Zero (1986) and Mona Lisa Overdrive (1988) by William Gibson
The Handmaid’s Tale (1985) by Margaret Atwood
Obernewtyn Chronicles (1987–2008) by Isobelle Carmody
The Domination (1988) by S. M. Stirling
V for Vendetta(1988-1989) by Alan Moore(writer), and David Lloyd(illustrator). Not replicable in the movie, because it’s based on a very British sensibility.


Fatherland (1992) by Robert Harris
The Children of Men (1992) by P.D. James
The Giver (1993) by Lois Lowry
Gun, with Occasional Music (1994) by Jonathan Lethem
The Diamond Age, or A Young Lady’s Illustrated Primer (1995) by Neal Stephenson And for that I love him.
Battle Royale (1999) by Koushun Takami


Noughts and Crosses (2001) by Malorie Blackman Teen book I most enjoyed.
Feed (2002) by M. T. Anderson
Oryx and Crake (2003) by Margaret Atwood
Manna (2003) by Marshall Brain
Knife edge (2004) by Malorie Blackman
The Bar Code Tattoo (2004) by Suzanne Weyn
Cloud Atlas (2004) by David Mitchell
Checkmate (2005) by Malorie Blackman
Divided Kingdom (2005) by Rupert Thomson
Never Let Me Go (2005) by Kazuo Ishiguro
Uglies (2005) by Scott Westerfeld
Armageddon’s Children (2006) by Terry Brooks
Bar Code Rebellion (2006) by Suzanne Weyn
The Book of Dave (2006) by Will Self
Oprichnik’s Day (2006) by Vladimir Sorokin
Genesis (2006) by Bernard Beckett
Sunshine Assassins (2006) by John F. Miglio
The Pesthouse (2007) by Jim Crace
“The Gone Series” (2008) by Michael Grant
The Host (2008) by Stephenie Meyer
Double Cross (2008) by Malorie Blackman
The Hunger Games (2008) by Suzanne Collins
The Forest of Hands and Teeth (2009) by Carrie Ryan
Fahrenheit 56K (2009) by Fernando de Querol Alcaraz
The Maze Runner (2009) by James Dashner
The Year of the Flood (2009) by Margaret Atwood
Shades of Grey (2009) by Jasper Fforde
Mister (2009) by Alex Kurtagić
Catching Fire (2009) by Suzanne Collins
The Envy Chronicles (2010) by Joss Ware
Matched (2010) by Ally Condie
Monsters of Men (2010) by Patrick Ness
Mockingjay (2010) by Suzanne Collins
Rondo (2010) by John Maher
Wired (2010) by Robin Wasserman
“Delirium” (2010) by Lauren Oliver
The Butterfly and the Flame (2011) by Dana De Young
Tobacco-Stained Mountain Goat (2011) by Andrez Bergen
Wither (2011) by Lauren DeStefano
“Divergent” (2011) by Veronica Roth

See? Now I get to suck at something customised for my personal tastes. I put a few holds on the catalogue after this exercise though.


About seanmurgatroyd
Library (Shared blog): http://diligentroom.wordpress.com/ Personal including infoculture, book reviews: http://diligentroom.wordpress.com/ Music: http://seanfishmusic.wordpress.com/ Last.fm band page: http://www.last.fm/music/Seanfish @seanfish

9 Responses to #blogjune 13 makeup post: Dystopian literature meme

  1. Sally says:

    I’m also a big fan of dystopian fiction, and have probably read about the same number on this list as you – although quite a few of my reads are different to yours. I haven’t read anything from the 2000s, I tend to read fairly heavily from the 1950s-70s when it comes to sci fi / alternate history / etc. And I think I’ll also put a few holds on at my local library after reading this list – thanks! 🙂

    • seanmurgatroyd says:

      Interesting – I’d describe 50s-70s as my favourite period of this kind of writing, but there are all sorts of authors like Malzberg and Disch I’d identify as fitting in who aren’t mentioned here. Maybe the Cold War was a great generator of dystopian thought?

      • Sally says:

        Wikipedia entries are often dominated by more recent developments, so that older periods look scarcely populated. Which, I agree, is not the case in this genre – some of the best speculative fiction is from the 50s-70s, but so much of it becomes invisible / hard to find when it goes out of print. Especially the short fiction that streamed forth from the magazines of the time.

        I noticed there are a few overlaps between this genre and alternate history, so you might enjoy this site: http://www.uchronia.com/ (one of my fave sites for book recommendations).

  2. seanmurgatroyd says:

    Apparently we can’t nest more than 3 comments! How rude, unless it’s a setting I can change in which case how ignorant of me.

    I definitely know what you mean about the difficulty of finding specfic from that time, particularly given that the vast majority was published as trade paperbacks. My wife and I spend large parts of our holidays in second hand bookshops looking for hidden treasures to add to our collections.

    Thanks for the site – I’m not a huge alternate history reader (I’m all about the future) but interesting to see authors I’ve enjoyed such as MacAuley there! I’m working my way through the divergence pages – what an interesting (and sensible) way to group AH.

    • seanmurgatroyd says:

      The aforementioned wife – also a Sally, as it happens 🙂 – is however into AH so I’ll be sharing this one with her!

  3. GarethD says:

    What definition of dystopian literature are you using?

    I notice most of Heinlein’s stuff like “Citizen of the Galaxy”, Asimov’s Foundation series as well as his Robot series, Stephen Donaldson’s Gap series, Philip Jose Farmer’s Dayworld series, even Herbert’s Dune series are all not on the list.

  4. Bob Bell says:

    Literature has been a defining part of culture since the beginning of language. The dangers of modern times have led to the writing of dystopian novels, novels which warn of an unhappy future. Many people think of Dystopian novels as purely science fiction—while science fiction is a natural fit for a dystopian story, not all dystopian books are considered science fiction. Without further delay, here are the 12 best dystopian novels.

  5. seanmurgatroyd says:

    Wish I’d noticed this, earlier, Bob. I have to say I’d have to think about whether I agree with the list author’s ratings and rankings, but certainly they’re 12 very good ones.

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