Top 10 dystopian novels for teenagers

Guardian – Gemma Malley from Guardian wrote about dystopian novels for teenagers but I think it’s for older people too. I mean, just look at the list. 1984, Clockwork orange, Children of men…I don’t know why this titles are for teenagers but it’s her prerogative to say so if she thinks it’s so…lol. Go look original article. Or…just read it here 😉 :

1. 1984 by George Orwell
The original and best – who can forget Winston in his fight against the machine of authoritarian government? This book stayed with me for years after I read it and probably informed many of my political views today. Big Brother, Room 101, the Mind Police – all brilliantly realised and wonderfully narrated, right up to the chilling end.

2. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
Dystopia or utopia? A brilliant riposte for those who consider pleasure-seeking to be their only aim in life, and a terrifying glimpse into a perfectly ordered future.

3. The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
I love this book. It is compelling in its detail and its too-real depiction of a post-nuclear world where fertile women are used as breeding machines. Dystopian books work best when there is a logic to the horror. Margaret Atwood paints a world that is utterly imaginable and that’s why it’s so powerful.

4. How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff
A new classic, with one of the most original voices I’ve read in a long time. This book tells of love and loss and of finding peace in a war-torn world.

5. A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess
Not for the faint hearted, A Clockwork Orange has become infamous because of Stanley Kubric’s film version. But the book is definitely worth a read and has huge resonance today. Once you get to grips with the Nadsat slang, it’s a thrilling – if abhorrent – tale of gang violence and rehabilitation that explores free will and what it means to be an individual.

6. The Children of Men by PD James
Again, most people will know of the film version, but this book is wonderful in its description of a world that’s dying, as well as depicting brilliantly the corrupting influence of power.

7. The Chrysalids by John Wyndam
Another post-nuclear world; this time the chemical fallout means that humans are being born with increasing deformities which must be hidden from the state because just one extra toe can mean a death sentence… John Wyndam is an amazing storyteller and this page-turning thriller will have teenagers reading under the bedcovers until the small hours.

8. Lord of the Flies by William Golding
A must read for all teenagers (and their parents) – Lord of the Flies is as relevant now as it was when it was written in the 1950s. A plane crash leaves a group of schoolboys stranded on a desert island – and what starts as a survival tale soon turns into a gripping thriller and a compelling commentary on civilisation, competition, and the animal instincts that live within us all.

9. The Children’s Story by James Clavell
I’m ashamed to say that I borrowed this book from my school library when I was nine and never returned it. In my defence, it’s one of the most chilling books I’ve ever read. Set in a classroom, it shows how susceptible young minds are, how vulnerable, how easy to control. In a few short pages (and just 25 minutes), a silky voiced teacher succeeds in brainwashing a classroom of children, turning them against their country, against their parents, against basic freedoms. As the book’s blurb says, The Children’s Story is not just for children…

10. The Diary of Anne Frank
It’s easy, when reading dystopian novels, to close the cover and thank our lucky stars that it isn’t true, that it’s just fiction, that nothing like that would ever really happen. That’s why Anne Frank’s diary is such an important book. Because things like that do happen. Did happen. And we should never forget it.

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