Dystopians are all into reaching into the dark corners of our minds: where will we be in 50 years? 100? How far can our society until we crumble beneath the weight of ourselves, forced to live the consequences of our mistakes. This list is dedicated to the books that allow hope to spring from those dark places.
For Darkness Shows The Stars (For Darkness Shows The Stars #1) by Diana Peterfreund
Generations ago, a genetic experiment gone wrong—the Reduction—decimated humanity, giving rise to a nobility who outlawed most technology. Four years ago Elliot refused to run away with her childhood sweetheart, the servant Kai, choosing duty to her family’s estate over love. But now the world has changed: a new class of Post-Reductionists are fighting for control, Elliot’s estate is sinking into poverty, and she’s forced to rent land to a mysterious cloud fleet that includes famous explorer Captain Malikai Wentforth — the boy of her childhood.
Divergent (Divergent #1) by Veronica Roth
In Beatrice Prior’s dystopian Chicago world, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue–Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). However, when Beatrice leaves her world of the selfless behind to join Dauntless, she sheds her name and becomes Tris. However, Tris has her own handful of secrets that theaten to not only destroy her but the very foundation on which her society has been built.
Partials (Partials #1) by Dan Wells
The human race is all but extinct after a war with Partials—engineered beings identical to humans—have brought the population to near extinction. Now, the remaining tens of thousands of survivors have huddled together on Long Island, the few percentage of humans immune to the virus the Partials spread. Kira, a sixteen-year-old medic-in-training, is on the front lines of this battle and she’s not content to stand by and watch. But as her desperate attempts at survival bring her closer to the Partials, she finds that they were connected by a common goal long ago.
Blood Red Road (Dust Lands #1) by Moira Young
After four cloaked horsemen kidnap her twin brother Lugh from their home in the wastelands they call home, Saba teams up with fellow fighter Jack and the Free Hawks, a girl gang of Revolutionaries. Finally escaping her home at Silverlake and confronting the real world, Saba learns that she is a fierce fighter, a strong spirit, and a powerful opponent. She will stop at nothing to get her family back, even if it means taking on a corrupt society hell-bent on keeping her away.
All These Things I’ve Done (Birthright #1) by Gabrielle Zevin
In 2083, chocolate and coffee are illegal and New York City is rife with crime and poverty. And yet, for Anya Balanchine, the sixteen-year-old daughter of the city’s most notorious (and dead) crime boss, life is fairly routine. That is until her ex is poisoned by the chocolate her family manufactures and the police think she’s to blame. Suddenly, Anya finds herself thrust into the spotlight–at school, in the news, and within her mafia family.
Enclave (Razorland #1) by Ann Aguirre
In a post-apocalyptic world where hordes of flesh-eating monsters roam the overground, Deuce lives in tunnels with her people, hiding from the outside. Until one day, she is cast out of her village and forced to the surface along with a boy named Fade.
Insignia (Insignia #1) by S.J Kincaid
The earth is in the middle of WWIII: a fight for control of the solar system. And as our natural resources and reserves deplete, the enemy is gaining a strong foothold. The salvation may be Tom Raines. He’s always been an average kid but his virtual-reality gaming skills might give him the potential to turn the tides of this war in his favor. However, there is always a heavy price to pay for success.
Masque of the Red Death (Masque of the Red Death #1) by Bethany Griffin
A devastating plague has decimated the population, and those who are left live in fear of catching it as the city crumbles around them. So what does Araby Worth have to live for? Nights in the Debauchery Club and a way to forget it all. But in her search for oblivion she finds more than she bargained for…and maybe even something and someone to fight for.
Wither (Chemical Gardens #1) by Lauren DeStefano
Rhine lives in a world where her maximum age will be 20, the result of a botched scientific effort to create the perfect human race. Because of this, girls are stolen and sold off to rich husbands in order to procreate before their deaths. When Rhine is dumped into Linden’s mansion and meets her sister wives Jenna and Cecily, she will do just about anything to survive.
Legend (Legend #1) by Marie Lu
In a world where the western United States has been converted to a war-ridden Republic, June is a military prodigy and a member to one of the most elite families in the country. Deep in the slum, Day is the Republic’s most-wanted criminal. There’s no reason for their lives to cross until June’s brother, Metias, is murdered and Day is the prime target. Enraged and alone, June will stop at nothing to avenge her brother’s death, even if it means sinking undercover into the slums herself. However, the closer she gets, the more she realizes how little she knows about her Republic, the secrets behind her brothers death, and Day himself.