We spend an amazing amount of time researching preparedness articles, watching videos, and working hard at learning things to do to be prepared. Let’s talk a little bit about the practical applications of these things and how to find ways to see them in action without actually having to go through the apocalypse.
I might be biased when it comes to my top ten choices because I spent my whole life preparing and thinking about them there was no question when I wrote my first fictional book what I wanted it to do. I wanted it to teach others in a fun and entertaining way. Never wanting the information to go unnoticed it even has a reference section in the back that shared the how-to’s of each of the things included so it is no surprise I choose this book to open the discussion on why preppers should read prepper fiction.
1. Beginning of the End — by DJ Cooper
The first book in the Dystopia Series of books takes a hard look at what it would mean to most of us who have some preparedness skills and supplies but are not the super prepper with everything needed to survive for ten years without any assistance or help from the outside world. What do I think you can learn from this book? There are a number of projects detailed in there that range from uses for solar applications to gardening, security, opsec, and more.
2. World Made by Hand — by James Howard Kunstler
This book is set long after the apocalypse and chronicles the way communities might evolve post-apocalypse it details some of the tasks and jobs community members might take on and outlines many interpersonal relationships while continuing to show the strife and problems humans might still face. I recommend this book as not only an amazing look into what comes after but also a feel-good story because after all it can’t be just surviving, we also need to thrive.
3. Dies the Fire — by S.M. Stirling
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—and plunged the world into a dark age humanity was unprepared to face. This book really got me in how it comes from the perspective of the truly unprepared. This is something in apocalyptic fiction that we see too often (super prepper) and the reality is that most of us while prepared can’t even fathom the realities.
4. Alas Babylon — by Pat Frank
The main protagonist, Randy Bragg, was given a brief warning of the coming nuclear war by his brother, who was a member of the Air Force. Randy had enough time to buy supplies at local stores but did not fully realize what was useful and what was not in a disaster until after the attack. Aside from the effects of the radiation or the luck of being upwind of the blast, Alas, Babylon exposed weaknesses of modern living in an unpowered society. Randy and his small community had to figure it out the hard way. My favorite thing I learned was “iron rations” and how important something like this is.
5. One Second After — by William R. Forstchen
What’s not to be said about this book? This book was written as a warning to Congress about the dangers of an EMP, but fast became a classic that convinced many people to become preppers. If you want to have a real look into what it might look like, look no further. We can learn a lot about the realities of this very real threat to our society.
6. Lights Out — by David Crawford
I recall watching this book evolve on Frugal Squirrel, a forum that saw chapters loaded. We all on the forum offered thoughts and feedback, but this is likely my favorite of the list for one reason… The Karate Man. This is not as you might think, it is the way the author portrays a very real and relatable character. He reminds us in this book about the importance of teaching our skills to others or they may be lost forever.
7. Patriots — by James Wesley, Rawles
This book gets a bad rap sometimes because of its overly technical nature but the biggest take away for me from this great story was the organization of the groups. This fictional tale really went into depth about how to build a prepper group and the Opsec surrounding it. This is why it deserves to be on this list.
8. Lucifer’s Hammer — by Larry Niven & Jerry Pournelle
A massive comet breaks apart and bombards the Earth, with catastrophic results: worldwide earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, thousand-foot tidal waves, and seemingly endless rain… With civilization in ruins, individuals band together to survive and to build a new society. Another classic that reminds us that it isn’t always just one thing we need to prepare for but that often disasters can kick off others.
9. The Stand — by Stephen King
A cult classic about “Capt’n Tripps” a plague that decimates most of the world’s population. There is the good ole’ battle between good and evil, but this one hits the list for its entertainment value. There are lots and lots of great apocalyptic books out there but nothing beats characters such as “trash can man” or “Flagg.” If you understand what M-O-O-N spells, you’ve likely been a fan of this book as well.
10. Once Upon An Apocalypse — by Jeff Motes
Not the only Christian-inspired book out there and not about the tribulation or wrath of God. This book would be excellent for your teen to read. Something to share with family to help them see the importance of family. This book tops my list for its realistic character portrayal and shows that not everyone will be evil in the end.
A couple of final thoughts and books to consider. Reading about the SHTF should be realistic but sometimes just for fun. Have you considered entertainment when there is no electricity? Learn to play an instrument and store away some good reads in all genres.
Would you like to Check Out the same scenario in different places? My latest book in the Fall Series of Books is set in Cincinnati, but there are other places, from Florida to Alaska to explore in this amazing project. Give it a peek.