Jen Recommends | Five Dystopian Novels



hi guys if you remember a while ago I started the Jen recommend series where I pick a particular genre and they recommend five books from that genre I'm going to link the playlist and the individual videos down below I've already done psychological thrillers apocalyptic fiction poetry short stories and graphic novels so yep those a link down below a while ago Sarna and I over at books and quills filmed a video where we recommended apocalyptic fiction to you and we've said in the future that we'd get together to discuss the scope in literature and I'm sure that we will do that but I have read so much dystopian stuff and so is she then I'm pretty sure that when we do do that despite me doing this video now we're still going to have lots and lots of things to talk about so what I'm going to do today is show you five dystopian books I really really like and then show you a couple of the sokham books for my TBR pile which I'm excited to get to read soon now as I've said in the other videos these five are not necessarily my top five but they are ones I've really really enjoyed so the first one might seem a bit obvious but I couldn't not mention in a well and I went for Animal Farm because Animal Farm is actually my favorite or well I much prefer over 1984 it's very very short I think I read this when I was 11 my dad read this to me and then took me to a production of it at our local university and it scared the living daylights out of me this book and then the play scared me too everyone was wearing very strange pig masks and quite frightening fat farm where the animals decide to form an uprising which is led by pigs and they want to get rid of mr. Jones run the farm for themselves and take all the money and it starts off where all of animals are equal their reserve list of rules that are written on the wall and but then it starts going wrong and some animals become elitist the pigs it's how some kind of utopian society can turn into a very dystopian society very very quickly Oliver edited to comment on Stalin at the time and what he was doing to his Russian people and it's a really really powerful book I have read it I don't know maybe ten times it's a terrifying little thing and I recommend it to everyone if you haven't read it yet then you definitely should let's play a game of how many times Jenna mention this book but I could not mention it so the book of strange you thinks my Mitchell Faber is a dystopian book with a twist because it's primarily about a guy called Peter who is sent across the universe to preach the Word of God to an alien life-form but the reason that he is then there is because the earth is falling apart and we have no fossil fuels and we're running out of all kinds of power so they have gone there because there is a source that they can use and they need to communicate this with the natives who live there and so it's really about colonialization but yes back home the world was falling apart and Peter is talking to his wife via it's not email don't really know what it is kind of like email anyway he's talking to her while he's on this other planet and she's telling him all of the stuff that's gone wrong back home and he feels really distanced from it because obviously he's on the other side of the universe and he's trying to work out how he can emotionally connect with this but even though it's his wife and she's telling him these things he's like um I don't really know how to take this because I can't see it for myself it's really interesting speaks a lot about humanity and relationships so I would recommend that my favorite John Wyndham book is the chrysalids and this is set in a future where the chance of reading true are at less than 50% so birth defects are very high if you have a baby with a birth defect you were supposed to get rid of it you are not supposed to keep it and anyone with birth defects are flush to the edges of society outside of where normal people live so this is written from the point of view of a boy who starts to understand this and then it starts to discover everything that's going on and realizes how terrible it is I think it's very very important book and I think you should going to read I mentioned it in my bearded human book tag which I will link down below to help squish prejudiced about deformities and stuff so yes I this has a very special place in my heart this book don't flush me out to the edges of society the next book is never let me go by Kazuo Ishiguro now most people I think say remains of the day is their favorite book by casual issue guru because it's really unsettling and if it mean it is very very beautiful but I am going to say that never let me go it's my favorite issue guru and I don't care if that means that I am judged for not being artsy enough I really really love never let me go I read it at university I think yes again I read it at university this is about three students in their school and they are learning about growing up and what people expect from them when they are grown up and you think that this is just a novel that's going along you're okay right this is tech to school they're going to grow up they're going to go get jobs etc etc but then I realize that that's not what's going on at all and I can't tell you more than that because I would ruin it because I just would so you're going to have to read it for yourself I imagine a lot of you've read it already but if you haven't please please please do because it is heartbreaking absolutely heartbreaking and it's really about what makes us human and what humans can convince each other of doing when they believe that people are different so is this and finally out of the ones that I've read before I move on to the ones that I haven't read it is soaking book that I would really highly recommend is the stone gods by Jeanette Winterson Jean I think you would particularly like this so this is set in a society in the future where we have ruined the planet and it's time to move on and we're trying to find life on another planet so on our planet currently people can freeze themselves they can freeze their genes you can set yourself so most women are setting themselves at around 24 so that they don't get any older men are setting themselves much later and so it's very attractive to be an older man it's very attractive to be a very young girl and the problem with that is that then because everyone is used to looking young it gets worse and worse and worse until pedophilia it's a thing a massive massive problem and people will revert their genes and try and set themselves back to when they were 12 years old it's really really creepy and horrible and and there's a lot of stuff going on with the development of robots and how robots are starting to evolve it's very different to Jeanette Winston's other books as you can probably tell by what I'm saying he doesn't really write science fiction normally if she wrote tangle wreck which is a why a book with the place of concepts of time and I can notice similar things in this thing she wrote tangle Recoleta but I can see bits in this that remind me of tangle wreck too and and it played with the idea that we have already destroyed our planet once before at least once before and we've already moved on and then we've had to evolve several times and that is really really clever the way she does it yeah it's really really clever it also talks about planets that are like Greek myths so there is a planet that is called Medusa which looks like Medusa with lots of snake rocks so I'll give you an example of how beautiful it is it says there's a planet called Morpheus its atmosphere is dense and heavy like walking in heat after rain anything that flies into its orbit never comes out again you can see in there the litter of spacecraft and tiny asteroids and there's a man and a helmet arms out drifting through eternity get caught there and you hang forever never to wake an endless dream the cloud gas is a narcotic it's a part of space that sleeps like a castle in a wood like an enchantment that mist the magic word no time no motion a world held in waiting so yes so for some of that it is about our world that is falling apart we are seeking to find another world to set up camp and and within all of that we are discovering different worlds that have these really beautiful histories back at home no one knows how to read anymore and there is a beautiful scene where they are going through space and they come across a load of books that one that had been blasted into space because they were useless and their pages are just floating through the back and which is really really sad so yes this is a slightly different just OPM book and it's really really beautiful you should definitely read it so quickly here are a few just books from my TBR piles that I haven't read yet the Swann book by Alexis right which is an Australian dystopian and which says that the aboriginals are still living under the intervention in the north of the country in an environment fundamentally altered by climate change the Swann book tells the story of a meet young woman called oblivia from her brutal gang raped by petrol sniffing news 2 living in a swamp filled with rustling boats and thousands of black swans to her marriage to warrant finch the first Aboriginal president of Australia and her elevation to the position of first lady confined to a tower in a flooded and lawless southern city oblivious story is an extraordinary one also have this on my shelf a while and this is by Jeff noon and it's called vert if any of you guys read this and it says that it doesn't say much on the back verse is exemplary of Jasmine's Seminole style bold evocative and accomplished his characters powerful desire for escape is mirrored in the compulsive and often disturbing dream worlds they visit in their relentless search for fulfillment he has been compared to philip k dick and kurt vonnegut so i'm looking forward to reading that and finally when I picked up recently is dispatches from dystopia histories of places not yet forgotten by Kate Brown this is about Kate as a journalist and a writer traveling around the world visiting abandoned places it says dispatches from dystopia powerfully and movingly narrates the histories of locals that have been silenced broken or contaminated in telling these previously unknown stories she demonstrates the making and unmaking of place and the lives of people who remain in the fragile landscapes that are left behind I have high hopes for this one so I'll report back on it soon so go to the books I wanted to mention to you guys today I've read lots more dystopian books that I could really really recommend I'm sure I will do so in the future let me know in the comments if you have read any of these books or if you'd like to check them out and if you've got any recommendations for dystopian fiction tell me them tell me them in the comments down below I will see you guys very very soon lots rich love bye

28 thoughts on “Jen Recommends | Five Dystopian Novels

  1. I liked 1984 more than Animal Farm. However, i managed to get through Animal Farm much easier and at a quicker pace than 1984.

    The Long Walk by Stephen King is a brilliant dystopian novel.

  2. favourite Ishiguro has to be either never let me go or the one about sleep and forgetting, i love that book so much, but i haven't read any of his 'difficult years' except the one about a stranded concert pianist one fifth of

  3. The Book of New Strange Things is amazing and you can recommend it forever, why isn't it huge? Speaking of which, why does anyone like the appalling, dreary, boring, dreadful, fakey Crimson Petal? I really can't believe it's not two different authors with the same name.

  4. http://www.societashorti.com/jdballard_thegardenoftime.pdf you might like this if you haven't read it. 🙂 Nice review.

  5. Hi Jen, I'm looking for bloggers and booktubers who would like an ebook copy of my debut dystopian thriller to review. I'm a great believer in the right book for the right reader and because like me, you're a fan of dystopian stories, I wondered if you'd be interested. No worries if not. Love this dystopian Vlog!

  6. Hello there 🙂 I posted my video on dystopian novels and this popped up in my recommendations! I'm so glad I found this, will definitely be reading some of these especially The Stone Gods!

  7. So my bookhangover from Never Let Me Go still hasn't really left me two years after reading it. The Martian is the only one after that really has even come close or sort of close. Do you have any idea of some dystopian novel I could read that would pack a similar punch?

  8. I love love love Never Let Me Go. It crushed my soul, but I just can't stop thinking about it. I need to re-read this year. It's probably top ten favorites I have read all my life. Books, not just dystopians.

  9. Great list! Liked many of these myself. Never heard of Never Let Me go though. Will have to check it out. My ultimate has to be Atlas Shrugged though because of it's context and effect on the world in such a strange way. So few books have done that (for better or worse)

  10. I read Animal Farm in High School by myself. I think I was either in my Freshman or Sophomore year, though I can't quite remember. I found it to be very hard to read. Anthem by Ayn Rand is also a very good dystopian book,

  11. I'm currently reading a novel called "On Such A Full Sea" by Chang Rae Lee. I mainly picked it up because it was cheap (I got a brand new one for about 2.50$) but so far I really enjoy it.

  12. my favorite book is the chrysalids n I have read a lot I ordered the book of strange things and I'm get it next week I've been waiting to read it for a year its hard to get current books here in Jamaica sometimes I had to get it in America

  13. Do you do videos later about your favorite dystopian novels or psychological thrillers, etc? I would love to see a video of your favorites

  14. I love Dystopian and sci-fi novels as always I recommend the book Positive by Tom Wellington, I would love to see you and Sanne do more Dystopian recommendations

  15. I binge-read John Wyndham's books when I was 12 or 13 and I'm going through them all again because he is just so creative and it makes me so comfortable to read in his style, I read about half of 1984 a few months ago but i put it down so maybe I'll try Animal Farm instead and I'm looking forward to reading all the others too!!

  16. I came back to this video just to tell you I read Never Let Me Go thanks to you. I loved it. Thank you Jen.

  17. I love dystopian literature and yet the only one I've read from this list is Animal Farm. I remember reading Animal Farm in the corner of a library whilst escaping from a storm, I would love to see a performance of it one day.

    I'd really recommend More Than This by Patrick Ness, if you haven't read it. I picked it up after reading his Chaos trilogy, which I'd also recommend, and became hooked after the main character dies in the first chapter. An amazing read!

  18. This is a great video! Thank you for your insight. I really enjoyed your recommendations – most are books I've yet to read! Tez & I just posted our Apocalyptic top five and it's fun to see how it compares to these. New subscriber!

  19. Jen, if you enjoyed The Book of Strange New Things, you should read The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell. One of my faves, and it seemed a little too eerie for Faber (whom I also love – Under The Skin is one of my fave recents) to have not been at least influenced by it if not completely paying homage to The Sparrow.

  20. I've watched this video some time last week and found a copy of Never Let Me Go in a secondhand bookshop a couple of days ago. I'm liking it so far 🙂

  21. I love dystopian books and I was on the hunt for some in the adult genre, as most I find are in YA. Thanks for the great suggestions! I will definitely check them out! 😊

  22. I finished Never Let Me Go last week and I haven't been able to stop thinking about it! I need one of my friends to read it so I can discuss it with them. I personally would describe it as a "slow burn". so for example, I didn't realize how upsetting/thought-provoking it was until after I set it down and had a good think about it. So so good!!!

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