Survive a Zombie Apocalypse with These Six Must-Reads

The world is ending and we’re all moments away from being in the middle of a zombie apocalypse.

OK, not really. But you might think that was the case if you watched the trailer for The Girl with All the Gifts, a new movie based on the 2014 novel by M.R. Carey. While the film came out in England last September, it was just released in the U.S. and is in theaters now. And after watching this trailer, we were definitely ready for this zombie tale to scare our pants off:

The Girl with All the Gifts
tells the story of a world ravaged by a fungus that turns people into “hungries,” or, mindless flesh-eating zombies. But a few hybrid children exist who still want to feed but retain their humanity. Melanie (Sennia Nanua) is one of these children, and she forms a special bond with her teacher, Helen (Gemma Arterton). While Helen shows compassion for Melanie and the other children, Dr. Caldwell (Glenn Close) is bent on studying and dissecting them in order to find a cure for the fungus. While the world falls apart around them, Melanie and Helen form a bond that will change all of their futures.

Creepy, dark and touching, this is a movie that we knew we had to check out and we’re actually still having nightmares. But it also got us thinking, if we were stuck in a zombie apocalypse, what are the books we’d want with us to make it through? What would help us survive, or simply provide some escapist entertainment when the zombies just won’t stop trying to eat our brains?

Here are the six books we would definitely want on hand in a zombie-ridden world:

Zombies: A Brief History of Decay, Olivier Peru (author), Sophian Cholet (illustrator), Simon Champelovier (illustrator) (Insight Comics, April 4, 2017)

With the zombies are descending, the first thing we’re going to want to do is read up on what to expect. Peru’s graphic novel dives deep into the heart of an apocalypse, telling the story of Sam Coleman. He’s an ordinary man who manages to make it out of zombie-torn Seattle, though he’s forced to leave his daughter behind. With things seeming to quiet (yeah, right), he decides to go back and look for her. Since we’re sure we’re going to need plenty of bravery and hope in order to survive the coming ordeal, A Brief History of Decay seems like a good place to find some inspiration. And maybe some pointers on how to survive this thing.

The Final Day: A Novel, William R. Forstchen (Forge Books, January 3, 2017)

Forstchen’s One Second After series is a bestseller for a reason: he logically and smartly predicts exactly what will happen if humanity faces an apocalyptic situation (in this case, an electromagnetic pulse). In The Final Day, the third novel in the series, John Matherson and his group have worked hard to rebuild their community after the world fell apart. Now, larger forces are stepping in, including a new government who’s quickly dividing up the U.S. and throwing out the Constitution as we know it. Matherson will have to fight hard to keep surviving, only this time their enemy isn’t starvation or nuclear bombs, it’s an autocratic regime who’s threatening to tear about everything they’ve built. We’re sure that the apocalypse won’t just end with zombies, and The Final Day will give us a road map for how to deal with a ravaged and corrupt government after everything falls apart.

Alchemy of Herbs, Rosalee de la Forêt (Hay House, April 4, 2017)

With no internet to fall back on, we’re going to need some useful books. Fast. And what better than a cooking guide that also gives us some natural remedies? Because let’s face it, if the zombies don’t get us, the lack of medical care will. De la Forêt’s cookbook offers easy and delicious ways to fight off colds, headaches, infections, etc., all using simple ingredients you most likely already have at home. Think, ginger lemon tea for a cold, or a cayenne concoction to fight those sore muscles (from all the zombie slaying, naturally). We can’t think of anything more useful when we’re pillaging for supplies and worrying over that tiny cut that seems to only be getting worse…

New York 2140, Kim Stanley Robinson (Orbit, March 14, 2017)

During the zombie apocalypse, there will be something morbidly exciting about imagining the future that could have been (you know, the one not filled with brain-eating killers). Which is why we’ll definitely want New York 2140 with us, a novel where Robinson paints a picture of the future of the U.S. Not that this future is any brighter than zombies. In a world where the sea levels have risen, New York City is like a modern day, more hardcore Venice, where everyone lives in isolated skyscrapers and the streets are all canals. Robinson takes us through the lives of some of the cities inhabitants, painting a broad picture of a drowned city. We’re not sure this will lift your spirits during the zombie apocalypse, but it will certainly be entertaining to picture a completely different type of future.

100 Deadly Skills: Survival Edition, Clint Emerson (Touchstone, October 18, 2016)

Let’s get real: for the most part, not one of us actually knows how to survive without electricity and grocery stores. In order to make it through this zombie apocalypse, we’re going to need to acquire some real-world survival skills pretty darn fast. So we’re definitely holding onto a copy of Emerson’s book. As a former Navy SEAL, he obviously knows his stuff, and this book will teach you the simple basics of surviving in the wild. From building fires to finding food, we have a feeling that 100 Deadly Skills will become our zombie apocalypse Bible.

How to Date a Douchebag: The Failing Hours, Sara Ney (January 31, 2017)

When all else fails, it’s time to lose yourself in an escapist read. Let Ney’s hilarious prose and well-crafted characters transport you to a world far away from all those “hungries.” Sure, it might be hard to find a place quiet or safe enough to get lost in a good book with the apocalypse raging around you. But if you do, Ney’s Douchebag series is a great choice. Funny, charming and heartfelt, The Failing Hours gives us the story of Zeke Daniels, the villain from Ney’s first book in the series. Zeke seems like such a douchebag that there’s no chance for redemption (much like a zombie??), but it’s through his relationship with the quiet and sweet Violet DeLuca that we start to see another side to the boy who’s used to keeping everyone at arm’s length. You’ll definitely fall in love with this tale – you just might have to fight off some zombies while you do it.

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