Dystopian Teen Fiction

Across the Universe by Beth Revis. 2011
Teenaged Amy, a cryogenically frozen passenger on the spaceship Godspeed, wakes up to discover that someone may have tried to murder her. First in a trilogy.

Among the Hidden by Margaret Peterson Haddix. 1998
In a future where the Population Police enforce the law limiting a family to only two children, Luke has lived all his twelve years in isolation and fear on his family's farm, until another "third" convinces him that the government is wrong. This is the first in a seven-part series.

Birthmarked by Caragh M. O’Brien. 2010
In a future world baked dry by the sun and divided into those who live inside the wall and those who live outside it, sixteen-year-old midwife Gaia Stone is forced into a difficult choice when her parents are arrested and taken into the city. First in a trilogy.

The Blending Time by Michael P. Kinch. 2010
In the harsh world of 2069, ravaged by plagues and environmental disasters, friends Jaym, Reya, and D'Shay are chosen to help repopulate Africa as their mandatory Global Alliance work, but civil war and mercenaries opposed to the Blending Program separate them and threaten their very lives. First in a series.

Blood Red Road by Moira Young. 2011
In a distant future, eighteen-year-old Lugh is kidnapped, and while his twin sister Saba and nine-year-old Emmi are trailing him across bleak Sandsea they are captured, too, and taken to brutal Hopetown, where Saba is forced to be a cage fighter until new friends help plan an escape. First in a trilogy.

Breathe by Sarah Crossan. 2012
In a barren land, a shimmering glass dome houses the survivors of the Switch, the period when oxygen levels plunged and the green world withered. A state lottery meant a lucky few won safety, while the rest suffocated in the thin air. And now Alina, Quinn, and Bea--an unlikely trio, each with their own agendas, their own longings and fears--walk straight into the heart of danger. With two days' worth of oxygen in their tanks, they leave the dome. What will happen on the third day?

Bumped by Megan McCafferty. 2011
In 2036 New Jersey, when teens are expected to become fanatically religious wives and mothers or high-priced Surrogettes for couples made infertile by a widespread virus, sixteen-year-old identical twins Melody and Harmony find in one another the courage to believe they have choices. The story continues in Thumped.

Candor by Pam Bachorz. 2009
For a fee, "model teen" Oscar Banks has been secretly--and selectively-- sabotaging the subliminal messages that program the behavior of the residents of Candor, Florida, until his attraction to a rebellious new girl threatens to expose his subterfuge.

The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken. 2012
Sixteen-year-old Ruby breaks out of a government-run 'rehabilitation camp' for teens who acquired dangerous powers after surviving a virus that wiped out most American children.

The Declaration by Gemma Malley. 2007
In 2140 England, where drugs enable people to live forever and children are illegal, teenaged Anna, an obedient "Surplus" training to become a house servant, discovers that her birth parents are trying to find her. First in a trilogy.

Delirium by Lauren Oliver. 2011
Lena looks forward to receiving the government-mandated cure that prevents the delirium of love and leads to a safe, predictable, and happy life, until ninety-five days before her eighteenth birthday and her treatment, when she falls in love. First in a trilogy.

Divergent by Veronica Roth. 2011
In a future Chicago, sixteen-year-old Beatrice Prior must choose among five predetermined factions to define her identity for the rest of her life, a decision made more difficult when she discovers that she is an anomaly who does not fit into any one group, and that the society she lives in is not perfect after all. First in a trilogy.

Epic by Conor Kostick. 2008
On New Earth, a world based on a video role-playing game, fourteen-year-old Erik pursuades his friends to aid him in some unusual gambits in order to save Erik's father from exile and safeguard the futures of each of their families. The story continues in Saga.

Eve by Anna Carey. 2011
In 2032, sixteen years after a deadly virus has wiped out most of the earth's population, Eve discovers the terrible fate that awaits students when they graduate from their all-girls school, and she sets off on a treacherous journey into the wilds of The New America, searching for a place where she can survive. First in a trilogy.

Feed by M.T. Anderson. 2002
In a future where most people have computer implants in their heads to control their environment, a boy meets an unusual girl who is in serious trouble.

The Giver by Lois Lowry. 1993
Twelve-year-old Jonas lives in a seemingly ideal world. Not until he is given his life assignment as the Receiver does he begin to understand the dark secrets behind this fragile community. First in a series.

Gone by Michael Grant. 2008
In a small town on the coast of California, everyone over the age of fourteen suddenly disappears, setting up a battle between the remaining town residents and the students from a local private school, as well as those who have "The Power" and are able to perform supernatural feats and those who do not. First in a series.

Grace by Elizabeth Scott. 2010
Sixteen-year-old Grace travels on a decrepit train toward a border that may not exist, recalling events that brought her to choose life over being a suicide bomber, and dreaming of freedom from the extremist religion-based government of Keran Berj.

House of the Scorpion by Nancy Farmer. 2002
In a future where humans despise clones, Matt enjoys special status as the young clone of El Patron, the 142-year-old leader of a corrupt drug empire nestled between Mexico and the United States.

How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff. 2004
To get away from her pregnant stepmother in New York City, fifteen-year-old Daisy goes to England to stay with her aunt and cousins, with whom she instantly bonds, but soon war breaks out and rips apart the family while devastating the land.

Incarceron by Catherine Fisher. 2010
To free herself from an upcoming arranged marriage, Claudia, the daughter of the Warden of Incarceron, a futuristic prison with a mind of its own, decides to help a young prisoner escape. The story concludes in Sapphique.

Inside Out by Maria V. Snyder. 2010
Keep Your Head Down. Don't Get Noticed. Or Else. I'm Trella. I'm a scrub. A nobody. One of thousands who work the lower levels, keeping Inside clean for the Uppers. I've got one friend, do my job and try to avoid the Pop Cops. So what if I occasionally use the pipes to sneak around the Upper levels? The only neck at risk is my own until I accidentally start a rebellion and become the go-to girl to lead a revolution. The story continues in Outside In.

The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness. 2008
Pursued by power-hungry Prentiss and mad minister Aaron, young Todd and Viola set out across New World searching for answers about his colony's true past and seeking a way to warn the ship bringing hopeful settlers from Old World. First in a trilogy.

Legend by Marie Lu. 2011
In a dark future, when North America has split into two warring nations, fifteen-year-olds Day, a famous criminal, and prodigy June, the brilliant soldier hired to capture him, discover that they have a common enemy. First in a trilogy.

Life as We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer. 2006
Through journal entries sixteen-year-old Miranda describes her family's struggle to survive after a meteor hits the moon, causing worldwide tsunamis, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions. First in a series.

The Limit by Kristen Landon. 2010
When his family exceeds its legal debt limit, thirteen-year-old Matt is sent to the Federal Debt Rehabilitation Agency workhouse, where he discovers illicit activities are being carried out using the children who have been placed there.

The Line by Teri Hall. 2010
Rachel thinks that she and her mother are safe working for Ms. Moore at her estate close to The Line, an invisible border of the Unified States, but when Rachel has an opportunity to Cross into the forbidden zone, she is both frightened and intrigued.

Little Brother by Cory Doctorow. 2008
After being interrogated for days by the Department of Homeland Security in the aftermath of a major terrorist attack on San Francisco, California, seventeen-year-old Marcus, released into what is now a police state, decides to use his expertise in computer hacking to set things right.

Lockdown: Escape from Furnace by Alexander Gordon Smith. 2009
When fourteen-year-old Alex is framed for murder, he becomes an inmate in the Furnace Penitentiary, where brutal inmates and sadistic guards reign, boys who disappear in the middle of the night sometimes return weirdly altered, and escape might just be possible. First in a series.

Matched by Ally Condie. 2010
All her life, Cassia has never had a choice. The Society dictates everything: when and how to play, where to work, where to live, what to eat and wear, when to die, and most importantly to Cassia as she turns 17, who to marry. When she is Matched with her best friend Xander, things couldn't be more perfect. But why did her neighbor Ky's face show up on her match disk as well? First in a trilogy.

The Maze Runner by James Dashner. 2009
Sixteen-year-old Thomas wakes up with no memory in the middle of a maze and realizes he must work with the community in which he finds himself if he is to escape. First in a trilogy.

Mortal Engines by Philip Reeve. 2003
In the distant future, when cities move about and consume smaller towns, a fifteen-year-old apprentice is pushed out of London by the man he most admires and must seek answers in the perilous Out-Country, aided by one girl and the memory of another. First in a series.

The Other Side of the Island by Allegra Goodman. 2008
Born in the eighteenth year of Enclosure, ten-year-old Honor lives in a highly regulated colony with her defiant parents, but when they have an illegal second child and are taken away, it is up to Honor and her friend Helix, another "unpredictable," to uncover a terrible secret about their island and the corporation that runs everything.

The Program by Suzanne Young. 2013
When suicide becomes a worldwide epidemic, the only known cure is The Program, a treatment in which painful memories are erased, a fate worse than death to seventeen-year-old Sloane who knows that The Program will steal memories of her dead brother and boyfriend.

Rash by Pete Hautman. 2007
In a future society that has decided it would "rather be safe than free," sixteen-year-old Bo's anger control problems land him in a tundra jail where he survives with the help of his running skills and an artificial intelligence program named Bork.

Rot & Ruin by Jonathan Maberry. 2010
In a post-apocalyptic world where fences and border patrols guard the few people left from the zombies that have overtaken civilization, fifteen-year-old Benny Imura is finally convinced that he must follow in his older brother's footsteps and become a bounty hunter. First in a series.

The Secret Under My Skin by Janet Elizabeth McNaughton. 2005
In the year 2368, humans exist under dire environmental conditions and one young woman, rescued from a workcamp and chosen for a special duty, uses her love of learning to discover the truth about the planet's future and her own dark past.

The Selection by Kiera Cass. 2012
Sixteen-year-old America Singer is living in the caste-divided nation of Illea, which formed after the war that destroyed the United States. America is chosen to compete in the Selection--a contest to see which girl can win the heart of Illea's prince--but all she really wants is a chance for a future with her secret love, Aspen, who is a caste below her. First in a trilogy.

Sharp North by Patrick Cave. 2006
In a futuristic world, Great Families rule Britain through a caste system where reproduction is seriously restricted, while the families keep illegal clones or "spares" of themselves.

Ship Breaker by Paolo Bacigalupi. 2010
In a futuristic world, teenaged Nailer scavenges copper wiring from grounded oil tankers for a living, but when he finds a beached clipper ship with a girl in the wreckage, he has to decide if he should strip the ship for its wealth or rescue the girl.

The Sky Inside by Clare B. Dunkle. 2008
Martin lives in a perfect world--until the day a stranger arrives to take away all of the little children, including Martin's sister.

Starters by Lissa Price. 2012
To support herself and her younger brother in a future Beverly Hills, sixteen-year-old Callie hires her body out to seniors who want to experience being young again, and she lives a fairy-tale life until she learns that her body will commit murder, unless her mind can stop it.

Uglies by Scott Westerfeld. 2005
Just before their sixteenth birthdays, when they will will be transformed into beauties whose only job is to have a great time, Tally's best friend runs away and Tally must find her and turn her in, or never become pretty at all. First in a trilogy.

Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi. 2012
Aria and Perry, two teens from radically different societies--one highly advanced, the other primitive--hate being dependent on one another until they overcome their prejudices and fall in love, knowing they can't stay together. First in a trilogy.

The Unidentified by Rae Mariz. 2010
In a futuristic alternative school set in a shopping mall where video game-playing students are observed and used by corporate sponsors for market research, Katey "Kid" Dade struggles to figure out where she fits in and whether she even wants to.

Unwind by Neal Shusterman. 2007
In a future world where those between the ages of thirteen and eighteen can have their lives "unwound" and their body parts harvested for use by others, three teens go to extreme lengths to uphold their beliefs--and, perhaps, save their own lives.

Wither by Lauren DeStefano. 2011
After modern science turns every human into a genetic time bomb with men dying at age twenty-five and women dying at age twenty, girls are kidnapped and married off in order to repopulate the world. First in a trilogy.

XVI by Julia Karr. 2011
At fifteen, Nina Oberon leads a pretty normal life that includes family, friends, and school. However, Nina lives in a totalitarian future society in which all girls are required to get a Governing Council-ordered "XVI" wrist tattoo on their 16th birthdays, announcing to the world that they are ready for sex. Becoming a "sex-teen" is Nina's worst fear until, right before her birthday, her mother is brutally attacked and reveals a shocking truth to Nina with her dying breaths that changes everything Nina thought she knew about her life. Now, alone but for her younger sister, Nina must try to discover who she really is, all the while staying one step ahead of her mother's killer.