Bacteria, Viruses, Civilizations Crumbling

Considering current events and the discussions of pandemics threatening human existence, here’s a list of five of my favorite novels with such story-lines. It’s a short list, no spoilers. For my money, they are all great reads. After all, if we are to stay home, limit our traveling, and practice ‘social distancing’ what better way than to curl up with your favorite beverage and a good book?

My all-time favorite is “Earth Abides” by George R. Stewart. Against the backdrop of crumbling civilization, the protagonist seeks other survivors after the plague has wiped out most other inhabitants. Written in 1949, this post-apocalyptic novel inspired Stephen King’s “The Stand”.

Steven King’s “The Stand” is a post-apocalyptic horror/fantasy novel about the release of a strain of modified influenza, a pandemic killing most of the world’s population.

Then there is Ken Follett’s epic historical novel “World Without End” set in the Middle Ages against the backdrop of the plague.

In Michael Creighton’s “Andromeda Strain” a satellite falls to earth bringing a deadly virus.

And finally, for an ‘out of this world’ read, there’s Tess Gerritsen’s “Gravity” set on the International Space Station as astronauts and NASA struggle to contain a deadly virus outbreak on-board. No such thing as ‘social distancing’ here, folks.

All are wonderful reads. Hope you can find time to enjoy them, too. If you have any recommendations of your own, please feel free to list them. Always up for a good read.

9 thoughts on “Bacteria, Viruses, Civilizations Crumbling

  1. Yep, good choices. Always fall back on the classics to get you through tough times. Although these days I prefer escape through lighter reads. Those first few pages of The Stand are enough to send me running into my own library digging up books with lighter themes. Escapism right now is what works for me. Be it romance, suspense or thriller, I need a break from apocalyptic story lines.

  2. “The Stand”. There was another King, writing as Bachman.“The Running Man” where the upper class had masks and smog filter nose plugs that worked, the rest did not. Useless masks sounds familiar. And Vonnegut’s “Cat’sCradle.” I think I read The Stand for about six months one week.

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