The End of the World as we Know it

Destruction of the world as we know it. There’s just something about it, isn’t there? It shouldn’t be so satisfying to read and yet it is. Almost like picking a scab off a half-healed wound. It has inspired countless books and short stories of every type, from children’s books to adult fiction and everything in between. My own personal journey with dystopian fiction began in my final year at school when I was required to write an essay on a topic of my choice. Somehow I managed to gravitate towards the topic of dystopic fiction through Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World and Margaret Attwood’s Oryx and Crake. I followed the Oryx and Crake series, and incidentally, had the opportunity to attend the Edinburgh Book Festival in 2013 where Attwood launched the last of the series, Maddaddam. More recently there has been a boom in the number of dystopian fiction novels produced, particularly in the Young Adult section of publishing. This is perhaps thanks to the success of the Hunger Games book series and film tie-ins. Oddly enough, research done at the start of this year shows that those purchasing Young Adult styled novels are actually more likely to be over the age of 20, with 79% of the market being over the age of 18[1]. Is this due to a lack of adult dystopic fiction? Perhaps it is. Yet the genre has been around for so long that it is impossible not to find something worth reading. Perhaps they just want to read something new and shiny. Perhaps the films are just what make it appealing and therefore are more widely marketed and so people know what to look for? Whatever it may be, it’s safe to say that the genre is on the rise. But it is strange that… read more →