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Best Post-Apocalyptic 
Audiobooks

Here we are folks, the best post-apocalyptic audiobooks, according to Audiobooks Nest. Oh, and the apocalyptic ones too (obvs). Zombies, plagues, natural phenomena, if it means nothing is ever the same again, I'm all over it.

The apocalyptic and post-apocalyptic genre is not all adventures and thrillers (though I promise, those audio books are here). It's actually remarkably diverse. In fact, this list has everything from dystopian silos to magic worlds to character based humour. What they all have in common is that they capture the imagination. And, of course, they’re brilliantly narrated.

Best Post-Apocalyptic Audiobooks 2021

Given the mess that was 2020, it’s unsurprising that 2021 was an excellent year for those looking for the best post apocalyptic audio books. See if you can spot them below. 

Best Post-Apocalyptic Audiobooks 2022

From How High We Go In The Dark to Clean Air, 2022 is a year full of surprises.

Top 10 Post-Apocalyptic Audiobooks

1

World War Z

By

Max Brooks

Read By

Christopher Ragland, Rupert Farley, Nigel Pilkington, Jennifer Woodward, David Thorpe, Adam Sims, Robert Slade

This is the all-singing, all-dancing zombie saga. You might call it a zaga... (I’ll see myself out). It's no wonder this remains one of the top post apocalypse books on Audible, Amazon and pretty much everywhere else. The whole thing is written in the style of an account of the war against the undead, as told by its survivors. And it is main character Max Brooks (yes, as in the author) who travels the US to record their accounts. With seven stellar narrators, the audiobook version is just as slick and beautifully produced as the Brad Pitt blockbuster it went on to become.

2

The Road

By

Cormac McCarthy

Read By

Tom Stechschulte

I rarely agree with award verdicts, but this thoroughly deserves its Pulitzer Prize for fiction. It is a novel that strips bare both the Earth and literary conventions. The characters don't even have names. What is left is a tough, but moving look at the father-son relationship wrapped up to become a giant among the best post apocalyptic survival audio books. And this isn't a high literature thing. It's just good.

3

Bird Box

By

Josh Malerman

Read By

Katharine Mangold

Close your eyes. Keep them closed. One look and you’re gone. You’re not you anymore. Oh. My. Days.. Utterly terrifying and more gripping than a sheep in a Velcro factory, this is another consistent showing on the list of top post apocalypse books on Audible. And yes, I know I should like uplifting books about the wonders of humankind, but I like this.

4

The Girl with All the Gifts

By

M.R. Carey

Read By

Finty Williams

Next up on this highly unofficial list of survival fiction audiobooks, this dark, intricate web of a thriller tells the story of Melanie, a student in a prison/school run by the military. The vibe throughout is creepy and mysterious, twisting and turning to a shocking reveal. And even then, it keeps on truckin’. Finty Williams manages to strike a silky balance between earnestness and detached story-telling, allowing the listener enough leeway to form their own view of the characters. I love the scientific basis of the story and the fact that it poses questions about the nature of danger and the sacrifices worth making to save humankind.

5

The Stand

By

Stephen King

Read By

Grover Gardner

It’s Stephen King. It’s Stephen King plus apocalypse. Read it. Done that? Rinse and repeat.

6

Until the End of the World

By

Sarah Lyons Fleming

Read By

Julia Whelan

I will read anything by SLF and this was my gateway book. This is classic zombie adventure perfection narrated by she-who-can-narrate-no-wrong, Julia Whelan. Main character Cassie Forrest’s dry wit, pessimism and obsession with food sing to my soul. There’s zombie fighting, society building, friendships and conflict. Everything you need from an end of the world audiobook. Even the love stories strike that perfect balance of being authentic, but not sugary sweet. The best part? This is the first of a four-part series plus another connected series.

7

Wool

By

Hugh Howey

Read By

Susannah Harker

1984, meet the end of the world. You two will get on famously in this dark imagining of an unforgiving future Earth. Howey's tale sees humanity driven underground, into silos. Life is grim and restrictive, not just because of the setting, but also the sinister control exerted by the powers that be.

8

Station Eleven

By

Emily St. John Mandel

Read By

Jack Hawkins

At the unlikely junction of pandemic adventure and literary fiction are the magnificently intertwined stories of Station Eleven. Insightful, ethereal and moving, this is a completely different specie of fiction, very much deserving of its spot on this top ten end of the world audio books.

9

The Apocalypse Seven

By

Gene Doucette

Read By

Erin Bennett, Kiff VandenHeuvel, Juliette Goglia, Zeno Robinson, Will Collyer, Grace Rolek, Farah Merani

There are no plagues. There's no great war or zombie invasion. There is only the end. The Apocalypse 7 focuses on a fun, endearing cast of characters, portrayed brilliantly by a cast of narrators, as they come to terms with their predicament. And try to work out what in the world is going on.

10

Swan Song

By

Robert R. McCammon

Read By

Tom Stechschulte

Imagine the scariest, most gruesome, darkest end to the world possible. Then add a child with visions. Oh, and monsters, both super and natural. Narrated in the deep, velvety voice of Tom Stechschulte, this is definitely on the horror side of the post apocalypse audio books scale. Terrifying and gripping and just plain good.

Best of the Rest Post-Apocalyptic Books

Phew. That was difficult. There are so many great apocalyptic and post-apocalyptic stories, choosing top 10 was a wrench. So here are yet more brilliant end of the world audiobooks, listed A-Z.

14

By

Read By

Peter Clines

Ray Porter

Gripping Sci-Fi with a Great Squad.

After the Silence

By

Read By

Devon C. Ford

Kevin Kemp

Great Narration, Interesting Journey

All the Stars in the Sky

By

Read By

Sarah Lyons Fleming

Julia Whelan

A perfect end to the perfect zombie series.

And After

By

Read By

Sarah Lyons Fleming

Julia Whelan

Awesome Sequel. Does not disappoint.

Cage of Souls

By

Read By

Adrian Tchaikovsky

David Thorpe

Imagine Mark and Jez of Peep Show living their best/worst lives in a futuristic, post-apocalyptic hellscape with monsters and mutants. That just about covers it...

Differently Morphous

By

Read By

Yahtzee Croshaw

Yahtzee Croshaw

Joyous, Funny, Smart. A Douglas Adams vibe.

Edge of Collapse

By

Read By

Kyla Stone

Stacey Glemboski

William R. Forstchen Meets K.L Slater

Fail State

By

Read By

John Birmingham

Rupert Degas

Same Great Characters, A Clever Continuation

Femlandia

By

Read By

Christina Dalcher

Brittany Pressley, Cassandra Morris

Very Close To Living Up To Expectations

Gray: Part III

By

Read By

Lou Cadle

Lauren Fortgang

The perfect ending to this gripping trilogy

How High We Go in the Dark

By

Read By

Sequoia Nagamatsu

Jason Culp, Stephanie Komure, Micky Shiloah, Joe Knezevich, Brianna Ishibashi, Kotaro Watanabe, Matthew Bridges, Kurt Kanazawa, Greg Watanabe, Jeanne Sakata, MacLeod Andrews, Keisuke Hoashi, Brian Nishii, Julia Whelan

High Praise for this Darkest of Tales

Instauration

By

Read By

Sarah Lyons Fleming

Luke Daniels, Thérèse Plummer

Bittersweet - why did this brilliant series have to end?

Jam

By

Read By

Yahtzee Croshaw

Yahtzee Croshaw

Genius Absurdist Hilarity

Kings of a Dead World

By

Read By

Jamie Mollart

Mike Rogers

Half Stargate Universe with its bleak futility and half Man in the High Castle with its rumbling underbelly.

Life As We Knew It

By

Read By

Susan Beth Pfeffer

Emily Bauer

Sweet Coming of Age Apocalypse

Lock In

By

Read By

John Scalzi

Amber Benson, Wil Wheaton

A Fascinating Futuristic Reality Sets This Apart. Reminds me of iRobot.

London

By

Read By

Frank Tayell

Tim Bruce

Apocalypse and Crumpets

Malorie

By

Read By

Josh Malerman

Katherine Mangold

Just as good as the first.

Mordacious

By

Read By

Sarah Lyons Fleming

Luke Daniels, Thérèse Plummer

Post apocalyptic perfection: The Walking Dead, as reimagined by Shonda Rhimes.

My Dead World

By

Read By

Jacqueline Druga

Vanessa Johansson

A Fantastic Find For A Zombista

One Second After

By

Read By

William R. Forstchen

Joe Barrett

An Entertaining Warning

Peripeteia

By

Read By

Sarah Lyons Fleming

Thérèse Plummer, Luke Daniels

28 Days Later as written by Tina Fey

Plague of the Dead

By

Read By

Z. A. Recht

Oliver Wyman

Classic pandemic flick Outbreak meets TV’s Fear the Walking Dead.

Positive

By

Read By

David Wellington

Nick Podehl

If the TV show Prison Break was set twenty years after a zombie apocalypse.

Rainwalkers

By

Read By

Matt Ritter

Matt Ritter

Like Post Apocalyptic Adventure? Sinister Dystopias? A G Riddle? This is for you.

Red Clocks

By

Read By

Leni Zumas

Karissa Vacker, Erin Bennett

This is to dystopia what Station Eleven is to the post apocalyptic genre. Beautiful, Funny and Scarily Prescient. Inches From Reality

So Long, Lollipops

By

Read By

Sarah Lyons Fleming

Julia Whelan

The Walking Friends. See what I did there? Yes, I know it doesn't work.

Survivor Song

By

Read By

Paul Tremblay

Erin Bennett

Wistful Apocalypse With Echoes of Station Eleven

The Age of Miracles

By

Read By

Karen Thompson Walker

Laurence Bouvard

The Wonder Years: Post Apocalypse.

The Andromeda Strain

By

Read By

Michael Crichton

David Morse

A solid sci-fi pandemic thriller. Classic Crichton.

The Book of the Unnamed Midwife

By

Read By

Meg Elison

Angela Dawe

As powerful and Inspiring As The Handmaid's Tale

The Children of Men

By

Read By

P.D. James

Daniel Weyman

An Understated Yet Well Crafted Dystopia

The Darkest Minds

By

Read By

Alexandra Bracken

Amy McFadden

Great Beginning, Great End

The End of Men

By

Read By

Christina Sweeney-Baird

Cathleen McCarron, Aysha Kala, Denica Fairman, Penelope Rawlins, Debra Michaels, Julia Locascio, Sasha Alexis, Robert Bradley, Sara Lynam, Rebecca Perfect, William Hope

Beautiful, thoughtful, thought provoking. A redefinition of its genre.

The End of October: A Novel

By

Read By

Lawrence Wright

Mark Bramhall

Love pandemic thrillers? This hits all the right notes.

The First Days

By

Read By

Rhiannon Frater

Cassandra Campbell

Thelma and Louise Do The Apocalypse

The Handmaid's Tale

By

Read By

Margaret Atwood

Joanna David

Chilling, Terrifying, Brilliant. An instant classic.

The Hunger Games

By

Read By

Suzanne Collins

Carolyn McCormick

Love, love, love.

The Institute

By

Read By

Stephen King

Santino Fontana

Peak Sci-Fi Escapism Albeit Too Long

The Last Day

By

Read By

Andrew Hunter Murray

Gemma Whelan

A Lee Child style thriller set in a Day After Tomorrow World.

The Remaining

By

Read By

D. J. Molles

Christian Rummel

Morningstar Strain Meets The Martian

The Snow

By

Read By

Flint Maxwell

Matt Godfrey

Chilling - Want To Listen On

The World Gives Way: A Novel

By

Read By

Marissa Levien

Christine Lakin

If Margaret Atwood and George Lucas had directed The Day After Tomorrow.

World Departed

By

Read By

Sarah Lyons Fleming

Roger Wayne, Teri Schnaubelt, Christian Barillas, Mia Gaskin

If Big Little Lies had zombies in it...

Year One

By

Read By

Nora Roberts

Julia Whelan

X-Men Meets Once Upon A Time

Zero Day Code

By

Read By

John Birmingham

Rupert Degas

So Real, So Smart, So Gripping

Zero Hour: Omnibus Edition

By

Read By

Eamon Ambrose

James Highfield

The lines between robots and humans blur in this fun post-apocalyptic thriller.