Books That Hit A Little Too Close To Home During The Pandemic

With a lot of questions about coronavirus and not many answers, it can be hard to stop your brain from spinning in your skull. There are many ways to feel like you're not alone: You can reach out to friends and family over FaceTime, watch soothing TV shows that distract you from your thoughts, or dive head-first into books filled with characters going through the exact same thing you are. Often worse.

While the world is scary, it's weirdly comforting to read stories about people in similar situations. There are books about pandemics, isolation, and the literal apocalypse. While I feel it's worth noting this isn't a zombie invasion that will destroy human life as we know it, it's kind of nice to read those stories to have a little bit of perspective.

Some of these books about isolation and pandemics were written long before 2020, and others eerily came out just as this virus was starting to spread IRL. Some books aren't about pandemics or the apocalypse at all, but speak to the couped-up, stir-crazy feelings we're all having as we social distance and wait for the storm to pass. And what better way to wait than kick back with a book? Hey — it's not the end of the world.

COVID-19 has been declared a global pandemic. Go to the CDC website for the latest information on symptoms, prevention, and other resources.

I Am Legend by Richard Matheson


The inspiration for the Will Smith movie, I Am Legend takes place in a post-apocalyptic 1954. Just swap "pandemic" for "zombies."

Available on Amazon.

My Year Of Rest & Relaxation by Ottessa Moshfegh


This book will resonate with everyone currently waiting out what feels like a never-ending quarantine. The protagonist of Ottessa Moshfegh's novel is attempting to sleep for one entire year, waking up only to go to her bodega downstairs. Sound familiar?

Available on Amazon.

Room by Emma Donoghue


This book was all I could think about as I attempted to pass the time inside my two-bedroom apartment. A mother and son live their days inside one single room, but the more you learn, the creepier things get.

Available on Amazon.

Severance by Ling Ma


As much a novel about society and the human condition as it is a pandemic, Severance explores just how long humans will hold onto normalcy even as the world crumbles around them.

Available on Amazon.

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel


This book follows a small troupe of actors and musicians as they attempt to keep art alive in a society that's been ravaged by disease. The book was published in 2014 but the Kinde edition is currently number one on Amazon for Action & Adventure Literary Fiction, which should give you an idea of where people's heads are at.

Available on Amazon.

The Companions by Katie Flynn


California is under quarantine in this novel by Katie Flynn that was published earlier this month — AKA, just as the coronavirus was picking up steam in the US. The Companions takes a turn for the Westworld, with humans uploading their consciousness into hosts in order to live beyond extinction.

Available on Amazon.

The Road by Cormac McCarthy


A father and son are survivors of the apocalypse in this Pulitzer Prize-winning novel. The pair journey to the coast in search of a better future, knowing full well nothing may be waiting for them.

Available on Amazon.

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Books That Hit A Little Too Close To Home During The Pandemic Books That Hit A Little Too Close To Home During The Pandemic Reviewed by streakoggi on March 18, 2020 Rating: 5
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