10 Action-Packed YA Dystopian Books


Looking for your next favorite dystopian series? Check out these YA novels:

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV. Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who lives alone with her mother and younger sister, regards it as a death sentence when she is forced to represent her district in the Games. But Katniss has been close to dead and survival, for her, is second nature. Without really meaning to, she becomes a contender. But if she is to win, she will have to start making choices that weigh survival against humanity and life against love.



Divergent by Veronica Roth

One choice can transform you. Beatrice Prior’s society is divided into five factions—Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). Beatrice must choose between staying with her Abnegation family and transferring factions. Her choice will shock her community and herself. But the newly christened Tris also has a secret, one she’s determined to keep hidden, because in this world, what makes you different makes you dangerous.


Golden by K.M. Robinson

Goldilocks wasn’t naive. She was sent on a mission and Dov Baer is her new target.

When the girl with the golden hair betrays everyone, not even she has hope of surviving.

The stories say that Goldilocks was a naïve girl who wandered into a house one day. Those stories were wrong. She was never naïve. It was all a perfectly executed plan to get her into the Baers’ group to destroy them.

Trained by her cousin, Lowell, and handler, Shadoe, Auluria’s mission is to destroy the Baers by getting close to the youngest brother, Dov, his brother and sister-in-law and the leaders of the Baers’ group. When she realizes Dov isn’t as evil as her cousin led her to believe, she must figure out how to play both sides or her deception will cause everyone in her world to burn.

If her allegiances are discovered, either side could destroy her…if the Society doesn’t get her first.



Branded by Abi Ketner and Missy Kalicicki

Fifty years ago The Commander came into power and murdered all who opposed him. In his warped mind, the seven deadly sins were the downfall of society. To punish the guilty, he created the Hole, a place where sinners are branded according to their sins. Sinners are forced to live a less than human existence in deplorable conditions, under the watchful eye of guards who are ready to kill anyone who steps out of line.Now, LUST wraps around my neck like thick, blue fingers, threatening to choke the life out of me. I’ve been accused of a crime I didn’t commit, and the Hole is my new home. Constant darkness. Brutal and savage violence. Excruciating pain. Every day is a fight for survival. But I won’t let them win. I will not die in the Hole. I am more than my brand. I’m a fighter. My name is Lexi Hamilton, and this is my story.


Jaded by K.M. Robinson

Her father failed in his mission to take control from the Commander, a defeat that has cost Jade her life. She will die as punishment. Now she belongs to the Commander’s son—as his wife. Knowing his intent is to quietly kill her in revenge, Jade’s every move is calculated to survive—until she learns her death ensures the safety of her father and her entire town.

Roan doesn’t want to kill Jade, but once his family isolates her from her father and community, his only choice is to go through with the plan. Jade doesn’t make it easy as she tries to sway him into falling for her. Each misstep makes him question his cause. Each moment makes every decision harder, but the Commander won’t allow him to fail.

One chooses life. One chooses death. In the midst of the chaos, only one will succeed.


Forget Tomorrow by Pintip Dunn

Imagine a world where your destiny has already been decided…by your future self.

It’s Callie’s seventeenth birthday and, like everyone else, she’s eagerly awaiting her vision—a memory sent back in time to sculpt each citizen into the person they’re meant to be. A world-class swimmer. A renowned scientist.

Or in Callie’s case, a criminal.

In her vision, she sees herself murdering her gifted younger sister. Before she can process what it means, Callie is arrested and placed in prison. The only person who can help is her childhood crush, Logan, a boy she hasn’t spoken to in five years.

Logan breaks her free, but can she trust him? He’s almost the same boy she remembers, but now he’s a whole lot hotter. And he’s got his own past to deal with. Callie’s falling for him, fast, but she soon learns he has secrets of his own. Secrets that mean they can never be together.

Now, Callie’s on the run not only from the government, but also from her fate. If she wants any hope of a future with Logan, she must first find a way to protect her sister from the biggest threat of all—herself.


There Once Were Stars by Melanie McFarlane

Peace. Love. Order. Dome.

That’s the motto that the Order has given the residents of Dome 1618 to live by. Natalia Greyes is a resident of Dome 1618, a covered city protected from the deadly radiation that has poisoned the world outside for four generations. Nat never questioned the Order, until one day she sees a stranger on the outside of her dome. Now Nat wants answers. What else might her government be hiding from the good and loyal people of Dome 1618?


Perfected by Kate Jarvik Birch

Perfection comes at a price.

As soon as the government passed legislation allowing humans to be genetically engineered and sold as pets, the rich and powerful rushed to own beautiful girls like Ella. Trained from birth to be graceful, demure, and above all, perfect, these “family companions” enter their masters’ homes prepared to live a life of idle luxury.

Ella is happy with her new role as playmate for a congressman’s bubbly young daughter, but she doesn’t expect Penn, the congressman’s handsome and rebellious son. He’s the only person who sees beyond the perfect exterior to the girl within. Falling for him goes against every rule she knows…and the freedom she finds with him is intoxicating.

But when Ella is kidnapped and thrust into the dark underworld lurking beneath her pampered life, she’s faced with an unthinkable choice. Because the only thing more dangerous than staying with Penn’s family is leaving…and if she’s unsuccessful, she’ll face a fate far worse than death.



Matched by Ally Condie

Cassia has always trusted the Society to make the right choices for her: what to read, what to watch, what to believe. So when Xander’s face appears on-screen at her Matching ceremony, Cassia knows with complete certainty that he is her ideal mate . . . until she sees Ky Markham’s face flash for an instant before the screen fades to black.

The Society tells her it’s a glitch, a rare malfunction, and that she should focus on the happy life she’s destined to lead with Xander. But Cassia can’t stop thinking about Ky, and as they slowly fall in love, Cassia begins to doubt the Society’s infallibility and is faced with an impossible choice: between Xander and Ky, between the only life she’s known and a path that no one else has dared to follow.



Along Came A Spider by K.M. Robinson

Little Hacker Muffet
sat on her tuffet
destroying her cords and Way.
Along came a hacker named Spider,
who sat down beside her
and frightened his opponent away.
When Fet, one of the most skilled hackers in the Legends, discovers her best friend and leader of her group has been abducted and held for ransom, she must escape unnoticed and find Peep before it’s too late.
When Spider, a new recruit training to join her hacker ring, slips out with her and claims to have a plan to save her friend, Fet is forced to bring him along. As she discovers he’s not who he claims to be, she faces grave danger and learns just how deadly a spider bite can be.



Do YOU have a favorite thrilling YA dystopian that we should know about? Hit the comments and drop us some book recs!

Stay inspired,

-K.M. Robinson

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