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18 Best Books Like The Hunger Games and Divergent

Last Updated on November 26, 2023 by Louisa

If you’re a fan of dystopian novels like The Hunger Games and Divergent, you must be itching to find another science fiction novel that will fill the void.

Both The Hunger Games and Divergent are set in a futuristic world where society is divided by class.

On top of this, there is a battle looming and plans to overthrow the regime that holds society to its knees.

If you love the thought-provoking, gripping and enticing concepts that these novels have, then you’re going to love these books like The Hunger Games and Divergent.

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Summary of The Hunger Games and Divergent (No spoilers!)

The Hunger Games

The Hunger Games is a dystopian trilogy set in a world where society is divided by class. Each class lives in a district, numbered 1-12.

The elite class, is the lowest numbers (1-2) and the poorest class is the higher number (12). Each class lives and works to serve The Capitol.

Each year, the Capitol holds an event called The Hunger Games. Where one boy and one girl from each district, battle in an arena to the death. The victor wins enough food for their family for a lifetime, as well as earning fame in The Capitol

Katniss Everdeen is from District 12 and this year’s victor. In order to stay alive, she enters a fake relationship with her male tribute, Peeta Melark.

But as they enter the games, they realize the true enemy is not the other tributes, but the ones who put them there in the first place.


Divergent is another dystopian novel about a class-divided society – or in this case, five factions. When each person enters adulthood, they have to decide which faction they want to belong to for life.

Tris Prior chooses Dauntless, a faction that chooses bravery. However, when her initiation comes she finds out she’s a Divergent which means she can’t belong to one clan.

Unable to belong to one faction, she must conceal her true status. Meanwhile, a war is looming which threatens her whole life and everyone she loves.

Related Reading: The Best Quotes from The Hunger Games

Sci-Fi Books Similar to The Hunger Games and Divergent

So, you loved the action-packed, tension-filled scenes of The Hunger Games and the incredible ending of the sci-fi Divergent series. It’s left you wanting more.

Well, luckily for you, we’ve crafted the ultimate five-book list of Sci-Fi books similar to The Hunger Games and Divergent.

1. Gregor the Overlander – Suzanne Collins

Kicking our list off is the very same author of the bestselling The Hunger Games series Suzanne Collins, with her enthralling adventure book Gregor the Overlander.

After falling through a grate on the laundry room floor, Gregor and his little sister Boots fall into another world, the Underland.

Sharing this new environment with huge critters like that of giant cockroaches, giant bats, and giant spiders, the world is on the cusp of war and it’s up to eleven-year-old Gregor to put an end to the conflict.

In her debut novel, Collins demonstrated her abilities as an incredible writer for the young adult genre which set her up perfectly for the more well-known Hunger Games series. 

2. The 5th Wave – Rick Yancey

Described as “a modern sci-fi masterpiece”, Rick Yancey’s The 5th Wave is not to be missed.

Completely overrun by an extraterrestrial evil that can only be described as ‘human’ aliens, multiple ‘waves’ take turns in decimating Earth.

After the first wave, darkness dominates the landscape and after the second wave, the only ones left standing are the lucky ones.

At the beginning of the fifth wave, Cassie is determined to hunt for her brother, who’s gone missing.

Sticking together in the dark, desolate new world, Cassie befriends Evan and they set out on a gripping, life-or-death mission to be reunited with Cassie’s brother.

This book is SO entertaining, I guarantee you simply won’t be able to put the book down. 

3. Under the Never Sky – Veronica Rossi

Veronica Rossi’s richly detailed style of writing completely immerses you in the dystopian world she creates and to say you become emotionally dependent on the interesting characters is an understatement.

Starting in Reverie, the name of a huge dome-encased city that’s shielded from savages and powerful storms, we follow Aria as she heads out into the outer wasteland, knowing her chances of survival are slim.

Meeting Perry, a savage, she knows that sticking with him is the key to her survival.

Told in an intriguingly alternate style, Under the Never Sky is a refreshingly original addition to the young adult dystopian genre and is a perfect novel like The Hunger Games and Divergent.

4. The Knife of Never Letting Go – Patrick Ness

Patrick Ness is an outstanding writer, perfectly demonstrated in the first of his Chaos Walking trilogy.

The settlers of a town become infected with a gruesome germ only known as Noise. Having completely wiped out all of the females in the town, rather intriguingly, it’s also left the men being able to hear each other’s thoughts.

Todd, the main character, is quite literally the only boy in a town of men, and just as he’s forging his path to manhood, he knows the town and its residents are keeping something from him.

Something that forces Todd to flee with only his dog in tow. Crafting a compelling and fascinating story, Ness rounds off the novel with an insane cliffhanger that will leave you scrambling for the next installment.

5. Hyperion – Dan Simmons

Without a doubt, one of the all-time sci-fi greats is Dan Simmons’ Hyperion.

Simmons has forged an insanely detailed and complex world and its inhabitants are both complex and easy to get to know.

What’s fascinating about Hyperion is how it’s effectively a multitude of stories in one, making it appealing even to those that can’t stand an insanely lengthy, novel riddled with ultra-complex science-y jargon.

It breaks it up and gives you a chance to get to know the incredible characters you encounter along the book’s journey. If you want more books like The Hunger Games and Divergent, we continue on with our list below. 

Related Reading: Books like The Outsiders...

Young Adult Books Like The Hunger Games and Divergent

If you’re a fan of the relatively easy-to-read style of Young Adult books, then this next list of five YA novels like The Hunger Games and Divergent might just be for you.

Perhaps you enjoy the usual presence of an adolescent protagonist? If so, read on.

6. Scythe – Neal Shusterman

In a futuristic, dystopian world, humans have completely conquered death. As a consequence, Scythes are elected to effectively cull the population and keep the numbers in check.

The two main protagonists Rowan and Citra have been chosen to become an apprentice to a Scythe with the caveat being only one of them can become a fully-fledged Scythe.

Battling it out between each other to come out on top and join the ranks of the Scythes, Shusterman tackles the taboo of death head-on with an original concept that’s beautifully written. 

Scythe was an Honor Book for the 2017 Michael L. Printz Award for teenage novels.

7. #MurderTrending – Gretchen McNeil

Different from others on the list, #MurderTrending is a YA dystopian thriller that’ll leave you with your mouth wide open.

After a radical overhaul of the prison system, an App called Postman turns death row into what is effectively a bloody, gruesome version of a reality TV show.

Executions are broadcast live on the Postman app which leads to certain executioners gathering a cult-like following.

It’s not all beheadings and electric chairs though as the story follows Dee, an inmate convicted of killing her step-sister.

#MurderTrending is a fast-paced, fun read that keeps you second-guessing throughout. 

8. Legend – Marie Lu

For those looking for books like Divergent, then you need to check out Legend by Marie Lu.

The Republic. A futuristic, barren, dystopian land that was formerly the Western United States.

Amidst a lengthy war with its rival neighbors, June is a young 15-year-old being primed for military success in the Republic.

Born to an extremely wealthy family, everything is being done to ensure June reaches the heights of her parents.

However, that’s soon thrown into jeopardy as she crosses paths with Day, the Republic’s most wanted criminal, born into a life of poverty.

Shortly after, June’s brother Metias is brutally murdered, naturally leaving Day as the prime suspect. What’s uncovered next, will shock the Republic and the people to its core. 

9. Matched – Ally Condie

Grabbing your attention from the first page, Matched is a fascinating insight into a ‘perfect’ world. In a very strict, tightly controlled society, young people are matched with their partners at age 17.

They do not choose whom they love, government officials choose. Even down to the number of children, they’ll have.

Falling in love with another boy than the one chosen for her, Cassia begins bending the strictly enforced rules with drastic consequences.

Matched is a fabulous YA dystopian romance book that is simple in its story but for good reason, focusing on the complex love triangle that forms. 

10. The 100 – Kass Morgan

You might have heard of the television series, but have you heard of the book? The 100 is set on a dystopian planet Earth, where no human has lived for centuries after an all-out nuclear war.

After living high above the radioactive surface, the time has come to recolonize the planet.

Those tasked with the challenge? 100 young adults, all to have been deemed expendable by society.

With a four-split, point-of-view story, we follow Wells, Bellamy, Clarke, and Glass as they attempt to survive on Earth with only themselves as company. If you liked The Hunger Games and Divergent, you will love this one.

Related Reading: Books like I Am Number Four

Dystopian Books Like The Hunger Games and Divergent

There’s just something so special about the atmosphere a dystopian novel creates. Its extra-terrestrial, futuristic aura keeps you glued to the pages, turning each one at pace.

If you liked The Hunger Games and Divergent, here are five more amazing books to satisfy your dystopian cravings. 

11. The Maze Runner – James Dashner

If you like your Dystopian books to be thrilling, then The Maze Runner by James Dashner might just be exactly what you’re looking for.

Thomas, a charming yet seemingly quite reckless boy, wakes up in an elevator with absolutely zero memory other than knowing his name.

Abruptly, the elevator doors open and Thomas finds himself in the Glade – a walled area at the center of an incredibly huge stone maze hundreds of feet in height.

What’s inside the maze with Thomas and the other ‘inmates’ is horrifying and it’s up to Thomas to try to find a way out.

Certainly, a novel that keeps you on the edge of your seat, Dashner does a great job of keeping things interesting and fast-paced. If you’ve read The Maze Runner already, then click here to see some similar books.

12. Battle Royale – Koushun Takami

The Battle Royale theme was thrust into the spotlight a few years ago following the surging popularity of the video game Fortnite which had players of all ages battling it out to be the last one standing on a deserted island.

But many people aren’t aware that Battle Royale was a novel written by Japanese author Koushun Takami back in 1996.

It follows a class of high school kids who venture on a field trip that goes wrong when they are forced to turn against each other in a bloody battle to the death. Think Lord of the Flies, but more gruesome.

It’s also up for debate whether Battle Royale served as inspiration for Suzanne Collins’ iconic The Hunger Games series.

All we know is that Battle Royale is a jaw-droppingly incredible read that’s sure to leave you with your heart pounding. 

13. The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood

Margaret Atwood certainly has a way with words. The veteran author carves out a dystopian world in what can only be described as a woman’s worst nightmare.

Numerous environmental disasters led to the Second American Civil War; consequently, the Republic of Gilead has risen to rule.

Enforcing strict totalitarian rules, Gilead’s leaders enslaved all fertile women, and banned them from reading and their only use is to reproduce.

The Handmaid’s Tale is such a powerful read, and for certain, a real eye-opener as to what a dystopian novel can be. 

14. Red Rising – Pierce Brown

Red Rising is the epic tale of life on the dusty, dystopian terraformed planet of Mars and how the human race has been split into a color-based class system.

Golds are the highest in society after being genetically engineered, and on the other end of the spectrum are the Reds, living in squalid conditions and only have hard, manual labor for work.

The story follows Darrow, a hard-working miner believing his laborious work is paving the way for future generations to thrive on Mars.

The only issue is, that life is already thriving on Mars having settled there generations ago. The first book in the Red Rising series, Pierce Brown’s written a fantastic debut novel and it’s sure to entertain until the very last page. 

Related Reading: Books Similar to Red Rising

15. Nil – Lynne Matson

Rounding up our list of books similar to The Hunger Games and Divergent is one of the lesser known.

Set on a deserted tropical island called Nil, a group of teens has exactly 365 days to escape. Or they will die.

After waking up naked in a field, Charley doesn’t know where she is, or the rules of the island and is all alone.

Until she meets Thad, the beautiful leader of the other teens, also stuck on the island that she soon falls head over heels for.

Time’s running out for Thad, so Charley and the rest of the clan race against time to beat the demons of the island, in action-packed scenes that are vaguely reminiscent of the hit TV show Lost

16. Red Queen – Victoria Aveyard

Set in a world divided by two classes, Victoria Aveyard’s New York Times bestselling novel Red Queen follows 17-year-old Mare Barrow, who underestimates her potential until it manifests in the form of a dangerous power which threatens to destroy the social equilibrium.

In an attempt to keep Mare’s extraordinary abilities hidden, the Silvers declare her a long-lost Silver princess and arrange her engagement to a Silver prince.

Refusing to accept this destiny, Mare chooses to pledge herself to the Red Guard — a militant resistance group fighting for justice.

Caught between two kings, two sides, and a battle looming on the horizon, Mare must decide which side she’ll take in this riveting tale of identity and loyalty.

Will she choose justice or surrender to her fate? Follow Mare on this thrilling journey through love and war as she finds out what it takes for freedom!

Related Reading: Best Books Like Red Queen

17. Delirium – Lauren Oliver

Set in Portland, Delirium by Lauren Oliver is a thrilling young adult dystopian novel that speaks to those who enjoyed books like Divergent and Hunger Games.

Lena is approaching her eighteenth birthday, the age when everyone must take a cure for love or succumb to death. Witnessing love destroy her own mother has made Lena willing to do whatever it takes to ensure her own safety.

But when she meets Alex from the wilds – an area where people choose not to take the cure – Lena’s beliefs are tested.

Can two people truly find each other amidst a society so inclined against it? Join Lena in this captivating story as she discovers if love really can overcome all odds.

18. Uglies Scott Westerfeld

Uglies is the debut novel by New York Times bestselling author, Scott Westerfeld that is expected to become a motion picture on Netflix!

The series follows a young girl, Tally, who is excited to turn 16. When she’s sixteen, she’ll have an operation to turn her from an ugly into a pretty.

When she’s a pretty, she will be allowed to live in high society where her job is to have fun.

But her new friend Shay isn’t sure she wants to become a pretty, and so she runs away.

Soon, Tally learns the truth about the pretty world and realizes, it’s not always pretty to be pretty.

Related Reading: Books like The Giver

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Final Word on Best Books Like The Hunger Games and Divergent

So, there you have it, a complete list of the best books to read if you like The Hunger Games and Divergent that you’ll find hard to put down.

From the red, barren lands of Mars to deserted tropical islands, and everything in between, there’s surely a book for everyone on the list.

If you want more books like The Hunger Games and Divergent, send them in and I’ll keep this page updated. 

Headshot of Louisa

About Louisa Smith

Editor/Founder - Epic Book Society

Louisa is the Founder, Editor, and Head Honcho of Epic Book Society. She was born and raised in the United Kingdom and graduated from the University for the Creative Arts with a degree in Journalism. Louisa began her writing career at the age of 7 when her poetry was published in an anthology of poems to celebrate the Queen's Jubilee. Upon graduating university, she spent several years working as a journalist writing about books before transitioning to become a Primary School Teacher. Louisa loves all genres of books, but her favorites are Sci-Fi, Romance, Fantasy, and Young Adult Fiction. Read more Louisa's story here.

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