Somehow the Science Fiction genre is even more filled with books centred around the Apocalypse than last week. But there are plenty of other niches and trends to keep the analysis interesting.
Yellowstone: Hellfire, by Bobby Akart, is a disaster survival novel based around the idea of the volcano that makes up the Yellowstone Park erupting and bringing disaster and death to the world on a massive scale. This follows the trend of natural disasters being favoured for harbingers of the apocalypse. Meanwhile, also favoured are books that focus on a human based apocalypse, such as n many of the A. G. Riddle books on the list, or in the ongoing trend of disaster novels using EMPs. However, no matter how it happens, Apocalypse Novels tend to follow a few lines. Generally the reader follows a single person or a small group on their trek through the dangerous wilderness that was once a civilised world, it is generally set in the USA, there are villains who have taken the chance to take control over the world. The main characters are usually looking for safety, family, or something that solves an ongoing problem or mystery. There tends to be quite a lot of violence.
These books end to be quite similar to the other trend on the charts this week, that of LitRPG novels. These books are generally set in a video game-like world, where magic and monsters are around every corner and people are part of gaming class systems and learn from skill trees. Often the books in this genre focus either on the Heroes of the world, who are normally outsiders from the “Real World” and who know it is a game, or on NPCs (Non-Player Characters) who may not know their world is a game. Thanks to the narrative structures of most games involving quests and a mission to save the world, these too tend to feature these kind of story lines. Interestingly, as well as the games featuring a fight to stop the end of the world, the Real World in the game has often also featured an apocalypse, which is used as a means to inject people into game worlds.
This week has not seen too many books set in space, Space Opera and Military Science Fiction are therefore far less populous than might be expected. Even those books that do take place in far off corners of the universe, tend to be set on a single planet and don’t feature much planet hopping. There are plenty of Classic Science Fiction books on the chart this week, George Orwell, Margaret Atwood, and Robert A. Heinlein are all featured, showing once again that Science Fiction is a genre with a long memory.
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