9 Must-Read Books If You Like 'Lord of the Flies'

Silhouette of a child standing in a field against a setting sun.


A plane crashes, leaving a group of schoolboys stranded on a deserted island. The realities of human behavior and interactions become apparent as the boys struggle to survive. Dark, murderous, and bloody propensities shine through.

Books Like 'Lord of the Flies'

Controversial and banned, "Lord of the Flies" is also recognized as one of the most important novels of the 20th century. If you liked this book, give one (or more) of the following a read.

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A Clockwork Orange

"A Clockwork Orange" book cover art.

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"A Clockwork Orange" is a famous (and controversial) book by Anthony Burgess. This dystopian novel was published in 1962. The two books represent a particularly tragic, and English, perspective on youth in the 20th century. Burgess's narrative style is unique and challenging, but the themes are similar to ​"Lord of the Flies."

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Brave New World

"Brave New World" book cover art.

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In a futuristic society based on pleasure without moral repercussions, Aldous Huxley places a few oddball characters to stir up the plot. With eugenics at its core, this novel is a match to "Lord of the Flies" as a study into the concept of survival of the fittest.

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Fahrenheit 451

"Fahrenheit 451" book cover art.

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"Fahrenheit 451" is perhaps Bradbury's crowning achievement. It tells of the "Firemen" in a dystopian future where books are outlawed because they encourage people to think — and to therefore question authority. 

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The Hunger Games

"The Hunger Games" book cover art.

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"The Hunger Games" is the first book in the same-titled trilogy by Suzanne Collins. In the post-apocalyptic United States, children from 12 districts are collected each year and forced to fight to the death. If you're intrigued by politics and human nature, this book and "Lord of the Flies" have much to offer.

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Battle Royale

"Battle Royale" novel cover art.

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Speaking of "The Hunger Games." If you enjoy books in this style, then one you don't want to miss is Koushun Takami's "Battle Royale." Every year, in the Republic of East Asia, one 3rd-year Junior High class made up of 15-year olds is selected at random to participate in a Battle Royale — an epic fight to the death, where the final student to survive is crowned the winner.

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One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest

"One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest" book cover.

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Ken Kesey’s 1962 American novel "One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest" is a haunting look at the polar natures of power and authority, madness and sanity. The book was published to critical acclaim and is unique in its ability to be both comic and tragic.

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Robinson Crusoe

"Robinson Crusoe" book cover art.

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The story of Alexander Selkirk, a Scottish sailor, inspired Daniel Defoe to create this novel about a man who is stranded on a deserted island. "Lord of the Flies" centers around a group of schoolboys, whereas Defoe's legendary book focuses on one isolated man. Even so, Defoe discusses some of the most base characteristics of humanity.

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To Kill a Mockingbird

Book cover of "To Kill a Mockingbird."

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Like "Lord of the Flies," Harper Lee's "To Kill a Mockingbird" explores the basics of human nature. Scout isn't on a deserted island, but she's growing up in a community built on hatred. At first glance, this may seem like a strange choice for those who enjoyed "Lord of the Flies." Certainly, "To Kill a Mockingbird" is not the same kind of dystopian environment. However, it is told through the eyes of a child narrator who begins to experience adult situations. Both are classics. 

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Nip the Buds, Shoot the Kids

"Nip the Buds, Shoot the Kids" book cover art.

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Kenzaburo Oe’s "Nip the Buds, Shoot the Kids" is the story of a group of teenage boys who are taken from their corrective center during wartime and brought to a village where they will do the farming and fielding. When a plague breaks out, the boys are barricaded inside the village until the outbreak has dissipated. In that time, the boys learn to fend for themselves — to hunt, cook, and even to play as they were never allowed to before.

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Lombardi, Esther. "9 Must-Read Books If You Like 'Lord of the Flies'." ThoughtCo, Sep. 2, 2021, thoughtco.com/must-read-books-lord-of-flies-740599. Lombardi, Esther. (2021, September 2). 9 Must-Read Books If You Like 'Lord of the Flies'. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/must-read-books-lord-of-flies-740599 Lombardi, Esther. "9 Must-Read Books If You Like 'Lord of the Flies'." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/must-read-books-lord-of-flies-740599 (accessed June 7, 2023).