This is so not my typical reading fare - and apparently, this is not a "typical" post-apocalypse science fiction novel either. But I was fascinated. The story takes place after a flu epidemic that kills 90% of the world's population, and follows the Traveling Symphony, a group of musicians and actors who travel in a horse-drawn caravan performing music and Shakespeare plays "because survival is insufficient." A very well-written finalist for the 2014 National Book Award, and I found it, of all things, somewhat hopeful. (Mari)
Station Eleven by Emily MandelPublication Date: 2011.