#LoveOzYA reads that confront the issue of climate change and environmental destruction

By Jasmin McGaughey

The climate crisis is having an impact across Australia and across the world. We are currently seeing these impacts interwoven through many aspects of our lives.

Young people have been known to march and fight for our climate – for our future. In these fictional #LoveOzYa books, readers can continue to connect to this global issue and hopefully find hope in knowing they aren’t alone!

Future Girl by Asphyxia

In a dystopian future Australia, a corporation has cured cancer, the common cold, and other ailments. They manufacture ‘food’, adding this medicine to protect Australians.

Piper’s mum was one of the lead scientists on the project, but when she loses her job, they find themselves struggling to get enough to eat. Piper, who is deaf, meets Marley, a CODA (Child of a Deaf Adult), and enters a world where deafness is something to be celebrated instead of hidden, and where food is grown instead of delivered in a truck. But can they be together or are their worlds too far apart?

This is a beautiful, #OwnVoices illustrated story that celebrates difference at the same time it poses important ethical questions about the impact of climate change on food production.

The End of the World is Bigger than Love by Davina Bell

Identical twin sisters Summer and Winter live alone on a remote island, sheltered from a destroyed world. They survive on rations stockpiled by their father and spend their days deep in their mother’s collection of classic literature – until a mysterious stranger upends their carefully constructed reality.

At first, Edward is a welcome distraction. But who is he really, and why has he come? As love blooms and the world stops spinning, the secrets of the girls’ past begin to unravel and escape is the only option.

A sumptuously written novel of love and grief; of sisterly affection and the ultimate sacrifice; of technological progress and climate catastrophe; of an enigmatic bear and a talking whale – The End of the World Is Bigger than Love is unlike anything you’ve read before.

This One is Ours by Kate O’Donnell

Sixteen-year-old Sofie is a dreamer, an artist and a romantic. So when she goes on exchange to Paris, she is expecting magnificent adventures of the heart and mind. Yet France isn’t what she imagined. It’s cold and grey, and she finds speaking another language exhausting. Sofie’s more homesick than lovesick.

But then her host sister, Delphine, and fellow artist Olivier show her a different side of Paris, and Sofie starts to question her ideas of art, beauty and meaning. Of everything. There’s truth in what her best friend, Crow, has been saying all along: the world is in crisis and people need to take notice.

But what can one girl do? Will Sofie be able to find the courage to fight for change?

Obernewtyn Chronicles by Isobelle Carmody

In a world struggling back from the brink of apocalypse, life is harsh. But for Elspeth Gordie, born with enhanced mental abilities that would see her sterilised or burned if discovered, it is also dangerous.

There is only survival by secrecy, and so she determines never to use her forbidden powers. But it is as if they have their own imperative, and their use inevitably brings her to the attention of the totalitarian Council that rules the Land. . .

Carmody started this seven-part series when she was a teenager and it is one of the classics of Australian YA fantasy.

Hive by A.J. Betts

Hayley tends to her bees and follows the rules in the only world she has ever known.

Until she witnesses the impossible: a drip from the ceiling.

A drip? It doesn’t make sense.

Yet she hears it, catches it. Tastes it.

Curiosity is a hook.

What starts as a drip leads to a lie, a death, a boy, a beast, and too many awful questions.

What climate fiction are you reading or writing?




Amra Pajalic

The Interrogation of Ashala Wolf by Amber Kwaymullina should be added to the list.

June 4, 2021 at 11:20 am

Marion Silk

Grimsdon series by Deborah Abela would be another good addition

June 4, 2021 at 5:58 pm


Jilda’s Ark is about sea-level rise and environmental refugees.

June 10, 2021 at 2:45 pm

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