Best Survival Books – Book Reviews, Comparison and Advice

Jeremy Bowyer
Written By Jeremy Bowyer

Jeremy Bower is a generational survivalist and expert outdoorsman.

 “How am I going to survive outside by myself? I have never even been camping…Okay, I went camping when I was like 4, since then I’ve always lived in the city, surrounded by comfort and ease.” Luckily for you, all of us, or okay, most of us, were at the stage you are at right now. And there were times when there was no Internet and you couldn’t just Google all the information you needed.

No, you had to go to the library, look up any old-school survival encyclopedia, and read them for hours while trying to imagine doing. the action itself.


We’re not gonna lie, the best tool for surviving on your own is experience. However, in order to have experience, you have to go through an experience, and even though that sounds pretty obvious, duh, we often seem to forget it. If you had lived your whole life in the forest or the jungle, you would know how to protect yourself and get anything you need to survive healthily.

Now, imagine the situation where you have to survive in the city, and you’re lacking all the usual comforts, it would be a bit of a nightmare unless you’re fearless and ready for it all.

But let’s be honest, right now, we don’t have a job to imagine, we already do it most of the time, our job today is to prepare. And the synonym for preparedness is definitely knowledge – knowing how to cope with every situation life throws at you, including outdoor survival. So even though we love the internet, we have prepared for you the best tools to acquire such knowledge – survival books. Afterward, just pack your survival stuff and go outdoors, go practice!

After so many years of survival and daily learning of new tricks, we have found a set of ten survival books you can choose from to be your guide. So, let’s begin.

1. SAS Survival Handbook


This is the modern survival encyclopedia, filled with all kinds of tested and proven information surrounding survival anywhere. Let’s talk about its contents. It is a pretty thick book, so consider that if you’re thinking about adding it to your survival gear. The book has courses that would teach you how to:

  • Be Prepared – The Knowledge of Basic Survival Skills and the Basic Necessities For an Emergency Situation Preparation
  • Make Camp – Everything You Need To Know About Making an Outdoor Camp
  • Stay Fed – What You Can Eat, How You Can Cook It, What To Avoid, Where You Can Find It
  • Stay Safe – First Aid Emergency Knowledge For Any Climate and Dealing With Injuries Outdoors
  • Cope With Natural Disasters – An Earthquake, Tornado, Flood, Whatever You Can Think Of – It’s Covered
  • Defend Yourself – Mini-Course On Self-Defense and Appropriate Techniques
  • Secure Your Home – How Not To Be a Victim of Theft and Break-Ins
  • Understand the Climate – Knowing About the Climate and Geographic Locations Can Save Your Life
  • Survive In The City – A Chapter On Urban Survival Makes It Exceptional
  • Expert Instructions – Created By Experts for Future Experts

2. Build The Perfect Bugout


This book will teach you everything you need to know about bugging out and how to deal with leaving your home for an indefinite amount of time. It teaches you how to meet the core survival skills when outside your comfort zone: Water, Food, Shelter, and Fire. It is a small book, which would be useful in a bug-out situation and would fit great in even the smallest gear. It includes the following mini-courses:

  • Primitive Tools – How to survive without expert gear and natural resources around you. Learning the craft of adapting materials for needed use
  • Techniques – A set of illustrations that teach you different techniques you might need on the way, such as knot-tying, shelter construction, fire building, and setting snares and traps
  • Advanced Knowledge – Helping yourself and yourself in an emergency requires knowledge such as First Aid to assist you on the way to ultimate safety

3. Prepper’s Long-Term Survival Guide


Food, Shelter, Security, Off-the-Grid Power, and More Life-Saving Strategies for Self-Sufficient Living Published in 2020, it’s probably the most recent survival book that includes a variety of efficient knowledge for outdoor survival. The book covers a range of different survival points in 200 pages of conventional writing which is great for anyone who prefers a modern-day outlook.

Unlike other books, it doesn’t include too many pictures and examples of techniques. However, it has all the information one must know. Imagine taking a short survival course, which teaches you everything you must know to be prepared – that’s the book for this. It covers the following topics:

  • Water – How Do You Get Water, How Do You Make It Drinkable, How Do You Store It – The Answers Are Inside This Book.
  • Food – Teaches You About the Yes and No of Outdoor Foods and How To Consume It Safely.
  • Fire – Stay Warm, Cook, Disinfect – Learn How to Use Fire to Your Advantage.
  • Shelter – What is The Best Place To Build? How Do You Build a Shelter? What Do You Need To Build a Shelter?
  • Medications – Natural and Pre-Prepared Medications That Could Save Your Life, You Should Know About Them.
  • Defense – Defending Yourself and Your Family in Unexpected Occurrences is a Vital Part of Your Learning.

4. Survival Hacks


This book is such a fantastic choice! Not only does it give you excellent knowledge, but it also helps you upgrade the skills you have in an easy way! What the writer does is gives you a set of practical, easy-to-use tips and tricks that teach you how to transform everyday items into survival gear.

So, if living in the wilderness and surviving on your own seems like an impossible job, this book gives you a step-by-step guide. That way, you can take your time and not worry about a lack of knowledge that may exist. The book isn’t too heavy, that way, you can always take it along on the journey. Here is a list of the hacks included in this book:

  • Clothing Hacks
  • Footwear Hacks
  • Canopy Hacks
  • Shelter and Heating Hacks
  • Making the Most of Matches and Disposable Lighters Hacks
  • Stove and Cooking Hacks
  • First-Aid Hacks
  • Lighting Hacks

5. Tiny Survival Guide 


The Tiny Survival Guide is the ultimate guide to help you survive in almost any type of situation at any time. It is so tiny it can fit inside your pocket! How cool is that? Imagine having a tool you can carry with you anywhere and having the peace of mind that you would be able to cope if anything occurs.

Surely, the tiny guide is filled with expert illustrations, survival tips, gear checklists, and essential tactics for survivalists. The little book is made of high-quality, water-resistant material, so it’s a survivalist itself! If you don’t believe it could assist you in any environment, here are several situations it’s useful for:

  • Hiking, Camping, and Hunting
  • Urban Disasters, Pandemics, Outbreaks, Civil Unrest, and Riots
  • Home Invasion and Surprise Attacks
  • Natural Disasters – Flood, Hurricane, Earthquake, Storm
  • Mass Destruction – Nuclear, Biological, or Chemical Attacks
  • Abduction, Hostage, and Terror Threats
  • Physical Threats

6. Build the Perfect Bug Out Vehicle


The Disaster Survival Vehicle Guide Have you ever dreamed of having that level of safety where if an emergency occurs, you can jump in a car, which is equipped with everything you need to survive? Well, we’re here to tell you that you can achieve that if you want to.

If you are serious about survival and want to be prepared for anything, there is a book that guides you on how to create the perfect survival vehicle and avoid disasters. It’s a book with 232 pages of quality information that helps you create this safety measure without spending a fortune. Let’s take a look into the contents of the book itself:

  • ATV Disaster Vehicle – How to upgrade your ATV to be your emergency vehicle.
  • Trailer Disaster Vehicle – Having a little home on the road and the supplies it carries.
  • Boat Disaster Vehicle – Do you want to get off the road? Survive by living on a boat.
  • SUV/Car Disaster Vehicle – Everything you must stock your car with to survive.
  • Bicycle Disaster Vehicle – Don’t have a car? That’s fine – you can bug out with a bicycle!

7. Natural Born Heroes


Now, this is a kind of book that teaches you how to master your own body and mind for ultimate survival. Many people don’t know how capable and strong a human body is, as they don’t live a healthy lifestyle and simply don’t pay attention. However, once you start feeding your body all the right types of nutrition, you begin to realize you are more capable than you thought.

This book is extremely motivational as it follows the true story of an individual that found the hero in himself through the hardships of life. It shares the idea that heroism is a skill set and that every person out there is a hero. Should you be able to understand your body, it would be that much easier to give it everything it needs to survive without unnecessary stress. The book teaches techniques on:

  • Physical Endurance
  • Sustenance
  • Natural Movement
  • Nutrition

8. Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe


From the same writer as the previous book, this one looks at the strengths of the human body and especially its ability to excel in running. We believe that survival and preparedness are extremely important; however, we also believe that you will never be prepared unless you know your body. If you are used to a lifestyle that doesn’t really focus on the importance of nutrition, this book could change your mindset.

Many people dream about having the power of gods; however, these people haven’t even understood the power of their own bodies. This author looks through many various wells of information and delivers facts and true stories to show humans their physical potential. If you are to survive in nature, you will have to have the physical ability to take care of yourself. That is why we decided to put this book on our best survival books list. It is, after all, one of the best. And we hope it motivates you to go to the next level.

9. The Survival Medicine Handbook


Once you’re in the outdoors and an emergency occurs, you realize, in the heat of the moment, that there is a possibility you will have to deal with this alone. You can never really predict the time and place of an emergency; therefore, you cannot hope for medical assistance on the way. You could be far off the tracks, and you might not be able to get any radio signal.

That’s why we think that it is extremely important to be prepared either with sufficient knowledge to help yourself and your family or carry a medicine book that wouldn’t overcomplicate things.

So, we chose The Survival Medicine Handbook as our best choice for a medical survival book. This is a huge 700-paged book that is made to help even the less prepared survivalist handle any type of situation. It has everything you need to know about injuries and illnesses and all the tools you can adapt for medical use in a range of situations:

  • Natural Remedies – Oils, Teas, Tinctures, and Salves
  • Modern Medicine Vs. Survival Medicine
  • Hygiene-Related Medical Issues
  • Mass Casualty Incidents
  • Infections and Food/Water-Related Diseases
  • Physical Blood Loss
  • Heat Stroke or Trench
  • Natural Disasters Preparedness
  • Allergic Reactions or Breathing Difficulties
  • Burn Injuries and Animal Bites
  • Fractures, Sprains, and Strains
  • Eye and Ear Infection
  • Sleep Deprivation

Frequently Asked Questions

What Do I Need To Consider When Choosing The Best Survival Books?

You need to think about your personal experience outdoors and think about your capability to handle difficult and urgent situations. If you aren’t used to problem-solving and haven’t got any experience surviving in the wilderness, you need to choose a book that gives you all the information to be fully prepared.

I Am Not Interested in Becoming a Survival Expert, I Simply Want To Be Prepared, Which Book Should I Go For?

Well, if you aren’t keen on learning everything there is to know about survival, and we don’t think anyone knows it all, make a list. The list should include all the things you would have an interest in learning so that you can then connect it to any of the books we offered. If you want no hassle and something simple, consider the Tiny Survival Guide, with its credit card size. That way, you can always have something in your pocket to help!

how to build a shelter

What Is The Most Important Thing About Surviving in The Wilderness?

That definitely has to be knowledge and, specifically – knowing your surroundings. If you know the area you live in, you can find food, shelter, and water without difficulty. That’s why we always advise our readers to get to know their surrounding nature. If the situation occurs, when they have to flee, they would have all the information they need for a peaceful bugout experience.

Can I Really Be Ultimately Prepared?

Definitely! That is why we wanted to share this list of books. Even one of these books would be able to give you enough information. However, the more knowledge you have, the more prepared you can be. It really is up to you and how far you wish to go. Final Words We know that in today’s society, books aren’t necessarily the go-to for knowledge and problem-solving. However, we are old school, and we have gathered most of our knowledge through books, that’s why we strongly advise reading.

book nature

Final Words

The books mentioned above are a set of tools that could help you in any type of situation, and let’s be honest, there is nothing wrong with being prepared. Furthermore, we have to talk about the benefits of books for the mind. If you are reading an article, it’s really not that different from reading a book. Books help you focus and keep your mind in shape, as your mind will be heavily used once you are in the wilderness on your own.

Therefore, you shouldn’t only train your body, you should also spend some time training your mind. And the books above give you a way of training your mind whilst learning a bunch of stuff that could come in handy at any point in your life. There are a couple of inspirational headlines up there, as it is never too late to get inspired.

Especially when it comes to survival, one needs to have efficient knowledge and a set of skills to assist on the way. We hope this article has been as useful for you reading it as it was fun for us writing it.

If you have any comments, or if you have read other motivational books or just want to share your knowledge about survival, feel free to drop a comment in the field below.