The Book Swede on Wastelands

Another new review of Wastelands today, this time from The Book Swede. He claims to be a bit of a newbie when it comes to short fiction, and I’m happy to say that Wastelands seems to have inspired him to try more:

For some reason, I’ve always shied away somewhat from short stories — perhaps I thought there just weren’t enough words to do any "proper" story justice, or that somehow I was being cheated out of a really good read … and as a result, this anthology is the first I’ve ever read. Perhaps I thought … well, whatever I thought, I was wrong. Very, very wrong. […] A very good anthology, and, for a short story newbie like me, a good taster of what it’s all about. A very high 9/10. [whole review]

Doomsday, a film by Neil Marshall

There’s a new post-apocalyptic film coming out this spring called Doomsday, by Neil Marshall, director of the pretty good horror flick The Descent. Go check out the trailer.

It looks pretty good. For about half of the trailer I was thinking "This could be the best post-apocalyptic movie ever," but my enthusiasm diminished somewhat when the biker-punk cannibals showed up. Still, I remain cautiously optimistic.

Learn More About Wastelands

Whether you’ve read Wastelands already, or are still trying to decide whether or not you’d like it, the book’s website has a wealth of information that should be of interest to you. For instance, you can read the header notes for all the stories and read excerpts for most of them. You can even read three stories (M. Rickert, Cory Doctorow, and Richard Kadrey) in their entirety. You can also read the book’s introduction. Here’s a handy linked list of the detail pages for each of the stories:

Additionally, there’s a bunch of information on the website that’s not available in the book. Click on the following links to learn more about selected authors in Wastelands. See what they had to say about their stories, read about their favorite examples of post-apocalyptic fiction, and find out why they find the sub-genre appealing.

Wastelands site update

Updated John Langan author page: Added essay by John Langan about the origin of the story

Wastelands on Hour of the Wolf

I appeared on Jim Freund’s radio show Hour of the Wolf on Saturday morning to promote Wastelands. If you’d like to listen to the show, the radio station, WBAI, has it up on their archives page. For a direct link (which will start the audio streaming), click here.

Bloggers review Wastelands

Daniel W. Powell, on his blog, The Byproduct, posted a nice review of Wastelands. Here’s a snippet:

I can’t recommend this anthology enough. It stands as a definitive collection in the sub-genre, and I have to say that Night Shade Books did an impressive job with the project. Editor John Joseph Adams has a nice eye for strong writing and clearly has read widely in the field. [whole review]

And the Books Anonymous blog had this to say:

I love a good tale of the apocalypse so this book was like a trip to Camden Park (before it became old, dangerous, and creepy). […] I can only give this collection 2 thumbs up because I only have 2 thumbs. [whole review]

Life After People documentary

The History Channel will soon be airing a new special called Life After People:

What would happen to planet earth if the human race were to suddenly disappear forever? Would ecosystems thrive? What remnants of our industrialized world would survive? What would crumble fastest? From the ruins of ancient civilizations to present day cities devastated by natural disasters, history gives us clues to these questions and many more in the visually stunning and thought-provoking new special LIFE AFTER PEOPLE, premiering Monday, January 21st, 2008 at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT on The History Channel®.

If you dig post-apocalyptic fiction (and if you’re reading this, you probably do), this should be right up your alley.

The Fix on Wastelands

The Fix has a great, very detailed review up of Wastelands. Here’s a snippet:

There’s a wry, fatalistic charm to Dale Bailey’s “The End of the World as We Know It,” an unusual and highly self-conscious tale of the apocalypse. It begins with a brief description of the Bubonic plague, and interspersed throughout the subsequent narrative are a number of digressions reflecting on the conventions of the “end-of’the-world” story to which, as Bailey observes, his protagonist fails to conform. Alongside these dissections of the mechanics of the sub-genre, Bailey also cites a number of real life apocalypses—Pompeii, Krakatoa, 9/11, the extinction event that did in the dinosaurs, the 1755 Lisbon Earthquake, the Holocaust, Cambodia, Rwanda. One event he mentions—the death of Elvis Presley—hints at the real point of the story, which is that for both victims and survivors, the apocalypse is largely a personal event. [whole review]

It’s really a well-crafted review, and considering it’s written by several different reviewers, the overall result is remarkably cohesive.

Adventures in Reading on Wastelands

Joe Sherry, over at Adventures in Reading, has posted his review of Wastelands. Here’s a snippet:

The bottom line is that collectively the stories John Joseph Adams has put together here in Wastelands shows off the range of the post-apocalyptic sub-genre of fiction. Wastelands is an excellent anthology of short fiction and one that would easily fit on any collector’s shelves. [whole review]

Interview at The Fix

Sarah Jackson of The Fix did an interview with me recently which is now available for your reading pleasure. Here’s a snippet:

How do you imagine you would deal with being a survivor in a post-apocalyptic wasteland?

I took one of those online tests once that gauged how well you’d do in such a situation, and I fared rather poorly, which I think was a pretty accurate assessment of my chances. I object to its analysis that I had zero nature skills, however. I mean, I’m a total city boy, and much prefer to stay inside most of the time, but I’m not a moron. That said, there is an entirely good chance I’d get mauled by a wild animal if I were stuck on my own after an apocalypse.

The good news is that I know some people who probably would do rather well, and might be inclined to help me out. And I have read a lot of post-apocalyptic fiction, after all, so surely I’ll think of something when the mutants come looking for me.

Read the whole interview.

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