REVIEW: “A classic” —PC Gamer

PC Gamer recommends reading WASTELANDS if you enjoyed Fallout 3: “A classic […] perfect for those moments when we want to take a trip to the end of the world.”

REVIEW: Some Fantastic

A new review of Wastelands just appeared in Some Fantastic. The reviewer, Matthew Appleton says all kinds of nice things about the stories in a very long and detailed review, and sums up: “Wastelands is an excellent anthology that belongs on the shelf of any SF fan, and not just fans of post-apocalyptic fiction. It’s hard to imagine a better way to spend $15.95 on a themed collection of short fiction.” [PDF]

It’s a really nice analysis of the stories he talks about in detail—well-worth a read whether you’ve already read Wastelands or not.

REVIEW: Roundup

The blog has a thoughtful, rave review of Wastelands: “Wastelands is the kind of book which will not allow you to work, sleep, socialize – barely eat – while it’s new and unbroken in your hands. Still, it would be a shame to dilute the stories through one hasty, over-zealous fit of reading. Wastelands is the book you read once straight through, enjoying the imagery, imagination and prose. Another, slower read-through is almost a must. There is a meaning (although, not always a lesson) to unravel in each of these stories, and it is up to the reader to figure it out for themselves.”

Matt Staggs talks about apocalyptic fiction and says some nice things about Wastelands: “This is pretty much the fiction anthology I’ve always looked for and never could find. It’s perfect, lots of great stuff, and I can’t praise Adams and Night Shade Books enough for bringing it to book shelves.”

Bibliophile Stalker reviews Wastelands: “John Joseph Adams assembles a wide variety of apocalypse-related fiction in Wastelands ... What you end up with is a diverse anthology covering topics like religion, war, and exploration while containing elements of horror, comedy, and even sense of wonder.”

During Worldcon in early August, myself, Walter Jon Williams (Implied Spaces), and Paolo Bacigalupi (Pump Six), went on a VIP tour of the NORAD facility at Cheyenne Mountain, which is known in SF circles for its relevance to the plot of the film WarGames and the television series Stargate SG-1. I wrote up a report about our trip to NORAD for SCI FI Wire.  Annalee Newitz was also on the trip, and she wrote up a report for

REVIEW: Bookgasm Looooooooooooves Wastelands

Bookgasm reviewer Ryun Patterson on Wastelands: "Few books have had the impact on me that WASTELANDS: STORIES OF THE APOCALYPSE did. … WASTELANDS is a great collection that gets my highest recommendation."

REVIEW: Roundup

Over at Religion Dispatches, Gabriel McKee has a thoughtful review of Wastelands. Here’s a snippet: “Editor John Joseph Adams has chosen stories that show so much variation, not just in setting but in tone. There are several elegiac tales here, to be sure, but there are just as many optimistic ones, and even one or two comedies. It’s far from a tedious series of stories about savage motorcycle gangs—there’s real diversity here, and you’re hard pressed to find two stories that are alike.

In other Wastelands news, there’s an interview with me up at Strange Horizons, in which I talk about the anthology, as well as other projects and other topics, including a bit about The Living Dead. There’s also a sneak-peek at the preliminary cover design–at least I hope it’s still preliminary…see if you can spot the typo. I’ve tweaked the cover to correct the error.

REVIEW: Two Takes on Wastelands

SF Site has an enthusiastic review of Wastelands: "Wastelands is a fine anthology: an educational introduction to the subgenre and a well-chosen jog of the memory for the more experienced connoisseur of calamity. And much as you might not expect Armageddon to have a sequel, I live in hope that there might yet be a Wastelands 2."

Also reviewing Wastelands is Dark Wolf Fantasy Reviews: "A very good book, with different stories that gathers different views of the apocalyptic events and I highly recommend it."

REVIEW: SFF World reviews Wastelands

Rob Bedford at SFF World reviews Wastelands: "I can’t help but give this collection the highest recommendation. I think this will be a cornerstone for most reader’s shelves."

His favorite stories in the book seemed to be "Artie’s Angels" by Catherine Wells, "The End of the Whole Mess" by Stephen King, "Dark, Dark Were the Tunnels" by George R. R. Martin, and "Judgment Passed" by Jerry Oltion.

REVIEW: Wastelands: A Post-Apocalyptic Anthology Done Right

Tech blogger Josh Smith is only part-way through Wastelands, but likes it quite a lot thus far: "One of the strongest parts of the anthology thus far is the decision by Adams to focus on stories which portray life after the apocalypse, forgoing zombies and other provocateurs and focusing on the struggles and stories of individuals in a dramatically different world.  This method of selection has led to some wonderful stories which allow me to connect with the individual characters and at some level understand them.  So far the stories have evoked a strong response from me due in part to the attempts of characters to “do good” in some manner and either failing or coming to a realistic and forlorn conclusion."

He goes on to praise the "For Further Reading" appendix: "As a reader I cannot begin to express how awesome this is to me.  Many times after finishing an anthology or collection I have been left at a loss as to where to find more material to read that is within the same vein as the original writing, something not always accomplished by reading the authors’ other  published work.  This reference has provided em a list of authors and books to add to my ‘To Read’ notebook in One Note."

REVIEW: Wastelands Conquers All, Says Omnivoracious

Over at the Amazon blog, Omnivoracious, Jeff VanderMeer has a nice piece about Wastelands, which is, incidentally, awesomely titled "Apocalypse Wow: Wastelands Conquers All." In it, Jeff says: "[Wastelands] has been one of the great success stories of the early part of 2008–selling out its initial print run (and going back to reprint), garnering rave reviews, and just generally conquering all in its path. Given the volatile nature of anthologies, which have a high failure rate, that’s quite an accomplishment. But it’s no surprise, given the careful editing and packaging of Wastelands, which has its own website (including free downloads of some of the fiction) and includes reprinted stories from the likes of Orson Scott Card, Jonathan Lethem, George R.R. Martin, Gene Wolfe, and many other luminaries." Jeff then sprinkles in some commentary by me, along with a selection of first lines from the stories, which he leaves un-identified to entice readers and leaving them to guess which stories and authors they come from.

Jeff says that the full interview he did with me will appear on the book’s Amazon page in the next week or two. Meanwhile, on his own blog, Ecstatic Days, Jeff leaked a bit of the interview, displaying my answer to his question: "Any funny stories in the anthology, and how did you deal with the possible problem of similarity of tone throughout the book?" Click through to find out!

Stainless Steel Review of Wastelands

Review blog Stainless Steel Droppings has a rave review of Wastelands, giving it a 4.5/5 rating. The reviewer says: "Editor John Joseph Adams’ collection of 22 stories, representing a wide-variety of post-apocalyptic scenarios from some of the field’s most prolific authors, is a must-have volume for fans of the this subgenre of science fiction. What makes Wastelands great, however, is that it contains the type and caliber of stories that should appeal to those who are simply fans of the format and are unsure of their feelings about post-apocalyptic literature." He also provides detailed commentary on each of the stories (with letter grades), singling out contributions by George R. R. Martin, Cory Doctorow, and David Grigg as being worth of A+ ratings.

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