Contented Reader

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Archive for November 2011

After the Apocalypse

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After the Apocalypse

Maureen F. McHugh

Small Beer Press

This is a book I’ve been looking forward to.  I took McHugh’s previous collection of short stories, Mothers and Other Monsters, with me to China a few summers ago, where I read it in some truly odd places.  Once I saw the reviews that her latest collection was getting, I was eagerly watching my mailbox for my copy to arrive.

This collection is even better than the first.

The stories are connected by a thematic thread- the aftermath of the end of the world.  The form the end of the world takes is different in each story, some a literal apocalypse (the zombie apocalypse features in several of the stories, also bird flu and a nuclear strike), some an apocalypse only for one character (the impending death of a parent, a medical experiment gone badly wrong).  McHugh’s prose style is deceptively simple: she chooses simple words and simple structures, assembled with devastating competence to create powerful emotional effects.

I close the book feeling quiet and haunted.

Written by Contented Reader

November 19, 2011 at 7:51 am

Posted in Reviews

This week’s free ebooks

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Kind of a slow week at Project Gutenberg, but here are a few new additions that looked interesting.  If you like, check out the new additions list for yourself, and see if your luck is any better than mine.

Written by Contented Reader

November 1, 2011 at 6:48 am

Posted in Project Gutenberg