Stories concerning the end of the world have always resonated with readers, and the recent popularity of shows like ‘The Last Man on Earth’ and of course, ‘The Walking Dead’ have shown such media can be simultaneously engaging while being drastically different in tone. Such is also the case with this second anthology of ‘Wastelands’ titled ‘Wastelands 2: More Stories of the Apocalypse.’ Contained within its pages are thirty-one tales spun by thirty-one talented authors.
Editor John Joseph Adams has done an exceptional job of finding even more cream of the crop from this specific sub genre of fiction. There are the expected serious, gritty entries such as The Tamarisk Hunter by Paolo Bacigalupi, Animal Husbandry by Seanan McGuire, and A Flock of Birds by James Van Pelt, A Beginners Guide to Survival Before, During, and After the Apocalypse by Christopher Barzak and When We Went to See the End of the World by Robert Silverberg, are more satiric in nature, but prove to be equally as engaging.
This equal level of quality across the board is certainly this compilations greatest strength and what truly makes it worth the read. Whether seeing the outbreak of a deadly virus through the eyes of a trapped child, watching humankind literally transform to survive a series of apocalypses, or following a man open up a business among the world’s rubble, each story provides a fresh perspective among the book’s five hundred plus pages.
No matter what your favorite flavor of end of the world yarn may be, this tome comes highly recommended.
Publication Date: February 2015 Publisher: Titan Books
Page Count: 513 ISBN: 978-1-783-291-502