The End: Visions of Apocalypse – N. E. White

The_End_–_Visions_of_Apocalypse_-_NE_White_cover

A collection of stories about the end of the world, in one form or another.

The anthology was built from an online discussion group contest, and unfortunately, it has that feel. There are some decent stories in here, but not really anything that stands out, including from the better known authors. Several of the stories are really just scenes or vignettes, not ‘proper stories’, and some others are obvious enough that there’s not much payoff in reading past the first few pages. One is largely a collection of references to SFF classics, with a loose story built around it. One other was in graphic form that was unreadable on my Nook.

The best stories in the group are:

  • “Silver Sky” by Liam Baldwin – an extravagant plan to save the Earth is under threat by terrorists. Baldwin does a nice job here. While the story could use some polish and edits for clarity, it works pretty well as is.
  • “Empty Nest”, by R. F. Dickson – the Earth gives warning. Original and clever, though by nature a slight idea that could have been dealt with more concisely.

Other interesting stories are:

  • “Fly the Moon to Me”, by Stephen “B5” Jones – three scavengers lay claim to an extraordinary find. This one had lots of potential, but the ending was disappointing.
  • “Relapse” by Norman Gray – Groundhog day at the end of the world. Again, a story that almost worked, but didn’t quite. Here, while I think the author had a good idea for the end, I wish he’d done a little more with the emotions.


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