Apocalypse Fiction Club schedule and discussion area
October 21, 2015 2:10 PM - Subscribe

I propose we read a book a month, with a scheduled discussion on the first Wednesday of each month. Here’s what I propose to launch this club, with a focus on which books I’d like to start with. I am open to suggestion and feedback here. Yay!

November 4th, Riddley Walker by Russell Hoban
From the acclaimed author of Bedtime for Frances, comes a novel of the unspecified, post technological apocalypse future, where society is slowly rebuilding, people are on the run from packs of wild dogs, and possibly nefarious puppeteers are constructing society. Written in a made-up dialect and touching on medieval imagery, this is a very unusual book.
Check out these annotations and reviews here.

December 2nd: Brown Girl in the Ring by Nalo Hopkins
In downtown Toronto after total economic collapse, a mother tries to survive, avoiding violent gangs that run the city and skeptically receiving her grandmother’s knowledge of herbs and traditional ceremonies. This book was a winner of a best first novel contest leading to its publication and launching the career of Nalo Hopkins.
NY Times review.

January 6: Three Moments of Explosion by China Mieville
This short fiction collection features several stories that have an apocalyptic/post-apocalyptic flavor. In Polynia, the ghosts of vanished geologic and ecologic features haunt the warmed globe, with icebergs floating in the air over London, coral forming the “Great Brussels Reef,” and rain forest undergrowth shutting down factories in Japan. In the story Keep, victims of a deadly epidemic become ringed by trenches — depressions suddenly erupting in the earth.

Month 4, Vote Here for your choice!:
1. Louise Erdrich’s Antelope Wife. Not a conventional “post apocalyptical” tale, but one that talks about a real cultural apocalypse, and infused with mythology and some magic. (Suggested here
2. How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff, winner of various children’s fiction awards, this story follows a 15 year old girl staying on a remote farm during the outbreak of WWIII.
3. On Such a Full Day by Chang-rae Lee. A post-America future with strict class stratification, the novel has been described as “lyrical” and “intensely bleak.
posted by latkes to Apocalypse Fiction Club (16 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Addendum: Book 4 in February will be The Wake by Paul Kingsnorth, cross posting with Historical Fiction Book Club.

Book 5 will be our "Voters Choice" month with one of the three options listed above
posted by latkes at 3:24 PM on October 21, 2015

You had me at "Riddley".
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 4:36 PM on October 21, 2015 [1 favorite]

Hopefully I can find the time to participate in this. I just put Riddley Walker on hold at the library.

I've read Brown Girl in the Ring and On Such a Full Day. I have Three Moments of an Explosion and was going to read it soon, so this works out nicely.
posted by tofu_crouton at 6:22 AM on October 22, 2015

Can I put in a vote for Emily Mandel's Station Eleven in Month 6 or after? I'm reading it at the moment and finding it pretty amazing.
posted by Happy Dave at 6:07 AM on November 2, 2015 [1 favorite]

I just finished On Such a Full Sea by Chang-Rae Lee and I really liked it - however I think that it is more of a literary work that deals with themes of mythic journeys, and if you are judging it by SF standards, it might not hold up for you (see Ursula LeGuin's review for an example of this critique). I know there's a lot of hard-core SF fans on Metafilter, but there's also a lot of lit-fic fans, so it would be interesting to see how the discussion goes.
posted by matildaben at 11:28 AM on November 2, 2015

Cool. I'll take a look at Station Eleven and interesting about On Such a Full Sea. That LeGuin, she's kind of a grump sometimes. (She's earned it!)

Hope everyone is ready to talk Riddley Walker tomorrow!
posted by latkes at 7:15 AM on November 3, 2015

I'm working on it but because of nanowrimo, I think I will end up chiming in very late.
posted by tofu_crouton at 7:34 AM on November 3, 2015

I just read Station Eleven and I have opinions.
posted by bq at 11:18 AM on February 26, 2016

Hi all, sorry for the late follow up. I'm decided to discontinue Apocalypse Fiction Club, based on lack of participation. I look forward to updates to the FanFare format and further developments in how "books" should work here. My guess is it's best to get a commitment from a certain number of people before posting a book, but we'll see how it goes.
posted by latkes at 12:12 PM on February 26, 2016

Bummer! I think it's a great concept. I enjoyed The wake. I think Three Moments was a difficult discussion because it was short stories (and even I as a Mieville fan couldn't actually finish the book, it was def. odd). Has anyone else read (or willing to read) Station Eleven for a discussion? My meat life book club chose it for this month, coincidentally.
posted by bq at 12:30 PM on February 27, 2016

I was also delighted with Riddley
posted by bq at 12:31 PM on February 27, 2016

Had a wonderful real life conversation about Station Eleven yesterday actually.

Thanks for having organized the club, latkes!
posted by tofu_crouton at 12:53 PM on February 27, 2016

Hi all, I am continuing to post occasional apocalypsefiction_club posts, in case anyone is interested!
posted by latkes at 11:08 AM on July 11, 2017

May I post Station Eleven when I've finished it?
posted by the man of twists and turns at 8:05 PM on December 28, 2017

That would be great! I have not really carried on the project, but that book does look intriguing. I can try to read it too.
posted by latkes at 9:34 PM on December 28, 2017

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