Earth Abides is a post apocalyptic novel that was written by George Stewart over 60 years ago.
Stewart writes of one man's strengths and weaknesses as he struggles with loneliness, confusion, and the realization that the world he once knew is no longer familiar after a virus wiped out most of the population.
Stewart brilliantly stays clear of technology, which would have most likely outdated the book after a short time. Amazingly, not addressing the things he could not foresee in the future was the exact thing that keeps readers interested 60 years later.
Well written, thought provoking, tragic, and uplifting, Earth Abides is a classic. Don't miss this one.
Listens to short-stories in the horror, fantasy and science fiction genres. Loves Terry Pratchett and wants to go to Discworld some day.
Possibly the least engaging protagonist I've ever encountered in literature.
Isherwood Williams is a droll, conceited, elitist that attempts to lead a band of survivors in a post-apocalyptic California, circa 1947.
The story's premise is interesting but the main character's superior attitude is galling. Plus there are chauvinist and racist undertones to the narrative, which is barely tolerable. I had to keep reminding myself of the 1940's mindset.
The narration is the saving grace of this audio book.
I was surprised with how much I really enjoyed this story. I am not usually a fan of post-apocalyptic stories, mostly because they are often about angry and violent men but this one was so different! I read one review that said it was beautiful and also incredibly sad and I think both completely apply. While I don't agree with all of his assumptions about how society could possibly develop after being wiped out, I did find it very intriguing and thought-provoking as to how some of the elements that I've never considered would need to be addressed when society would start all over again. Again and again I forgot this was written before the digital age - so many of the elements of the story are applicable even now. Amazing story.
How was the reader? He was so good that he disappeared into the background completely. He emphasized where needed and inflected where needed. I was completely lost in the story because his reading was so masterful.
I loved this story so much. Stewart really stretches the imagination and goes into an epic of a story. I really enjoyed that it was written so long ago but I still imagined everything in my head in the present time. Outstanding job and great performance as well. I will listen to this again.
The performance saves an otherwise drab and forgetful story about a man devoid of emotion or any morality. I'd prefer death than living out the apocalypse with this man. At one point he considers essentially installing himself as a King over a group of black sharecroppers because they would be use to white authority. This man is a non-lethal sociopath as far as I'm concerned.
I wavered on whether I would purchase this book due to a fair number of reviews that described it as boring or depressing. Luckily, I ended up trying it out.
This book, being written in 1949, understandably has some dated terms and attitudes, but it is a thought-provoking and entertaining story of a world after a plague wipes out the majority of the population. I can understand the tone of this book seeming understated to many people since Stephen King introduced the bogeyman to post-apocalyptic books in The Stand. However, I enjoyed a completely humanistic story. I particularly enjoyed the evolution of the main character through the course of the story. At the beginning of the book, and at many times throughout, Ish has a distinctly arrogant attitude, but his personality and way of thinking evolves realistically and pleasantly as the story unfolds.
Compared to modern versions of the end-of-civilization stories, this is a slow-burn, but it is definitely high-quality.
I have mixed feelings about this book. Historically, it's important as one of the first modern post-apocalyptic novels, and it proved influential. Someone with such interests might appreciate this novel, as would someone who is looking for an alternative the fast-paced, action-packed post-apoc stories that are legion nowadays. It's very slow paced in terms of plot, and the character development is almost nil until the last few chapters. It would prove interesting for someone who might want a possibly-realistic view of the post-apocalypse--an alternative to the "fight and flight" trope we so much today. But I'm not sure most people would really care for the book otherwise.
The story was very slow at times, as was the reader. My mind tended to drift while listening in the car. But I do believe that this is an accurate depiction of what would happen if a major event were to annihilate most of the human race. And, if done well, this story could make a great movie.