I can’t even remember the last time I’ve read a collection of short stories. Which is a shame because they’re so easy to digest. If you don’t like the tale, it’s going to be over soon. If you loved it, you lie in wonder about how a 30,000 word story fucked you up so much.
Wastelands, as its title implies, is about the end of the world. A collection of short stories ranging from futuristic, to the horrible, to the Mad Max-ish. I can recommend it for the sheer variety of tales and some of the more unique perspectives on what after the end could look like.
Overall, I enjoyed myself more than I didn’t enjoy myself. Stephen King’s opening story, a letter to the historian who will wonder just how the world ended, by the man who helped make it happen, certainly set the right tone. The apocalypse, from the perspective of some extremely nerdy IT guys was especially interesting. Mostly because it was so ludicrous and real at the same time. Some stories finished and I retained nothing, others danced around saying something but chose instead to ride off into the sunset. I did buy a novel because I liked the short story of a particular author though, so that’s nice.
If this is your genre, this is a decent read. But if you’re not feeling the tale within the first page, it’s safe to move on to the next one.
2.5 out of 4 stars.