David's Reviews > The Mammoth Book of the End of the World

The Mammoth Book of the End of the World by Mike Ashley
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's review
Aug 17, 2011

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bookshelves: fiction
Read in August, 2011

I don't know why I like reading this kind of fiction - probably for the same reason I enjoy watching disaster mvoies, whatever that reason is - but I enjoyed this collection of short stories. As in any collection, I enjoyed some of the stories more than others, but they all provide fascinating glimpses into possible endings to human life (and sometimes into possible endings of the earth itself) as well as insghts into how people might react to or live with any number of natural or man-made disasters.

Some of these stories are quite short, others longer. Most of the authors are well-know, award-winning writers, and their stories are organized into three sections: The Nature of the Catastrophe, Beyond Armageddon, and The End of All Things.

As imaginative works, I don't find stories lke these depressing. Rather, I find them (the better ones) really interesting in their examination of the human psyche. How would someone react to the unfolding of a cataclysmic event? How would they react to the knowledge that such an event was going to happen before it occurs? How would they adapt to life afterwards (where it remains possible)?

Many of these stories are thought-provoking, some are merely entertaining (not a criticism), and a few present images that I continue to think about days later.

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