What's the Name of That Book??? discussion

This topic is about Fire
SOLVED: Adult Fiction > SOLVED. narrative of post-apocalyptic America in the tradition of 'The Stand' [s]

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message 1: by Feliks (last edited Aug 25, 2013 11:15PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Feliks (dzerzhinsky) So I am re-posting under 'WTNotB'.

The book I am seeking is very much like Robert McCammon's 'Swan Song'. You'll see as you read the description, below.

I guess one way to solve this would be to ask if that work ever had a different title? Say in a galley print? Its very close in plot. I just can't recall ever having held a book in my hands called 'Swan Song'.

Original post (on Horror Aficionados)

I only remember a few tantalizing clues about it. First, it may not be really that great of a book; I think what I actually read was some kind of manuscript proof or draft. I remember the jacket blurbs describing how it was a 'bold, new, and terrifying tale' from 'a first-time horror author breaking into the field', etc etc etc

It is a narrative of post-apocalyptic America in the tradition of 'The Stand' or 'A Boy and His Dog'. It is also a 'journey' based story where 1-3 characters unite to wander across several U.S. midwestern states in search of their shared goal.

Its possibly called 'Mark of the Beast' or 'Number of the Beast' or 'Revelation of the Beast' or 'Number of the AntiChrist' or 'Beasts of the Armaggedon' or something else very Biblical. The freaky-deaky events in the book are tightly tied into religious theme as way to heighten tension.

Plot is **loosely** this: a meteor(?) accidentally strikes a secret biological weapons-experimental lab in the midwest; mixing together a deadly cocktail of chemicals, radioactivity, and infectious agents.

A hideous plague resulting from this incident, runs rampant across the country (I think it actually kills most of the country's population) the only survivors are the wildly mutated lab animals and just a few humans.

I think there is a lab 'cat' who becomes as big as a sabre-toothed tiger? Things like that.

The leader of the little band is perhaps a doctor who formerly worked at the lab. He may be traveling somewhere to a) find a cure for the plague, b) find his loved ones, c) hunt down the lab director who himself has mutated into something fearsome, or d) all of the above.

The theme of 'human mutation' --humans morphed into gruesome, horrible, demonic-like beasts--yet still retaining their human feelings--is a big part of the terror in the book.

message 2: by Tab (new)

Tab (tabbrown) | 5009 comments Any ideas on the year the book was published or when it was read?

message 3: by Feliks (last edited Aug 26, 2013 09:22AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Feliks (dzerzhinsky) Around the same time as McKammon's; which is even more frustrating to my attempts to track it down.

It had a red, black, and white cover with flames and smoke all over the background; and I swear it was not McKammon's work *unless* his first galley proofs went temporarily under an alternate title.

I am positive that the title was in heavy, 'blocky' font and had a very long Biblical word in it--I was bemused at the time because it was clear the art director had to find a way to squeeze the word onto the cover, width-wise. It almost didn't fit.

Something with a "-tion" suffix like 'Resurrection'; 'Revelation'; 'Desecration'; 'Consecration'; 'Destruction'.

Meanwhile, the first part of the title was something like 'Mark of'..; 'Number of..'; 'Beast of..'; 'Devil of..'; 'AntiChrist of'...; 'Covenant of ...'.

There definitely was some kind of 'beast' or Balrog-type demon in the book; maybe the chief director of the lab; transmogrified into something fearsome by the lab explosion/radioactive plague.

Once transformed into this dreadful behemoth, he was either pursuing the hero or the hero was forced to track it down across several hundred miles (its a 'journey'-structured tale) and confront it. There was also something which was being sought which was a way to cure the world back into health. Although I don't see how, since the author pretty much trashed the planet with this storyline.

I am pretty sure that the premise which starts all the chaos --the plot-engine--was, something like a radioactive plague.

message 4: by BookWoman (new)

BookWoman | 125 comments Could it be Fire by Alan Rodgers? Several of your details seem to match this book.

Feliks (dzerzhinsky) Hey! that's a mighty good guess! I will have to check it out and get back to you. All leads like this, much appreciated.

Feliks (dzerzhinsky) lol @ the gushing blurbs

message 7: by BookWoman (new)

BookWoman | 125 comments I wish I could find my copy to check but I may have given it away...it really wasn't that good. However, I really feel sure this is your book. "Balrog" is exactly how I envisioned the creature when I read the book. More on the plot is described here:


Good luck!

Trilobyte | 152 comments Dark AdventI've heard this being compared to Swan Song. I haven't read it yet, but the cover seems to fit your description.

Feliks (dzerzhinsky) you know...since further investigation of leads so far may take some time..I have decided to mark this inquiry 'solved' and gratefully thank everyone who assisted. Bravo! I salute you! I feel that the books recommended as the candidates, are either all but certain to be the real mccoy-- or, so close as to make further hunting, 'moot'.

Thank you again. My hat is off to you for solving a challenging dilemma!

message 10: by Amy (new) - rated it 5 stars

Amy Casil (asterling) | 2 comments Feliks, if you did locate another copy of Fire, and did read it and enjoy it, we would love to hear from you. We are re-publishing all of Alan Rodgers' books in trade paperback, e-book and audio book editions.

Alan passed away March 8 - we are seeking to preserve his work and ensure it continues to be available to readers.

message 11: by Amy (new) - rated it 5 stars

Amy Casil (asterling) | 2 comments Also, I've read the description again. This is NOT Fire by Alan Rodgers. There's no meteor, no cat, etc.

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