EARTH ABIDES Mass Market Paperback – Aug 12 1981
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From the Inside Flap
A disease of unparalleled destructive force has sprung up almost simultaneously in every corner of the globe, all but destroying the human race. One survivor, strangely immune to the effects of the epidemic, ventures forward to experience a world without man. What he ultimately discovers will prove far more astonishing than anything he'd either dreaded or hoped for.
"From the Paperback edition. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
About the Author
George Rippey Stewart (May 31, 1895 – August 22, 1980) was an American toponymist, a novelist, and a professor of English at the University of California, Berkeley. He is best known for his only science fiction novel Earth Abides (1949), a post-apocalyptic novel, for which he won the first International Fantasy Award in 1951. It was dramatized on radio's Escape and inspired Stephen King's The Stand.
No Bio --This text refers to the MP3 CD edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
Earth Abides is the most meditative and serene post-apocalyptic novel I've ever read, and it's recommended for more thoughtful readers who won't be easily bored.
This book is filled with puzzling situations, frustrating moments, and mind-bending problems that make the reader ask, "What would I do?"
Plague has struck the world, and people are dying by the millions. A lone survivor, Ish, on a mountain camping trip manages to fend off the disease with snakebite. He returns to a frozen, empty world, and is determined to find civilization and life in the seemingly dead planet. Most of the people he meets are in shock, having seen the horrors of death and destruction of the planet and are stupefied, unable to talk sense or even take care of themselves. One man Ish comes across is drinking himself to death; only eating things out of cans and seems only half-alive. Through his journey's, Ish has a growing urge to settle down and establish life as he knew it again. He alone must save the human race.
I thought this book was very interesting, at first. The beginning was intriguing and exciting to think about. But after a while, the idea became old, and boring. Ish just begins to muse over the world's pathetic state, talk about how he's the only intelligent person left, and even starts to become a little snobbish to say the least. The way women were used merely as wombs, though logical in such a situation, got a little annoying also. The detail and wordiness left my mind to wonder away from the book, and I even recall something as simple as a storm drain overflowing taking up two pages to talk about.Read more ›
These minor historical curiosities aside, what truly amazes is the timeless of Stewart's story. How many science fiction novels from 1949 still rate the glowing reviews of "Earth Abides" you will find here? By comparison so many modern sci-fi stories are formulaic, written with short, choppy sentences, shallow characters, and action sequences ready made for transfer to the screen.
Stewart's vision of the future, where education and especially reading, slowly fad away after an apocalypse applies more to today's world than that of his own. His characters have little ability to bring back the technological remnants of the dead world, and truly, if 99% of the people on the planet were to disappear how many of us have the skills to keep the power going, the water flowing, and automobiles running decades after the disaster? His characters adapt to their environment in the most natural way.
In the nearly four decades I have been reading books this is one of a handful that has made a memorable impression and which I consistently continue to recommend.
Most recent customer reviews
Over simplification of characters, pointless drawn out writing, and misogynistic.
Don't bother, I wish I had paid attention to some of the reviews with lower ratings... Read more
An excellent, post-apocalyptic book. One man, alone to observe the collapse and reconstruction of Civilization.Published 8 months ago by David
A little dated in areas
Enjoyed reading it as a paper book
Well written by a great writer. Best of the genre. I was glad to see that there were several more printings after my first encounter with this fascinating story.Published on May 9 2013 by Alexander R. Winram
Isherwood Williams is away in the mountains pursuing his graduate field studies in geology. In our iPhone, instant connectivity world it is hard to imagine the isolation this kind... Read morePublished on Feb. 18 2013 by John M. Ford
Excellent story. Perhaps my favorite post-apocalyptic novel. Very sad at times, uplifting other times. Read morePublished on Jan. 31 2013 by Booklover73
For the first time in my life, I could not finish a novel. The author definetly set new ground with this book and I can see how it had wow factor at that time. Read morePublished on Oct. 21 2011 by mycrysie