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THE PEOPLE’S APOCALYPSE Edited by Ariel Gore & Jenny Forrester

Distributed By: www.microcosmpublishing.com


This sometimes thrilling, sometimes boring, always interesting set of short essays seems to be born out of a shared desire for egalitarianism when the end of the world finally comes crashing down. Whether it’s nuclear holocaust, climate change, or fossil fuel depletion, either we should all slide back into the Dark Ages together, or nobody should. The editors did a great job capturing a vast array of voices, from ‘zinesters, to environmentalists, to special operations personnel, some even advocating expediting the fall of civilization so that the planet can hurry up and get to the business of repairing itself already. Some of the more compelling threads involve scientists postulating the sea could be devoid of life in just 50 years according to some models, or the way that modern life distracts us from the truly important things. As the book says, for some people, the first instinct when waking up in the morning is not to kiss our lover awake or snuggle with our kids for a few minutes, but to immediately check our iPhone. I enjoyed the notes on how to construct a solar oven, using grapefruit seed extract to purify water, the French 75 gin and champagne cocktail recipe, what it was like growing up in Los Alamos, or the short sci-fi story about what happens when diocryocin from the Mars polar caps pummels Earth with toxic sex ash. The largest theme connecting these pieces is a tried and true notion about enjoying the journey and not trying to cling to a fleeting destination. The title itself, The People’s Apocalypse, is about reclaiming the end times as our own. It’s not about survival per se, but about making connections with family, friends, and lovers, and enjoying it while it lasts. Grade B+.

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