I know most of the library acquisitions in the bunker have been to get us prepared for the coming conflagration, but as we suffer through the death throes of society, I can’t help but think of the need for some humour. Things will be grim. We need laughs.
Of course we need the collected Austen because:
For what do we live, but to make sport for our neighbors and laugh at them in our turn?
And in close quarters for long periods of time, we will need all the elegant snark we can get:
I do not want people to be very agreeable, as it saves me the trouble of liking them a great deal.
Barbara Pym is a must, too, though her sadly disappointed characters might also be a tad depressing at times. Dorothy Parker without question: mordant wit may be among our few escapes from the gloom. Gaskell‘s Cranford stories for quieter times, when you want to know the ladies have got your back. And Georgette Heyer for when you’ve just finished re-reading all the Austen and can’t bear another dull conversation about cleaning out the air vents.
Bunker Am Dram cannot survive without a production or two of Aphra Behn’s The Rover.
And I must say a special word for my much adored inspiration, the lovely Winifred Watson. If you’ve not read the novel behind the delightful Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day you are in for a treat.
Who are your favourite fun writers? I admit most of mine are, alas, beyond the veil. Got some more modern recommendations?
At GGSA, we’re all about the preparation. When the apocalypse comes – whenever and however it comes – we want you to be ready. So we’re more than happy to share io9‘s reading list of novels that could help you prepare for a future pandemic.
From Camus to Cronin via Shelley and Matheson, there’s something for everyone… so get reading!
Are there any books you’d add to the list? Which novels will you turn to when the time comes? Tell us in the comments, and help us to build the GGSA library!
I don’t normally do this but i’m cross posting this from Un:Bound because it’s definitely one for my girls… strong female lead, end of the world, guns and stuff… Honeybadger out.
Sheri volunteers on the kill crew regularly, she’s on it more than a lot of the men that volunteer and she’s damn good at it. Since the world went quiet it’s pretty much what keeps her going. Can’t say much more than that for fear of spoilers.
D’Lacey does a superb job of little by little building the world post ‘event’, letting the reader in on what they need to know and creating the characters that matter. The knife edge between hope and inevitability is handled masterfully and I was held, rapt throughout. There are some nice twists and the action is mostly deceptively gentle in pace for a fairly violent story.
Zombie fans, this is….. something wonderfully, deliciously different and yet still right up your street. It asks the questions zombie tales usually duck and hints at things that twist your head a little. In short, it’s brilliant, it’s tempting me to Meat even though the subject matter is a particular squick issue for me. I will perhaps read everything else he’s written first…. also, that cover, very Girls Guide to Surviving the Apocalypse.
by Katemandi, Last Girl on Earth
What’s better than a kick ass role model? A kick ass role model with her own cocktail! Yes, it’s the Chastity Flame, based on the super sexy spy (or do we call them ‘governmental operatives’ now?) created by C. Margery Kempe. I’ll let her tell you about it:
If you want to bevvy up for the apocalypse, here’s a little drink you can try out. It first appeared in the Noble Romance Christmas Bonus Recipe Book. I was inspired by the wise words of one of my literary inspirations:
~ Kingsley Amis, Everyday Drinking
When I created Chastity Flame, my sexy government agent, of course I had Ian Fleming’s Bond in the back of my head. While working on the sequel, Lush Situation (which draws its name from Richard Hamilton’s piece, of course), I decided that Chas needed a drink just as memorable as Bond’s “shaken not stirred” martini. Et voilá! I give you
The Chastity Flame:
2 measures gin (I recommend Boodle’s or Tanqueray Rangpur)
1 measure vodka ( I recommend Zubrowka, Reyka or Stoli)
A generous dash of bitters (is there any but Angostura that will do?)
Pour all the ingredients into a shaker with plenty of ice, but don’t dawdle or it will get dilluted. Strain the chilled contents into martini glass — or a tumbler if you’re a heathen. Garnish with a lime slice and a shot of lime juice if you like that sort of thing (I do). It should be the color of Chastity’s amber eyes and be rather lethal, but then again, so is its inspiration. A perfect accompaniment for a stimulating book.
Or even the apocalypse!
As the nights draw in and the zombies stumble over your attempts at Christmas-ing up the front garden, what better thing is there than to pick a drink from the cocktail cabinet and settle down with some post apocalyptic reading.
Today’s recommendation is a short story by Joe R. Lansdale – Christmas with the Dead – which can be found in The Mammoth Book of Best New Horror #22 (ed. Stephen Jones).
So what’s it about?
Well, my darlings, it’s a beautiful tale of Christmas in the zombie apocalypse and one man’s quest to decorate his house and do a little Christmas shopping. There are clever tricks to avoid the shambling hoards mixed in with the sad story of the Christmas that zombiefied the local populace and a rather sweet ending that will tug your heartstrings. Oh, and Buffy gets a cameo. Of sorts.
Wonderfully written with some nifty dark humour this is an apocalyptic must-read.