This is my first anthology that I’ve reviewed, and it took a while to finish because I do not usually read sci-fi in the technical sense. Most of my sci-fi experiences involve either video games or movies.
However, it took several months to read because of the variation of stories inside this anthology. I debated on which way to review this piece, and I decided to give a general overview, spotlighting some favorite stories in this collection.
Without further ado, I give you The Doomsday Chronicles, which earned 5/5 stars.
For a sci-fi book, the cover was on point here. It has a Star Trekky feel, and the typography was on par and readable. The way the cracked earth and the planet play into the backdrop helped bring out the color of the text, so I think the cover artist did a good job here.
The theme for this anthology was dystopian/apocalyptic settings and having the characters adapt to those settings or die.
Keeping this prompt to a broad topic held a mixed bag of stories because some of the authors went out of the box for this one. As someone who also does this on their challenges, I appreciated learning about some new authors while seeing some familiar faces in the field.
Be warned: some of the stories held a personal revenge tone, while others were just as the theme depicted. The story I felt fit with the revenge theme was The Voices That We Keep by Hubble, and the one which stuck to an environmental circumstance included Dragonflies by McGuire.
One exception weaved both beautifully: The Slip by Arroyo.
There were several stories I liked within this anthology, particularly The Voices That We Keep by Hubble, The Slip by Arroyo, Power Outage by Heisey, and The Last Siege of Olympus by Knite. These stories stuck with me based on their characterization, their unique storytelling and the way they introduced their characters into the world that they needed to adapt to or face their deaths.
Hubble and Knite had characters that were so wholesome in their quest but made mistakes so heinous they regretted being the heroes in their own stories. I could relate to these people as someone who writes these themselves, so this made my heart ache and feel for these particular characters. Neither one had happy-feel-good endings, but if you are looking for those, this anthology is not for you 🙂
The Slip is one we have seen in different variations in movies and books, but Arroyo’s unique spin on this being school-aged characters captured my interest. I do not usually read books unless they feature adult characters, so mad props go to this author for her unique story-telling. I was thrilled with the way Arroyo ended this story.
However, the other story which grabbed my attention was Power Outage because of the way magic was used within this story. As someone who writes about magic and it based on the person’s mental state and emotions, Heisey’s telling of Lieve struck a chord with me. I don’t see people telling magic on people’s emotional states often, so it was a nice change from seeing magic used as “just a cool plot device”.
Grammar, formatting, and readability
From what I’ve read, this is one of the cleanest anthologies I have seen to date regarding formatting and grammatical errors. The editors nailed this one, and I was pleased to see this.
The language used by the authors was basic enough that those who do not read sci-fi could dig into this book without needing a glossary or terminology. They appealed to their target audience while still leaving room for others to enjoy all the stories in this anthology.
At first, I had my doubts because I had been out of the sci-fi reading genre for so long. However, I did receive a copy of this for my honest opinion by Heisey (who, as many of you know, is my cover artist). However, the critique I left for their work was based on their skill, and I was pleasantly surprised to discover several new authors whom I’ve followed since reading this anthology.
If you are interested in reading the Doomsday Chronicles, click the book’s name or the picture at the top of this review.
And as always, if you loved this book, please share with your favorite hashtag!
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