If you have any interest at all in weird fiction, you’re probably aware of Jeff VanderMeer’s new novel, Annihilation (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, February 4). Annihilation is one of the best novels I’ve read in recent years. (My review here.) I admit I’ve been geeking out over it. Rather than terrifying the author, though, I’ll channel my enthusiasm into creating a link package (admittedly incomplete) with the intention of promoting Annihilation to fellow readers of speculative fiction. Please feel free to leave additional links in the comments; I’ll add them to the body of the post as time permits.
“In other words, the power went out in my apartment and I was so consumed with reading Annihilation that I sat with a small flashlight gripped between my teeth so I could continue reading.” Chris Urie at Geekadelphia.
“One thing I am confident of is that Annihilation will be the most groundbreaking book published this year.” The Little Red Reviewer.
“And immersion really is the appropriate word in this case. VanderMeer has crafted a deeply compelling, immersive, and satisfying narrative.” Michael Matheson at ChiZine.com.
“Using evocative descriptions of the biologist’s outer and inner worlds, masterful psychological insight, and intellectual observations both profound and disturbing—calling Lovecraft to mind and Borges—Vandermeer unfolds a tale as satisfying as it is richly imagined.” Publishers Weekly.
“I hated it from the start. Didn’t come up for air again for three hours, and finished the entire thing in less than a day, knowing it finally for the strange, clever, off-putting, maddening, claustrophobic, occasionally beautiful, occasionally disturbing and altogether fantastic book that it is. Annihilation is a book meant for gulping — for going in head-first and not coming up for air until you hit the back cover.” Jason Sheehan at NPR.
Best Books of February pick, Amazon.
Interviews with/essays from VanderMeer
“For me the books are a fascinating look at what I used to call ‘omenology,’ a sort of reading of the landscape for presences that are not apparent, for meanings that are not deliberate.” Rick Kleffel interviews VanderMeer at The Agony Column.
“It’s really peculiar — Annihilation is, on an autobiographical level, a love song to a place I know so well, and thus nothing in it really scared me, except the initial vision of what was in the tunnel. But I will tell you that while writing Authority, I continually felt as if things were peering out at me from the text, and more than once I had to step away and stop writing.” Barnes & Noble Review.
“VanderMeer dreamed he was descending into a subterranean tower, following along behind a monster that was writing eerie sermons on the wall in bioluminescent fungus. He used the monster’s words in his novel.” Geek’s Guide to the Galaxy at Wired.
“On the other hand, this was a pretty weird dream — and one of those dreams that’s extremely detailed to the point of not realizing that you’re in a dream at all. I can’t lie — I was scared while dreaming this dream, frightened out of my mind. (If I hadn’t gotten a story out of it, I suppose I’d be calling it a “nightmare” or, more accurately, a “nightfreakout.”)” Jeff VanderMeer at Powells Books.
“The exact location of Area X is left vague, but it’s based in part on my hiking in North Florida’s Panhandle region, much of which contains a rich ecosystem of swamp, marsh, pine forest, lakes, and coastal habitats. It’s a place you can get lost in, which is rare these days, and it’s unbelievably beautiful as well.” Photoessay by VanderMeer at Omnivoracious.
Weird Fiction Review
Readers will find a number of articles about Annihilation at Weird Fiction Review, of which VanderMeer is an editor.
Essay: “Annihilation,” Part One, Eric Basso.
Essay: “Annihilation,” Part Two, Eric Basso.
Annihilation Gallery, art associated with the book, Jeff VanderMeer.
Annihilation: Visionary, Surreal, and Satisfying Cover Art, Jeff VanderMeer.
Annihilation: “Weird” Nature, Jeff VanderMeer.
Join a Southern Reach Expedition to Area X
If you’re still on the fence…
Look! A review of Authority (Southern Reach #2)