Let’s take a quick look to see what’s arrived at the Geek Compound.
by Elizabeth Hand
Introduction by Kim Stanley Robinson
Cover by Heidi Whitcomb
It’s 1999 and the world is falling apart at the seams. The sky is afire, the oceans are rising—and mankind is to blame. While the spoils of the 20th Century dwindle, Jack Finnegan lives on the fringes in his decaying mansion, struggling to keep his life afloat and his loved ones safe while battling that most modern of diseases—AIDS.
As the New Millennium approaches, Jack’s former lover, a famous photographer reveling in the world’s decay, gifts him with a mysterious elixir called Fusax, a medicine rumored to cure the incurable AIDS. But soon, the "side effects" of Fusax become more apparent, and Jack gets mixed up with a bizarre entourage of rock stars, Japanese scientists, corporate executives, AIDS victims, and religious terrorists. While these larger players compete to control mankind’s fate in the 21st Century, Jack is forced to choose his own role in the World’s End, and how to live with it.
Originally published in 1997, Glimmering is a visionary mix of fantasy and science fiction about a world in which humanity struggles to cope with the ever-approaching "End of the End."
by Rob Reid
In the hilarious tradition of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Rob Reid takes you on a headlong journey through the outer reaches of the universe—and the inner workings of our absurdly dysfunctional music industry.
Low-level entertainment lawyer Nick Carter thinks it’s a prank, not an alien encounter, when a redheaded mullah and a curvaceous nun show up at his office. But Frampton and Carly are highly advanced (if bumbling) extraterrestrials. And boy, do they have news.
The entire cosmos, they tell him, has been hopelessly hooked on humanity’s music ever since “Year Zero” (1977 to us), when American pop songs first reached alien ears. This addiction has driven a vast intergalactic society to commit the biggest copyright violation since the Big Bang. The resulting fines and penalties have bankrupted the whole universe. We humans suddenly own everything—and the aliens are not amused.
Nick Carter has just been tapped to clean up this mess before things get ugly, and he’s an unlikely galaxy-hopping hero: He’s scared of heights. He’s also about to be fired. And he happens to have the same name as a Backstreet Boy. But he does know a thing or two about copyright law. And he’s packing a couple of other pencil-pushing superpowers that could come in handy.
Soon he’s on the run from a sinister parrot and a highly combustible vacuum cleaner. With Carly and Frampton as his guides, Nick now has forty-eight hours to save humanity, while hopefully wowing the hot girl who lives down the hall from him.
The McSweeney’s Book of Politics and Musicals
Edited by Christopher Monks
Cover by Brian McMullen and Jason Fulford
Ever since John Hancock broke into song after signing the Declaration of Independence, American politics and musicals have been inextricably linked. From Alexander Hamilton’s jazz hands, to Chester A. Arthur’s oboe operas, to Newt Gingrich’s off-Broadway sexscapade, You, Me, and My Moon Colony Mistress Makes Three, government and musical theater have joined forces to document our nation’s long history of freedom, partisanship, and dancers on roller skates pretending to be choo choo trains.
To celebrate this grand union of entrenched bureaucracy and song, the patriots at McSweeney’s Internet Tendency (“The Iowa Caucus of humor websites”) offer this riotous collection (peacefully assembled!) of monologues, charts, scripts, lists, diatribes, AND musicals written by the noted fake-musical lyricist, Ben Greenman. On the agenda are . . .
Fragments from PALIN! THE MUSICAL
Barack Obama’s Undersold 2012 Campaign Slogans
Atlas Shrugged Updated for the Financial Crisis
Your Attempts to Legislate Hunting Man for Sport Reek of Class Warfare
A 1980s Teen Sex Comedy Becomes Politically Uncomfortable
Donald Rumsfeld Memoir Chapter Title Or German Heavy Metal Song?
Noises Political Pundits Would Make If They Were Wild Animals and Not Political Pundits
Ron Paul Gives a Guided Tour of His Navajo Art Collection
Classic Nursery Rhymes, Updated and Revamped for the Recession, As Told to Me By My Father
And much more!
by Grant Morrison
What Masked Vigilantes, Miraculous Mutants, and a Sun God from Smallville Can Teach Us About Being Human
Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Iron Man, and the X-Men—the list of names as familiar as our own. They are on our movie and television screens, in our videogames and in our dreams. But what are they trying to tell us? For Grant Morrison, one of the most acclaimed writers in the world of comics, these heroes are powerful archetypes who reflect and predict the course of human existence: Through them we tell the story of ourselves. In this exhilarating work of a lifetime, Morrison draws on art, archetypes, and his own astonishing journeys through this shadow universe to provide the first true history of our great modern myth: the superhero.
Now with a new Afterword