Aug 242011


Earth Abides
by George R Stewart

Something happens while Ish recovers from a rattlesnake bite.  Ish is a graduate student of ecology in California, and while hiking in the mountains is bit by a rattlesnake.  He manages to make it back to his cabin, where he eventually recovers.  Then, Ish heads down into town, but no one is there…

Set in the 1940s, this book tells the tale of what happens when a killer illness removes most of the Earth’s humans.  Ish finds himself alone in the world after his recovery.  He travels all the way across the country to New York, just to see what has become of the country, and his journey shows the different way the few survivors re-create their worlds.

Ish returns to California and begins to collect people, who begin to invest in a settlement and community.  As the intellectual of the group, Ish wrestles with the ‘what ifs,’ struggling to think of ways to shape his new community into a bright future.  Throughout the book, we see glimpses of the collapse of our man made artifacts as Earth retakes her land.  We also see how new societies grow, and how from certain perceptions, religion arises.  Ish tries very hard to steward his group into a future of sustainability and growth, and through the tale of his life we learn that Earth Abides.

Check out this great classic and others at the library today!