Monday, January 21, 2008


I just finished Canticle for Leibowitz. Took me awhile, a bit of a boring read. The premise is after the bomb, society will crumble and it's only salvation is the catholic church. Right after the balloon went up, an engineer and a bunch of scientists decided to get together with some monks and store all the information they could. Society decided to kill all men of learning and burn all books, because they were so pissed that technology had made their world into an irradiated waste land. So these monks became "bookleggers". After a hundred of years or so, of copying and recopying any text they could find, they had no idea what any of it meant. One guy made an illuminated gold leaf copy of an electronic schematic. Crazy stuff.

It goes on to detail three ages. A few generations after the bomb, few hundred years later when there is a new renaissance centered around the abbey of Leibowitz, and even farther in the future when space travel is possible. Nice to read a cold war era, pre Mad Max apocalypse story. I like Mad Max, but it seems like he turned the irradiated future into a place full of hard ass punks in muscle cars. Anyway, this book works as inspiration for Gamma World cryptic societies, and a less gonzo view of what happens when society crumbles.


Infamous Jum said...

Don't forget the mutants! Especially that one, in the third part, you know? I got to read that for a class in high school, and I still have the book. Good stuff!

I prefer the Fist of the Northstar post-apocalypse, where everyone is a kung fu killing machine and the greatest hope they have is a sack of seeds.

skeleri said...

I did like in Canticle how they thought of fallout as some kind of demon or spirit. Plus you can't beat the divine talking head/conjoined twin at the end. Never seen fist of the Northstar, piteous me.

Infamous Jum said...

Well! Theres a series, theres a movie, theres a really horrible American live-action movie... really, the Japanese animated movie is pretty good, if dated. Its got all kinds of crazy fighters, like:

One guy who stabs your pressure points with his hands, causing either your head to explode or every vein in your body to explode;

A guy who moves his hands so fast he slices you into tidy pieces;
A guy who just sort of pushes his fingers into you real slow-like, piercing your skin;

Also a really gigantic guy, I don't remember what he did, but he was god-damn huge.

skeleri said...

I think I saw the swollen head guy part in the american movie, pretty crazy.