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Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Books

Darkness and Dawn

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Darkness and Dawn

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Author: George Allan England
Publisher: Hyperion, 1974
Original English publication, 1912
Series: Hyperion Classics of Science Fiction: Book 14
Book Type: Omnibus
Genre: Science-Fiction
Sub-Genre Tags: Apocalyptic/Post-Apocalyptic
Pulp
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Synopsis

England's trilogy, Darkness and Dawn (published in 1912, 1913 and 1914 as The Vacant World, Beyond the Great Oblivion and Afterglow) tells the story of 2 modern people who awake a thousand years after the earth was devastated by a meteor. They work to rebuild civilization.

The Vacant World - Beatrice Kendrick, and her boss, engineer Allan Stern, wakes up on an upper floor of a ruined Manhattan skyscraper, thousands of years in the future when civilization has been destroyed. The pair has been in a state of suspended animation for fifteen hundred years. Changes in the earth's features as well as monstrously mutated ""humans"" make it clear they have little hope of survival.

Beyond the Great Oblivion - Allan and Beatrice begin to discover the nature of the catastrophe that has split the Earth open. Rebuilding an airplane, they find a ""bottomless"" chasm near Pittsburgh where a huge portion of the Earth has been torn away to become a second moon. Alan and Beatrice earn the loyalty of the People of this Abyss and lead them from the chasm to New York.

The Afterglow - Allan and Beatrice, with the People of the Abyss, prepare to recolonize the Earth's surface. But first, they must defeat the devolved, cannibalistic survivors who populate Earth's cities.


Excerpt

Dimly, like the daybreak glimmer of a sky long wrapped in fogs, a sign of consciousness began to dawn in the face of the tranced girl. Once more the breath of life began to stir in that full bosom, to which again a vital warmth had on this day of days crept slowly back. And as she lay there, prone upon the dusty floor, her beautiful face buried and shielded in the hollow of her arm, a sigh welled from her lips. Life--life was flowing back again! The miracle of miracles was growing to reality. Faintly now she breathed; vaguely her heart began to throb once more. She stirred. She moaned, still for the moment powerless to cast off wholly the enshrouding incubus of that tremendous, dreamless sleep. Then her hands closed. The finely tapered fingers tangled themselves in the masses of thick, luxuriant hair which lay outspread all over and about her. The eyelids trembled. And, a moment later, Beatrice Kendrick was sitting up, dazed and utterly uncomprehending, peering about her at the strangest vision which since the world began had ever been the lot of any human creature to behold--the vision of a place transformed beyond all power of the intellect to understand. For of the room which she remembered, which had been her last sight when (so long, so very long, ago) her eyes had closed with that sudden and unconquerable drowsiness, of that room, I say, remained only walls, ceiling, floor of rust-red steel and crumbling cement. Quite gone was all the plaster, as by magic. Here or there a heap of whitish dust betrayed where some of its detritus still lay. Gone was every picture, chart, and map--which--but an hour since, it seemed to her--had decked this office of Allan Stern, consulting engineer, this aerie up in the forty-eighth story of the Metropolitan Tower.

Copyright © 1912 by George Allan England


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Darkness and Dawn

- sdlotu
  (11/17/2021)

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