A Harbinger’s Tale, by Dale Reierson:
If God asked you to be the Harbinger of the Apocalypse … would you do it? This is the question posed to both narrator and reader alike as both are taken on an original and refreshingly unpredictable fast-track into Armageddon and beyond.
On his eighth birthday, the narrator is blessed (or cursed, depending on your point of view) with the symbols of the Seven Seals of the Apocalypse on his body.
Is the narrator suffering from some kind of mental illness, brought on by the trauma of his parents’ deaths, followed by the horrific circumstances of his grandmother’s death and the nightmare of the foster home … or is he exactly who and what he claims to be?
A disaster on the moon results in calamity on earth, along with natural disasters, global warming on an extreme scale, entire nations wiped out. Survivors take refuge in an orbital space station, only to fall foul of the “have-nots” of the world. The cities that still stand and are still inhabited, then reform and reinforce themselves into “hives”, with the remaining factions of humanity clinging on to existence and a semblance of order. Mankind seems to finally have it locked down tight until the breaking of another seal unleashes demons and zombies.
This is a ferocious, thought-provoking, and darkly comic horror story, told with a dry, sarcastic wit.
Excellent book for discussion in reading groups.
As the song goes: don’t fear the reaper!
I also recommend by the same author:
Three Days Without Grace:
With similar themes of religion and horror as the author covered in his novel: A Harbinger’s Tale, this story focuses on the crucifixion and resurrection, retold from the point of view of mankind’s greatest enemy as he attempts to plunge the world into darkness and chaos.
A well-written short story about good ultimately triumphing over evil.