Everything Feels Like the End of the World by Else Fitzgerald
8 August 2022
Everything Feels Like the End of the World (published by Allen & Unwin, 2 August 2022), by Mornington Peninsula based Australian writer Else Fitzgerald, seems like a book title for the times some days.
Winner of the 2019 Richell Prize for emerging writers, Fitzgerald written a collection of short stories, exploring a number of chilling dystopian futures for Australia, set both in the near and distant future:
Each story is anchored, at its heart, in what it means to be human: grief, loss, pain and love. A young woman is faced with a difficult choice about her pregnancy in a community ravaged by doubt. An engineer working on a solar shield protecting the Earth shares memories of their lover with an AI companion. Two archivists must decide what is worth saving when the world is flooded by rising sea levels. In a heavily policed state that preferences the human and punishes the different, a mother gives herself up to save her transgenic child.
Nanci Nott, writing for Artshub, describes Everything Feels Like the End of the World as an engaging collection of speculative short fictions:
Each tale is intensely personal, vibrant with specificity, and written with precision. Characters don’t just exist within their settings; entire worlds inhabit these characters. A master of minutiae and memory, Fitzgerald creates an intricate universe of befores-and-afters, sacrifices and consequences, mundane joys and darkest days.
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