An original story anthology and mighty hymn to a coming apocalypse by 14 leading horror writers, gathered here by inspired editor Winter (Prime Evil, 1988, etc). Each decade of the 20th century is assigned to a writer or writers (in two cases they work in tandem) who evoke the particular madness of that decade as it contributes to a prophecy for the next century. Winter tells us that the end of the present millennium, now upon us, is ``a time of revelation,'' as in the apocalyptic revelations of St. John. He has spent seven years assembling this book, looking for genuinely original writing that rises above genre clichÇs, and he has largely achieved his objective. Clive Barker, in top form, offers two works: the introductory ``Chiliad: A Meditation—Men and Sin,'' about the thousand years of guilt leading up to this century; and the anthology's wrap-up short novel, ``Chiliad: A Moment at the River's Heart,'' a parable about guilt that rises magnificently above genre. In Joe R. Lansdale's ``The Big Blow,'' black boxer Jack Johnson fights for his life against the toughest white man he's ever met, while a wave as big as the Great Wall of China hits Galveston. In F. Paul Wilson's ``Aryans and Absinthe,'' a Jewish bookseller in Berlin in 1923 has an absinthe hallucination, foresees the death camps, and attempts to assassinate Hitler. Poppy Z. Brite and Christa Faust offer the immensely stylish, crystalline ``Triads,'' featuring two boys sold to a Peking Opera troupe who later, going go out into life as women, get mixed up with Chinese mafia/revolutionaries and witness the Japanese bombing of Shanghai. Other big names on hand include, among others, Whitley Strieber, Charles Grant, and Ramsey Campbell. Astute, entertaining mainstream fantasy.
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