If you are a dedicated reader of this fine technology blog you surely are aware that I am always reading a book. From history to science to tech to biography to Star Trek and science fiction in general I always have a trusty book on my night stand.
With this in mind I decided that it would be pretty cool to take a few moments to mention my book reads right here – on this very blog. I must do it here because I do not have the energy or time to start another blog! I understand if you want to skip these book mentions & reviews but forgive me – I need to get it out of my system.
This evening I finish a pure joy of a book, “Planet of the Apes – Tales From The Forbidden Zone”. This is a collection of 16 short stories from the Apes universe.
Why is this book so much fun? Well I grew up fascinated by the Planet of the Apes universe. Only second to Star Trek did the Apes universe capture my imagination (as it still does). Also you must understand Planet of the Apes books are actually quite a rare thing. This year there are several books being released, with this being the first and only original one. This collection of stories is such fun because the sheer range of the tales here are a sight to behold.
Apes Stories Of All Kinds Abound
There are side-stories such as John Jackson Miller’s “Murders’ Row” with its intriguing perspective on Escape From The Planet Of The Apes, tales that delve into the back-stories of classic character such as Anderson and co-author Sam Knight’s “Of Monsters And Men”, explorations of Ape culture such as the tales written by Greg Cox and co-editor Handley, and stories that present new additions to the mythology such as Keyes’ tale which also takes readers beyond the usual North American setting of the franchise. There are stories that fill-in plot holes such as Ty Templeton’s story that sets up the aforementioned film Escape or that act as sequels such as Dayton Ward’s “Message In A Bottle” that helps to start wrapping up the canceled 1970s live-action TV series (which I still enjoy). There’s even room for some poignant tales such as Bob Mayer’s “what if?” sequel to the 1968 film or co-editor Beard’s epic “Silenced” that will have you looking at parts of the series in a whole new light.
Perhaps more than the individual stories is the sheer quality of the overall product. Anthologies, by the nature of them being a hodgepodge of different authors, tend to be hit and miss with some stories being better than others. There are exceptions to almost every rule and this proves to be such as case as there isn’t a single miss in the entire collection. Every single story here presents its own intriguing (and sometimes knowingly contradictory) take on Planet Of The Apes as we know it with always intriguing results.
Good short fiction always leaves you begging for more and this collection is full of such tales.
Tales From The Forbidden Zone is among the rarest species of anthologies. That’s not just because it finally presents a collection of Planet Of The Apes short fiction but because of the sheer quality of the tales it presents. It is a book that expands and explores the Planet of the Apes franchise in new and exciting ways, sometimes outside the box but it never ceases to be interesting. So if you are one of those with even a modicum of interest in classic Apes, this is an anthology for you.
I went Ape for this book and if you – like me fondly recall the Apes movies & TV series you will GO APE for it as well!