Otto Boteman suffers a massive heart attack and wakes up in a strange, jeweled city filled with beautiful people, a mesmerizing sky defying all physics, and what looks suspiciously like his first car. Seeking answers, Otto has a disturbing encounter with a murdered childhood friend and is assured by some kind of angel bureaucrat that this is Heaven, but God is not here so don’t bother looking. No God? Can’t be Heaven, then, despite the best danishes he’s ever eaten and residence in a pretty nice condo (replete with tailored suits and HBO). Maybe he’s not even dead, just comatose. But then he meets Claudia, a 5th Century beauty running an Irish pub, who tells him about a group of malcontents building a rocket ship in the far desert. Their mission? Find God.
So begins Otto’s journey across a fabulous world peopled with the likes of Doc Holliday, Prester John, and a Mongol horde led by an accountant from West Kankakee, Illinois. Drawing the wrath of a frenzied, suit-wearing army of angels (or demons, can’t tell), Otto discovers that launching the ship just might end the eternal struggle between good and evil.
The Twin Towers are still smoldering when those odd little anthrax letters show up, killing a few people here and there. Some nutcase, everyone thinks, but it’s not – it’s a setup, a precursor to a massive biological attack that leaves the Northeast a quarantined wasteland.
Campus policeman John Rashkil, trapped inside the Zone, chooses to keep doing his job, adding judge and executioner to his resume. He builds a jury-rigged life from what he can salvage and tries to help his teenage son survive this new, Byzantine America.
But a growing sense of futility shatters his confidence, and he is unprepared when a rabble army seeks to break quarantine and pour into the uninfected lands.
Based on an Irish legend of the same name, Partholon is a brutal look at how the just and the civilized respond to anarchy.
Ten tales of the mundane, of a universe askew, where things are slightly off:
1. The Last Man in the World Explains All: double check your math.
2. Ghost Woods: shot an arrow into the air, and where it landed...
3. Invisibility: don't attract attention. Just don't.
4. Not With a Bang: this is how the world ends.
5. Do-Over: the problem with time travel is you.
6. An Unfortunate Choice of Words: Aliens. Man, they just don't get it.
7. The World Without Souls: not the most pleasant of places.
8. Reparations: my, how things change.
9. Inherit the Earth: a race, or an idea?
10. An Inappropriate Response: Humans. Man, they just don't get it.
Real vampires. Tasteful dismemberments. And delightful shivers, from ten old-fashioned horror stories: