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Love in the time of the Apocalypse Kindle Edition

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Length: 182 pages

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Greg's first novel, Love in the Time of the Apocalypse is loosely based on Gabriel Garcia Marquez's novel, Love in the Time of Cholera with a bit of Voltaire's Candide, Swift's Gulliver's Travels and a bit of Poe thrown in for added spice.Other authors who have most influenced the formation of this novel include Salmon Rushdie, Umberto Eco, and Sheri Holman. These authors are best known for their macabre themes and their exploration of magic realism. Magic realism is a literary style that interweaves unreal elements in a conventional environment.To learn more about the evolution of this novel, and other projects Greg is working on, please visit gregblecha.com or contact him at build_mail_adv("","greg","gregblecha","com","").

Product Details

  • File Size: 481 KB
  • Print Length: 182 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: iUniverse (February 15, 2005)
  • Publication Date: February 15, 2005
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0012KW5OQ
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,652,586 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

I am a software architect living in southern Florida with my wife and some grown children (the exact number of grown children living at home fluctuates). We also have a cat. I toy frequently with the notion of getting a ball python, but am put off by a fear of commitment. There is a pond behind our house, affectionately and for marketing purposes referred to as a "lake". The lake brings all sorts of urban wildlife into our backyard, such as hawks, turkey vultures, egrets, turtles and the occasional alligator. Every morning I engage in "toad rescue" and pull toads and other critters out of the pool. Recently I fished out a land crab, who was lording it up at the bottom of the pool and was not happy at the extrication.

I am presently working on a dissertation. I am enrolled in the Computer Information Systems (CIS) doctoral program at Nova Southeastern University. I am living proof you can still have "I didn't do my homework" and "I didn't study for the final" nightmares even in middle age.

Writing

I've always wanted to be a writer. In 1985 I wrote my first novel, which I titled "Blonde Sunrise". I started on a notepad, but then graduated to typewriter, and finally moved to an Apple Macintosh. A few years later I wrote a play, in the style of Noel Coward, called "Jupiter Inn". Both are now lost to antiquity (not Noel Coward - he still lives on, thankfully). I joined a writing community in Northern California, and submitted a few short stories to our publication called "The Mindprint Review". Then, like a virus, the urge to write went dormant for almost two decades.

In 2003 my future wife and youngest son encouraged me to "write something" following a trip to Florida. I had been reading Salmon Rushdie and Umberto Eco at the time, so "writing something" meant "writing something that borders on the absurd". Thus was born Love in the Time of the Apocalypse, which I wrote on spiral-bound notebooks at first, but then transferred to the computer whenever I had written thirty pages or more. I finished Apocalypse in early 2005, and in the process of shopping it around to agents and editors I received around 30 of the following:

I certainly can't blame anyone for their lack of enthusiasm. To me, Apocalypse is a good read but a hard sell, although there are a few who think I'm only half-right in this assessment.

Dear Author:

Thank you for your submission. Unfortunately, I was not sufficiently enthusiastic to feel I'd be the right agent for your work.

I never found a good agent and publisher. I self-published Apocalypse through iUniverse and set my sights on writing my next book, which I had begun in the winter of 2004. Seven years and several re-writes later, I am again ready to publish a novel through iUniverse. I gave no consideration to finding an agent or a publisher (this time it was I who wasn't sufficiently enthusiastic). This second novel is titled The Land of Magical Thinking.

I'm already formulating the plot for my third book, which I am committed to completing in fewer than seven years. The book will incorporate elements of magic realism and meta-fiction like Apocalypse and Magical Thinking.

What I'm Looking for as a Writer

The biggest "literary thrill" I'd ever received is when the book club I belonged to chose Apocalypse as their monthly book selection. I had a chance to talk to my fellow book club members about why I chose a particular story line or plot element. The book club members made me feel like a craftsman.

I don't know if I'll get a shot at that again, but for just one time, it was worth it.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
The first word that comes to mind in describing Gregory Blecha's Love in the Time of the Apocalypse is unique. Surreal and farcical on the one hand, satirical and poignant on the other, this novel follows its own drum of apocalyptic imaginings. If you have any preconceived notions about where this story will take you, you might as well leave them at the door, as Blecha will undoubtedly surprise you one way or another. This isn't Left Behind, nor is it a soporific recitation of man's ills in a hopelessly maudlin, post-apocalyptic setting. The writing is sharp and oftentimes pointedly funny, and no Four Horsemen come plodding in to overshadow the main character's personable manner of dealing with monumental change.

Economic collapse has led to the disintegration of American society into several radical spheres: Southern agrarians, Pentecostals aligned with the Aryan Nation, a welfare queen system in the east, eco-terrorists running amuck, etc. It's a mess, but life isn't all that bad for our protagonist, Bryan. When we meet him, he's enjoying a vacation with his girlfriend Char and some friends at an Amish casino in Las Vegas (yes, the Amish staff are rather ichthyne in appearance thanks to some unbridled genetic experimentation, but try not to stare). Bryan has no idea that he's about to become one of the most wanted men in what is left of America. In the wake of a spat with his girlfriend, he finds himself kidnapped by the Aryan Nation/Church of the Creator; here, he first learns of his possible supposed importance, but he can't figure out what is really going on. Even the Feds are after him, launching an attack on his captors which allows him to escape across a river.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Jeffrey Leach HALL OF FAME on July 31, 2005
Format: Paperback
A casino owned and operated by the Amish? The Mormons operating a sort of underground railroad for couples wanting to have children? Religious organizations joining forces with far right wing paramilitary units? What's going on here? Why, nothing more than an America caught up in the throes of the apocalypse (four horsemen optional), that's what! I went into Gregory Blecha's "Love in the Time of the Apocalypse" expecting a love story set amidst the incandescent blooms of mushroom clouds. At the very least, I thought I'd see a couple snuggling as a killer virus wiped out most of the human race. Perhaps a bout of footsie as an asteroid races toward a rendezvous with our planet? How about a young girl staring at her beau with doe eyes as a horde of flesh eating zombies tear them and the rest of the human race to pieces? Nope, Blecha's book is none of these things. The apocalypse we see here is more down to earth and less chaotic than what we would think, yet still full of the sort of surrealism one would expect to see at the end of the world. It's an apocalypse as Luis Bunuel might imagine it.

We come into the novel with an introduction to Bryan, the protagonist of the story, as he and his girlfriend Char revel in the tawdry accommodations that only Las Vegas can provide. Then again, this isn't Sin City as your parents experienced it. The Amish do indeed run a casino, loaded with gambling devices that run without the aid of electricity, as well as a hotel with the best amenities the nineteenth century has to offer. Problem is, it's the twenty-first century. Oh well. The food is good, the beds are comfortable, and Bryan and his gal (along with a few friends) can always motorbike up the road to see the Hoover Dam in operation.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Asa C. Page on August 2, 2010
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is a hard book to review because hiding deep amid the badly formatted, too stream of conscious, grammar error spattered prose are the bones of a really good story.

Basically, this looks like a rough draft by a creative person who has a very detailed and intense vision of the world he wants to portray, but no technical writing experience.

So, for the good bits: The main character is quite appealing. The different groups we run into over the course of the book are amusing and well drawn. Bits and pieces of the story are engrossing enough to overcome the fact that it looks like it was written by an ESL student.

The moderate bits: The main character is amazingly detached from what is going on around him. He eventually becomes a bit more involved, but it never feels like anything happening in the book really touches him. Potentially this makes sense given the ending of the book, but since it's never actually spelled out, it's not possible to decide if it's an intentional effect, or just mediocre writing.

For the bad bits: It's physically hard to read. You take one look at it and wonder if anyone (including the author) ever edited it. The story is confusing, with an ending so far out in left field that not only are none of the readers expecting it, but you also get the sense the author might have been a bit surprised to see it end that way, too. The love story, which, given the title should have been more central to the plot, may have been cribbed directly from the Odyssey.

It's .99 on the Kindle store, and for that price I'd say it's worth the buy. It's a short little thing, probably about 250 pages in book format, so it's a quick read. For taking to the beach or killing an afternoon, it's worth the price.
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