Has the World Ended Yet?: Stories
October 3, 2017
312 PAGES | ISBN 978-1-928088-44-8
*Longlisted for the 2018 Sunburst Awards for the story "Casual Miracles"*
In Has the World Ended Yet? we start with retired superheroes living in a soulless suburbia where everyone gets lost trying to get home. Then the angels start to fall from the sky. Is it Armageddon? And do we want the world to end or not?
In a series of linked short stories Peter Darbyshire weaves together superheroes, ghosts, the undead, a hired hitman, the Cold War, the Rapture and avenging angels in a Twilight Zone–style collection that is riveting and human. We follow characters that are identifiable through situations that are unreal, through a technicolour landscape we are all familiar with. The end of the world is not what we expect, what any of Darbyshire’s characters expect and may not really be happening at all. But should it?
Has the World Ended Yet? (Alli Vail, Reading Writers Fest, 08/02/2018)
"In Peter Darbyshire’s book of short stories, the world has definitely ended or is ending, although it has ended differently and on a variety of scales per story. Sometimes it’s catastrophic for everybody, sometimes just a couple of city blocks frozen in time. He also places a couple of the stories right in hell and told from the demon’s perspective, which, as you can guess, is a little bit skewed. In Darbyshire’s fiction, the world and the people in it are somehow us and familiar and somehow not. Superheroes have to retire, angels are probably not that great, and everybody is fully aware that marketing is evil. And models are too. They still don’t eat anything. Except other people."
2017: The Books What I Done Read This Year (Corey Redekop, Corey Redekop, 01/01/2018)
"An off-kilter, phantasmagorical treat. Darbyshire delights in mashing pop-culture genres together, exposing profound truths beneath classic tropes in ways at once hilarious, weird, and heart-breaking. Any collection that has H.P. Lovecraft's legendary god Cthulhu working for a temp agency gets an automatic pass from me."
Book review: Has the World Ended Yet? by Peter Darbyshire (Stuart Derdeyn, Vancouver Sun, 23/11/2017)
"But in the tradition of writers such as Neil Gaiman, Darbyshire knows how to keep the action moving so you can comfortably bounce around the story with no particular place to go, frequently laughing out loud at the descriptions. The end, it turns out, is meaningless.But in the tradition of writers such as Neil Gaiman, Darbyshire knows how to keep the action moving so you can comfortably bounce around the story with no particular place to go, frequently laughing out loud at the descriptions. The end, it turns out, is meaningless."
Has the World Ended Yet? (Publishers Weekly, 20/11/2017)
"Darbyshire delights in mashing pop-culture genres together, exposing profound truths beneath classic tropes in ways at once hilarious, weird, and heart-breaking."
Has the World Ended Yet? (August C. Bourré, Quill & Quire, 16/11/2017)
"Each of these pieces is bleak in tone and absurd on its face, but Darbyshire imbues them with unexpected emotional complexity and moral ambiguity."
95 must-read books from 2017, as recommended by you (CBC Books, 05/01/2018)
"This collection of linked short stories includes retired superheroes living in a soulless suburbia where everyone gets lost trying to get home."
"Halloween Special: Watching the World End with Peter Darbyshire" (Open Book, 31/10/2017)
"The linked stories feature superheroes, zombies, ghosts, and many equally strange human counterparts in Twilight Zone-esque tales. Even in the midst of deeply bizarre situations, Darbyshire's characters are vibrantly real and achingly relatable, as he creates the most human of moments even as humanity faces its possible end."
Beautiful Books: Has the World Ended Yet? (Michel Vrana, All Lit Up, 01/11/2017)
"Conveying the awesome strangeness of these stories is the striking cover art by designer extraordinaire Michel Vrana who shares with us the process and inspiration behind his cover design."
"Most Anticipated: Our Fall 2017 Fiction Preview" (Kerry Clare, 49th Shelf, 07/10/2017)
"Award-winner Peter Darbyshire’s new book is Has the World Ended Yet? (October), which begins with retired superheroes in a soulless suburbia . . . and then angels start to fall from the sky."
Top Picks for October 2017 (Loan Stars, 09/08/2017)
Peter Darbyshire's Has the World Ended Yet?: Stories makes the top ten picks on Loan Stars for October 2017.
Peter Darbyshire’s work has appeared in publications across North America. His novel Please won the KM Hunter Artist Award for Literature and the ReLit Award for Best Novel, and was featured on CTV. His novel The Warhol Gang received rave reviews across Canada and generally disturbed people. He also publishes a series of spec-fic novels under the alias Peter Roman. Darbyshire lives in a safehouse outside Vancouver.