Dispatches from Area X: an interview with Jeff VanderMeer

UPDATE: A splendid omnibus edition of the trilogy has just been released. Check it out (along with a bunch of other great content) at Jeff’s page.

Very few book series have emerged to hit as hard this millennium as Jeff VanderMeer’s Southern Reach trilogy- it’s tempting to call them a smash, or something as trite, but I find sledgehammer imagery lacking. As each book- Annihilation, Authority, and Acceptance– was released, I was reminded of the menacing felines waiting for an eponymous “Martin” to come. If the tidbits of Jeff’s future projects bear fruit like the Southern Reach’s glorious fragments did, then Martin will be a big boy indeed.

Which is perfect, as far as I am concerned, though I will admit to being a bit nervous. Jaded reader that I am, one of the few times I have been genuinely shocked when reading a book was in one of his earlier works, Shriek, at a sudden character death. Shan’t spoil it, darlings. Since then I’ve had a chance to inure myself to the likelihood of fungal death or ursine murder in Jeff’s zone of influence, but one day I woke up and the Southern Reach’s Area X had manifested itself in my own goddamned front yard.

A perfect time to interview Jeff VanderMeer, I thought! Enjoy the slideshow, kids.

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