Engine Summer - John Crowley Fey, muted, beautiful. The story of Rush-that-speaks is a bildungsroman that will haunt you long after you have read the last page. The story follows the charming and inquisitive Rush as he grows up in his enclave of 'True Speakers', one of the few groups of humanity left after an apocalypse has destroyed most of civilization. It then follows him as he ventures out into the world to see what strangeness it may offer and in the hopes of finding his lost love.

Don't expect to find the mutant zombies or flesh-eating reavers of many other post-apocalyptic stories. Instead prepare to see with Rush the melancholy remnants of our society, given new strangeness and wonder when viewed through his eyes. Tied to this are the strange people we meet; those who survived the cataclysm and continued to live their lives, forever changed by the harsh reality of the end of civilization.

The ways in which these groups choose to meet the challenges presented by this world mark each of them in significant ways, and as Rush witnesses these things he is changed by them, becoming both more, and less, than he was when he started his journey.

This is one of my very favourites by Crowley (I seem to prefer his early work to his later) and I highly recommend it to any and all.

Edit: June 12/12 Upon reflection I think I have to give this one five stars.