Go-Go Girls of the Apocalypse

Go-Go Girls of the Apocalypse

by Victor Gischler


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Mortimer Tate was a recently divorced insurance salesman when he holed up in a cave on top of a mountain in Tennessee and rode out the end of the world. Go-Go Girls of the Apocalypse begins nine years later, when he emerges into a bizarre landscape filled with hollow reminders of an America that no longer exists. The highways are lined with abandoned automobiles; electricity is generated by indentured servants pedaling stationary bicycles. What little civilization remains revolves around Joey Armageddon's Sassy A-Go-Go strip clubs, where the beer is cold, the lap dancers are hot, and the bouncers are armed with M16s.

Accompanied by his cowboy sidekick Buffalo Bill, the gorgeous stripper Sheila, and the mountain man Ted, Mortimer journeys to the lost city of Atlanta — and a showdown that might determine the fate of humanity.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781416552253
Publisher: Touchstone
Publication date: 07/08/2008
Edition description: Original
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 393,101
Product dimensions: 5.25(w) x 8.00(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Victor Gischler is a former English professor and the author of Gun Monkeys, The Pistol Poets, Suicide Squeeze, and Shotgun Opera.

Read an Excerpt


This is how Mortimer Tate ended up killing the first three human beings he'd laid eyes on in nearly a decade:

A wreath of cloud lay smooth and still about the top of the mountain like bacon grease gone cold and white in a deep, black frying pan. The top halves of evergreens poked through the cloud, frosted from last night's snow. The final days of winter, not too cold — Mortimer Tate estimated maybe thirty degrees. The thermometer had burst in the third year, that most bitter winter when it had gotten to twenty below or more. The thermometer had been made in America by a small company in Ohio.

Nothing was made to last anymore, Mortimer's dad had been fond of saying.

Mortimer sat at the window of the cabin, which had been built directly in front of the cave. The cave stretched back deep into the mountain. Mortimer sipped tea brewed from ginseng and tree bark he collected and dried himself. The coffee had run out the first year. So many things had run out that first year.

Mortimer watched the men come up the mountain, had seen them rise up through the mist and had blinked at them, thinking he'd cracked up at last. But they were real, rifles in front of them, not trying too carefully for stealth, but neither shouting nor taking the mountain for granted.

He considered going back into the cave to the gun locker, maybe getting the twelve-gauge or even something deadlier, but then he'd lose sight of the men and he didn't want to emerge from the cave again only to find they'd gone or had spotted the cabin. And anyway he had the police special in the pocket of his army-surplus parka. That should be enough. He wanted to talk, not shoot, but of course he had to be careful.

He didn't figure they'd seen the cabin, obscured as it was by the pines and two months' snow. It was possible he could sit right there, and the men would pass by and never be seen again. Nobody had been up this far before, at least nobody Mortimer had seen. Maybe they'd hunted the game out farther down and were up after meat. Mortimer himself had killed a big buck three weeks ago and had eaten venison four nights in a row before drying out the rest for jerky.

Goddamn, he was sick of jerky.

I'm stalling, Mortimer thought. He didn't want the men to pass without speaking to them. Now that he saw them, he was desperate to find out, get news of the world below. But he was afraid too. There were three of them.

He could call out to them right now and be safe holed up in the cabin. They couldn't get at him there. Not even if all three came at once. They'd have to climb up the rocks and snow and he could pick them off easy with the police special. But then they'd know about the cabin and the cave. They could come back with a dozen or a hundred, and that wouldn't do.

He'd have to slip down the side and try to catch one on the flank, open up a dialogue, and then maybe they could find out about each other. Maybe things were back to normal. The portable radio had devoured all the spare batteries so fast, ran out even before the coffee, but it had all been bad news, and when the last batteries had finally given up the ghost, Mortimer wouldn't have replaced them even if he'd had more. He hadn't been able to stand it, couldn't stomach another minute, the play-by-play of the world shaking itself to pieces.

It had been a long time, and maybe things had stabilized. That was a thought, and it turned into a hope; Mortimer found himself sliding down the incline from the thick plank door of the cabin and ducking into a stand of trees. The leftmost of the men was just on the other side. Mortimer went through quietly, not showing a weapon. Strike up a conversation. Sure. Maybe they'd be happy to see him.

He weaved and ducked among the pines, finally caught sight of the first man, ruddy cheeks, dirty red hair with a red-brown beard. Patched denim pants and work boots, thick corduroy coat, also patched. A red band around one sleeve. He held a deer rifle, bolt action, .308 caliber. Mortimer was so close he could see the rifle was a Remington.

Mortimer had one hand in the pocket of his parka, wrapped around the police special. He raised the other hand in greeting.

"Hey — " Mortimer's own voice surprised and startled him, and he cut off the greeting. Mortimer marveled momentarily at the strange voice, his own voice, how loud and croaky it sounded in the still morning. When was the last time he'd uttered a single syllable? He only pondered it a split second, because the stranger had already turned, big-eyed, mouth a shocked O of surprise, and was bringing the deer rifle around.

"No!" Mortimer threw up his free hand in a "stop" gesture. "Wait!"

But neither of them could wait. The rifle barrel had swung even with Mortimer's belly, and he thrust the police special forward and squeezed the trigger. The shot split the winterscape with a crack, white down exploding from the hole in the parka's pocket. The bullet caught the stranger high in the left side of the chest, a splash of red arcing and spraying and landing around him, harsh and bright in the smooth white terrain.

"Harry!" Another shot whizzed past Mortimer's ear.

Mortimer pulled the revolver, moved sideways among the trees as the other two ran toward him, snow crunching. He huffed breath, loud in his ears, steam billowing from his open mouth, eyes and nose wet from the cold and exertion. He fired once and the two guys slowed into a crouch, one going to a knee and shooting. The shot rent Mortimer's sleeve, more down swirling in his wake. They got up again and ran at Mortimer, who ran back at them, throwing everything into the encounter, howling and jerking the trigger three more times.

Two shots went high. The third took the kneeling shooter in the left eye, which popped and gushed blood and goo and shredded eyeball. His scream cut off in a strangled gulp, and he fell back.

The last stranger turned and ran, and this alarmed Mortimer more than when they'd shot at him. He couldn't let him bring others. He crunched in the snow after him. "Wait!"

They both ran faster.


He didn't wait.

Mortimer fired. The shot caught the fleeing stranger between the shoulder blades. The man's arms flew out, the rifle tumbling into the snow. He fell face forward. Mortimer kept running until he was right up next to the body, dropped to his knees. "Oh, no." He turned the man over, but he was dead. "God damn it."

The first human beings he'd seen in nine years.

"Typical." Copyright © 2008 by Victor Gischler

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Go-Go Girls of the Apocalypse 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 37 reviews.
TBAYFINN More than 1 year ago
loved it really enjoyed it
cmowire on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The first 280 pages or so are great. The last 50 pages or so are a little bit of a letdown.Still, I was entertained simply by the narrative of the first 280 pages. FicusFan's comment about the scene change being usually accomplished by hitting the main character on the back of the head with a frying pan is spot-on. But there's enough points where I giggle over things. Of the fate of the Jack Daniels brewery post-apocalypse. Or the CNN tower.I'd view it as what would happen if the world ended during Burning Man and a bunch of burners were trying to rebuild society. So part of the charm was that when the writer described a bunch of girls in slutty lingerie were beating the crap out of some armed opponents in five seconds flat, I could see that picture. Not everybody can.But the last 50 pages or so. I had stopped reading because it was time for work with a little bit of the book left and was wondering how they were going to finish up the battle in the remaining pages. And what I thought was that we were just getting to the big battle scene. When I got back to reading, I couldn't understand what the heck went on.And therein lies the problem. The writer picked a third person limited perspective. And the main character doesn't actually participate in the big battle for the most part, so that's it. 50 pages later, the story's over. It's not that the writer resorted to deus ex machina, just that it's unsatisfying.The problem, of course, is that the third person limited perspective is really handy to let you get inside the head of a slightly twisted character....Now, the extraneous and utterly silly side detail. I used a Jehovah's Witnesses tract on the end of the world as a bookmark Because one of their people was handing them out while I was reading it. And commented on how the end of the world was something important with global warming and everything. I don't think she quite had time to reason out that there was a girl with an AK-47 on the cover.
FicusFan on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Very shallow book, that isn't redeemed by humor, or the sly commentary on modern life. Cardboard characters, odd, foolish, skeevey settings, not much of a story, and not much happens. Manages to make sex and cannibalism boring. The standard scene changer is to hit the main character on the back of the head with a frying pan. Tiresome. Pacing was off, the big event was still being set up and there was only 50 pages left. I was in horror at the thought of a cliff hanger and a sequel. Don't know about the sequel (which I will skip), but there is no cliff hanger.
dhelmen on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Not great, not even good. Amusingly bad, it was an impulse purchase I regretted before getting it home.
clif_hiker on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this book very much, although it's nothing spectacular in terms of how civilization ends. I liked the characters and the settings, and especially the sly humor, which occasionally made me laugh out loud. I look forward to more in this vein from this author.
copefiend2 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The story of Mortimer and his life after the world collapsed was fantastic. This is a book with adult themes so if you are put off by excessive drinking, graphic violence, and sexual references please do not read this book. Victor Gischler shows off some serious writing skills with this novel. It is a high octane fun ride in the realm of an action movie. Given the type of novel this is a found that the characters development was fairly solid and the story had a nice flow. The real element of fun for me in this book was the very plausible picture Gischler painted of a defeated and downtrodden world. This is not a serious book and can be enjoyed (read through) very quickly. I would highly recommend this book to anyone that enjoys non-stop action, racy humor, and Go-Go girls.
Drewano More than 1 year ago
Part post-apocalyptic survival novel, part dark comedy and part western, ‘Go-Go Girls of the Apocalypse” is a fun and exciting ride through a world ravened by war, natural disasters and economic meltdowns. The characters are quirky, unique and likable and overall this was just a fun book.  I highly recommend it for any who likes action and adventure and is looking for a slight change of pace.
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Sunchan More than 1 year ago
Fun, fun, fun! Non-stop thrill ride through a post-apocalyptic landscape.
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funrunner1977 More than 1 year ago
I absolutely loved this book! I've read a couple books about post-apocalyptic life (Dies the Fire, The Road) and this one was by far my favorite title of that genre. It doesn't compare to the absolute raw nature of the Road, but that's not what this author was going for. Think about it: A society based on strip clubs/whorehouses and alcohol. It's similar to the old west, but different, because those were just a part of the landscape, not the one shining aspect of life after the distruction of the government, decency and most of humanity. The main character, Mortimer Tate, is flawed and ridiculously unprepared for the hard life of world on the outside of his mountain hideaway where he's stayed for the past nine years in relative peace and quiet. I'm not going into the plot like others have done in their reviews, but the "ultimate quest" that he goes on is also a personal journey, not some far-fetched crusade as others have painted it. Oh, by the way, it's a book. If something extraordinary didn't happen in it, it wouldn't be worth reading.
shadedshadow More than 1 year ago
Very on the edge! A great book full of memorable characters. It has many twists & is just a very easy & good read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago