A Long Time Until Now by Michael Z. Williamson, on sale now!

Michael Z. Williamson’s new book, A Long Time Until Now is now available. Today a bunch of us are helping spread the word.


I haven’t had a chance to read it yet, but I really enjoy Mad Mike’s stuff. Normally when a Book Bomb is coming up I try to notify people in advance to mark their calender, but I messed up and forgot. I know I just did a BB last week and I only try to push one of these a month, but Mike is a talented author, and a friend, and I’d really encourage everyone to check this out.

Taught my first creative writing class last night
Charity to check out, EOD Warrior Foundation

48 thoughts on “A Long Time Until Now by Michael Z. Williamson, on sale now!”

        1. Now I’m thinking… seeds! I should have said seeds!

          You know… “list five things” for the contest is really restricting.

          Listing what I can *carry* on my own back would have been better, starting with “a really good framed hiking back-pack” or possibly “a man in his prime with super survival skills.”

  1. I advise the fellow followers of this barbaric forum to do their utmost to skip this book. The writer, one mad mike, has a near ocd levels of attention to detail which includes going as far as testing the (extremely limited) nutrition possibilities available on his own body (in other words, in real life for a month? I’m sure it was more than a week but not sure the total length of his experiment) and actually checking his facts with real, patriarchal scientists.
    He doesn’t even give us the scenes where imperialistic evil Murricans oppress poor, civilized Roman legionares.

    Sorry guys, my intent was to barf a useless rant or thirteen for your entertainment but this one is too good (albeit weirdly niche and very realistic) book to keep barfing too long.
    Check it out if you have the spare funds!

    1. Sigh… forum software. Ate my sarcasm tags. Add your own to the beginning and after Roman legionnaires

      1. Proper sarcasm tags need extra spaces, to get past software that ( wisely ) strips html formatting from posts.

    2. I had a similar impulse.

      Seriously, there are sample chapters up on the website. Go read them.

  2. Read the book this weekend. I love Michael’s work, this was not his best, but overall very good. Seemed like a build up to a series of novels with the potential to really take off. To me the book started reasonably quick, got bogged down in the middle, and then picked up towards the end. The character development was on target but Cassie’s character could have had a little more background to explain why she had major man problems. Michael did a great job with the rest of the characters and I really liked how he ended the story. 4.5 out of 5 stars.

    1. I’m in the same boat. I’ve loved his other books, but wasn’t as happy with this one. Cassie was very one-sided and in spite of the slight change at the end never seemed to develop like the others did.

  3. Before I bought this book, I’d only ever read one of his before, and gave up 100 pages into it. While I at least finished this book, I didn’t particularly enjoy it.

    I don’t know. To me, it seemed like there was too much how-to manual in it, and not enough story.

    Maybe I just don’t like his style of writing? After all, Freehold seems real popular, and that’s the one I couldn’t bring myself to finish.

  4. Book’s been available in final format since April 16, and the eARC was out a couple of months before that. I would agree perhaps not Mike’s best work ever, but still and all a good solid read with great attention to detail and a new and interesting take on an old SF standby.
    Note for those on a tight budget: you can purchase the entire monthly Baen issue as e-books for 18 bucks right up until the 15th of the month prior to official release. Always at least half a dozen books with a mix between new releases and the PB followup publications. Of course it’s Baen so lots of icky milSF, adventure, fighting, probably nothing any right thinking SJW would have an interest in.

  5. I thought it was pretty good. I was very amused (and eventually a little annoyed) by the fact that the feminist character literally spent the entire time convinced that her male comrades were going to lose control and render her unto sexual bondage for the rest of her life.

    1. I found that character annoying but only because I met so many of those useless pieces of shit while I was in the military.

      The job (hell, combat) had NOTHING on the stresses created by those idiots.

      1. I’m more than a little disturbed by the fact that such people really exist.

        I’m really starting to lean towards Tom Kratman’s notion that the military really isn’t the place for women. Not in a world where feminist hysterics are mainstream, and maybe not otherwise.

        1. Better to say that the military isn’t a place for PEOPLE of that…caliber.

          While I can certainly relate horror stories of those types, male and female, I can also provide instances of women I’d happily serve with.

          They were simply a tiny, tiny minority during my time.

          The military needs to revert back to a merit system and quals that haven’t been reduced/dumbed down to allow for EO and AA.

          It’s ludicrous to expect others to provide the same amount of respect for a time-in salty chief to a 25 year-old female one.

          The mutterings about promotions being based on skin color more than quals and scores were never-ending.

          1. I think it was Blackfive ( Burden? Blackfive.com) made a good point related to the issue in that it’s necessary to have heroes and a history and a culture and to a large extent women do not. Certainly when I was in the Air Force (stop laughing) it seemed to me that a whole lot of training was aimed in inculcating a military mindset. No, I won’t argue for women in the infantry, but the institutionalized and enforced “women must not bleed” ethos undermined the way female recruits viewed themselves. Sure, male Airmen were no more likely to bleed than female ones, but there’s a difference up there in your head and it’s an important one.

            Kratman said much the same, actually, but several times more extreme (shocking, I know).

            You can’t train the necessary mindset while simultaneously treating females like the ladies auxiliary.

          2. That isn’t my only reason. Having sexual tension between officers and enlisted is a *big fucking problem*. And fit men and women in their 20s are going to have plenty of sexual tension, especially in an adrenalized environment like the military.

            The original definition of sexual harassment referred to people in a position of authority offering bonuses and inducements – or alternatively, threats – in return for sexual favors from their subordinates.

            In a military context, where the prevailing culture is very much along the lines of “you must obey the orders of your superior officers”, this is a recipe for disaster.

            Hence the explosion of sexual harassment charges in the military.

  6. I’m a huge fan of Freehold, so bought this book when I saw it on Kindle. I haven’t finished yet (about 70%) of the way through, but my thoughts so far are:

    * It’s a page-turner. Michael Z. Williamson is a consummate storyteller and A Long Time Until Now takes the fantastic (time travel) and explores it in a believable and interesting way. It reminds me of Michael Crichton at his best.

    * If you like stories about survival, you’ll love this book. It goes into the nuts and bolts of how to survive the Stone Age in a very credible and seemingly well-researched way. Jack London would have been proud to write a book like this.

    * This is a bit different from typical military sci fi fare. It has violence and military personnel in it, but it’s not really about violence or the military. It’s about a group of modern-day humans suddenly cast back to prehistoric times, and how they react and adapt.

    * A lesser writer would have written something like The US Army versus The Flintstones. Williamson writes like it’s from personal experience. He makes the characters and plot feel real. They’re not heroic super-soldiers, they’re believable individuals each with their own strengths, weaknesses and personalities.

    You could easily imagine this book being turned into a high quality television series, like the early seasons of Lost. I give it two thumbs up.

    1. I totally agree with you Steve. I thought it was a great book and really emphasized the weaknesses and strengths of each character. My wife has Graves Disease and the symptoms and issues that Alexander displayed were right on. This made her character more believable to me. Not only that but my own doctor has been nagging at me to go on this new fangled Paleolithic diet. He explained that it’s better for us to eat the natural meats and nuts and berries etc… like the cave men ate. I told him “So you think that a diet that was used by people who had a life expectancy of 40 years is a good idea huh?” I now have a new doctor.

      1. The lifespan was due to other factors, not diet. Now that we have knocked out infectious diseases, death by wild animals, etc. our modern unnatural pathetic diets have time to kill us via heart disease, etc.

  7. Reflecting over his Freehold series, Michael Z Williamson has a very nice touch with small unit dynamics and teams which work on an intuitive or non-hierarchical model.

    Obviously there will always be a hierarchy if society exists and a human is in any society, but it tends to be rather far off or abstract. When it isn’t abstract, it is usually going to negatively impact the operation. This promotes a setting where individual characters have more motive force and initiative can payout high dividends.

  8. Made the mistake of reading the sample chapters. Now I have to buy it, and I’m already over my book budget for the week…

  9. I read the eARC. ‘Twas enjoyable, ’twas.

    Left my review there (baenebooks.com), this Kindle ain’t big on copy ‘n paste.

  10. I’m one of those Baen eARC folks and picked up this book the day I discovered it was available (as I do for anything by Mr. Williamson, Ringo, or Correia plus a few others). Books by these authors are an addiction to me, and I am helplessly compelled to buy the stories and escape into those universes for as long as I can.

    I actually liked this one quite a bit. Mr. Williamson moved out of his normal writing zone with this story, and I imagine he challenged himself somewhat to go beyond the Freehold universe. As a reader I appreciate being along on that ride. It has been a blast to see his writing develop over the years.

  11. It’s in my cart on Amazon. Just finished Steve Diamond’s Residue so have a TON of stuff to read before I go to this one. Oh and btw, Residue was a great read.

  12. Bought it a few days ago, and devoured it in one sitting. A very good book IMHO, his protagonists are very believable and the situation was well thought out. Recommended. No book bomb needed here, MZW is on my buy list.

  13. Off topic question:

    Does tonight’s course start at 6:00 PM Mountain?

    Weber’s website doesn’t’ say.

  14. I thought it very different from his other works. That said, I really enjoyed it. I have a thing for displaced in time stories and this work covered some new ground in that sub-genre. Different in tone/style from the Freehold universe books, but well worth the read.

  15. Bought the eARC. Liked the US gov’s handling of secrecy after the fact, wished more books would use that easy threat ( as I recall Larry used as well ) to encourage needed STFU.

  16. OK because this is a Book Bomb I will buy it from Amazon rather than Baen. I would have gotten around to it in time but my reading queue is full at the moment

    Met Mike at ICON quite a few years ago and always look forward to his new books

  17. A decent book, good for about the first 2/3rd or 3/4 of the book. After the last group joins the mix, the story seemed to suffer. I would have preferred a Ring of Fire ending to how the book ended. (trying not to spoil too much)
    A cast of characters would have been helpful. Keeping up with the 10 main characters as Williamson flipped between using rank, first names and last names to refer to the characters made it hard to keep up with who was who.

    1. “Hey, did you guys see what Kameron Hurley wrote recently?”

      (insert Grumpy Cat saying “NO”)

  18. Bought it and just started reading it. So far, it’s off to a good start.

    Mike’s a good guy and a talented writer. I’m happy to call him friend. If you ever get a chance to go shooting with him, do it. It’s always a fun weekend.

  19. Bought and read the eARC a while back. Rated 5 star and did a review on Amazon.

    Highly enjoyed this book. So glad its a new series as well!

  20. I just finished the book. Excellent! I loved the characters’ points of view, in that they all seemed consistent throughout the story. The rebuilding civilization story was engrossing and I loved the end.

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