King of the Shadows was written in 1964. Most humans are killed in a pandemic caused by microscopic life from space, a topic of speculation in 1963 for Time and the Wall Street Journal. Baranabas Quain is one of the rare survivors: his odyssey to find fellow survivors in a post-apocalyptic United States is unusually timely and hopeful as he meets a set of improbable characters adjusting to a world with few people.
Wallace Macfarlane authored more than 80 short stories published in Analog, Galaxy, If, Colliers and the Saturday Evening Post between 1950 and 1975. He also wrote two novels, which were not published. This is one of them.
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About the Author
Wallace Macfarlane was born in Washington DC in 1918, moving to Berkeley California shortly thereafter. His parents moved to Oahu, Hawaii in 1920, and back to Berkeley in 1923. After graduating from Northwestern, he joined the U.S. Army. Unusually adept at hitting long range targets with Howitzers, he spent 2 years training men in artillery before taking a company to France in 1944. Following World War 2, he moved back to California, winding up in Julian growing apples, doing road construction and writing science fiction. He died in 1999, still on the farm he lived on since 1945.