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Sunday, March 19, 2017

Spring Break

Papers to grade and lecture prep for the back end aside, my plans for Spring Break (well underway) are to read Nnedi Okorafor's Binti: Home, Becky Chambers' A Closed And Common Orbit, Kim Stanley Robinson's New York 2140, and Kameron Hurley's The Stars Are Legion.

1 comment:

jimf said...

> . . .my plans for Spring Break (well underway) are to read. . .

Just saw this one reviewed in the Times. I'll have to take a
look at it next time I'm in Barnes & Noble.
A Haunting Debut Looks Ahead to a Second American Civil War
Books of The Times
MARCH 27, 2017

By Omar El Akkad
333 pages. Knopf. $26.95.

Omar El Akkad’s debut novel, “American War,” is an unlikely
mash-up of unsparing war reporting and plot elements familiar
to readers of the recent young-adult dystopian series
“The Hunger Games” and “Divergent.” . . .

Set in the closing decades of the 21st century and the opening
ones of the 22nd, El Akkad’s novel recounts what happened during
the Second American Civil War between the North and South and
its catastrophic aftermath. It is a story that extrapolates the
deep, partisan divisions that already plague American politics
and looks at where those widening splits could lead. A story that
maps the palpable consequences for the world of accelerating
climate change and an unraveling United States. . .

[El Akkad uses]. . . details — many gathered, it seems, during
his years as a reporter — to make his fictional future feel
alarmingly real. . . using a collagelike method (involving
fictional news clippings, oral history excerpts, memoirs,
government documents) to help chronicle the events that led
to and followed the Second American Civil War.

Those events include escalating battles over the use of
fossil fuel; the assassination of the United States president
by a secessionist suicide bomber in 2073; horrifying drone
attacks, massacres and guerrilla violence that further embitter
both sides; and, just as the war is about to conclude in 2095
with a reunification ceremony, the release of a biological
agent by a Southern terrorist that results in a decade-long
plague claiming 110 million lives. . .