As we face the potentially dire consequences of climate change, Markey offers up a powerful, deeply complex apocalyptic novel moving from the time of the Obama administration to 2040’s when super-typhoons and heat waves devastate the Earth. We’re left with fires, floods, and massive global migration to escape the climate devastation. Political polarization prevents any meaningful action from being taken, civil rights get eviscerated, famines become the norm, and eco-terrorism dramatically escalates.
The novel – with its combined elements of thriller, future horror, and satiric social commentary – features myriad and divergent plots. These range from a visionary researcher on methane gas trapped under ocean flora to a political operative, marketing maven, Hollywood activist, an opioid addict and eco-terrorist, with a whole cast of supporting characters wrapped up into each of their plot lines.
These stories – from greenhouse gases erupting to legislative wrangling to social media posturing – all converge in the 2020’s with the election of Black woman president committed to climate clean-up. Markey’s novel is destined to be a classic on climate change, as well as an incendiary send-up of the uber-wealthy and powerful who stand in the way of formative change as profits and resource grabbing prove way more compelling to them.
But be warned- this novel comes in super long at 900 pages, so it takes commitment and focus to get through it to the climax of apocalyptic climate events.
Ultimately, this dystopian book leaves an indelible mark on your thinking about all of us standing passively by as civilization as we know it collapses.
Thanks to Simon & Schuster and NetGalley for an advanced reader’s copy.