Buy “The Year of the Flood (Audible Audio Edition) Margaret Atwood, Bernadette Dunne, Katie MacNichol, Mark Bramhall, Random House Audio Books” Online
Welp. ..call me crazy but I’m not excited for the HBO series based on this series of post-apocalyptic spec-fic books anymore. I found the initial offering in the Maddaddam Trilogy, Oryx and Crake intriguing but a little too coincidental at times. That problem is multiplied a thousandfold in The Year of the Floor which has great science(hard and social), fascinating concepts, brilliant world building, great prose–but boring characters and a reductive plot that needlessly shoehorns in characters from the first book who should have remained a bit more enigmatic. Plot and character-wise, there’s nothing here that hasn’t been done before, which is perhaps the problem. In fact, it’s simply a retelling of the previous book from different character perspectives. Mankind has managed to kill most of itself off with a plague and the survivors have to rebuild themselves and their identities in the aftermath while avoiding all of the new dangers. We’ve seen this before, haven’t we? The Stand has more interesting characters, World War Z had better politics, but what Margaret Atwood tries to give us is cult religion and romance, with varying degrees of success throughout the book. Because of this, there are songs. Long, boring, rhyming religious songs, and their accompanying sermons, which are only interesting for the first few and last few chapters. I HATE songs lyrics written out in books unless they are short and interesting, which these are not, unfortunately. I really wanted them to be and even visited the website where someone has set them all to music and. ..NOPE. The book reads much cleaner without the songs. The sermons at least provide exposition and later, some plot details. However, unless you find the books fake religion inriguing(which I don’t), you’ll find much of the book’s content boring. Now, in fairness, this is the second book of a trilogy and I’ve just begun reading the last one. Hopefully Maddaddam is that rare brilliant trilogy closer that resolves all the problems of the first two books and makes you wish the series hadn’t ended. Hopefully. I just hope there aren’t any more songs. Check it out!
The Year of the Flood Audible – Unabridged Margaret Atwood (Author), Review
Dystopias are quite predictable in their general structure. There is an evil government or coalition that has developed a networkk of espionage and suppression. Expulsion, torture and murder are used and fake trials arrranged with fabricated evidence backing up absurd accusations. There is a high-tech police force whose presence is felt everywhere and nobody is to be trusted. Then you have the rebels who fight the suppressive system. Often there are cross-overs and treason. The rebels are without exception the good guys. Except the traitors, of course. Then there is a love affair where normally there is a Romeo-and-Juliet type relationship with one part belonging to the suppressors and the other to the rebels. Which one is which, varies. The ‘sheepä of the society do not wake up or take sides. They do not have anything to do with the development of the plot excpt for clogging up the highways and rotting all over the place. There are heroes, unlikely coincidences and an ending that you can zoom back from and run the credentials on with the theme music. Margaret Atwood’s The Year of the Flood follows this general layout quite faithfully. Why not, there are only so many stories in the history of literature that do their job in satisfying out expectations of how things get settled. What is remarkable is how very elegantly the writer lets the story unfold. Margaret Atwood does not underestimate her readers. There are little mysteries introduced along the way and the answers come at later instances. I like it when I am supposed to know something without being told. The first person approach works very well. Again, it is very nice, economic and truthful. When we are going through traumattizing experiences, we are lost and confused. Also, most of us are much more robust than we think we are. In a real mess where lives are in danger we have this ‘survive mode’ in the back of our heads that brings about calm in situations where we according to our own expectations should just fall apart cruying OMG OMG with a shrill voice like the ladies on YouTube. This is something Margaret Atwood seems to is obvious that we have to have something like that as we are here. ..evolution would have finished us of without it. I am very fond of Atwood’s vocabulary, her neologisms and her extremely stylish way of putting things between the lines and using words that carry references to other things that flash in your head while readong. Associations, they are called. If I should name something that Sets her apart from other fiction writers, I would pick ‘quality’. The ‘quality’ theme covers the constructs of the future world as well. There are high-tech things and some stuff that clearly is and will be impossible but that is (so I’ve understood) a part of this genre. It is delightful to read text where the facts are sound, where the plants and the animals that exist are correctly named and classed. Again, I appreciate the way Margaret Atwood trusts the general level of her writers, not dwelling too much on the details of the ecocatastrophy where the humanity seems to blindly be steering. We are supposed to know, there are no excuses for our ignorant behavior. To sum it up: This book is an exceptionally well written book with plenty of things to think about. You will probably look differently at the world, your habits, the misconceptions, hallucinations and lies that our economy and political systems are constructed on. You might even take a closer look at yourself and adjust something. Which is what books are for. Yes. One of the better books read this year! -Read Reviews-