Saturday, June 6, 2009

Climate Collapse: Fiction Fodder

Post-apocalyptic dystopias have long been a theme of science fiction, and the growing public awareness of global warming has recently been finding expression in fiction. A trilogy (Forty Signs of Rain, Fifty Degrees Below, and Sixty Days and Counting) by Kim Stanley Robinson, completed in 2007, was set in a climate-changed Washington, DC.

The latest example of the genre, Far North by Marcel Theroux, is reviewed in today's WaPo:
Marcel Theroux's homespun tale about a solitary frontier survivor conjures up a monolithic world that's ominous and deeply memorable. He depicts a bleak Earth transformed, perhaps a century or two from now, by global warming and a society reduced to a mostly empty, radioactive husk; the remnant peoples are violent, ignorant and few and far between. Against the gray backdrop of abandoned towns, poisoned cities and occasional wildlife, a tough, hardy frontierswoman named Makepeace struggles to eke out a living on the strange and swiftly changing land.
The book is being published Tuesday (June 9) in the U.S. after having been released in the U.K. in March; it was reviewed by the Telegraph and the Independent at that time. The book was also reviewed recently by Strange Horizons.

In March, the author was the host of a documentary about Japan on BBC, "In Search of Wabi Sabi":

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