The times and species have been changing at a rapid rate, and the social compact is wearing as thin as environmental stability. Adam One, the kindly leader of the God's Gardeners - a religion devoted to the melding of science and religion, as well as the preservation of all plant and animal life - has long predicted a natural disaster that will alter Earth as we know it. Now it has occurred, obliterating most human life. Two women have survived: Ren, a young trapeze dancer locked inside the high-end sex club Scales and Tails, and Toby, a God's Gardener barricaded inside a luxurious spa where many of the treatments are edible.
Have others survived? Ren's bioartist friend Amanda? Zeb, her eco-fighter stepfather? Her onetime lover, Jimmy? Or the murderous Painballers, survivors of the mutual-elimination Painball prison? Not to mention the shadowy, corrupt policing force of the ruling powers . . .
Meanwhile, gene-spliced life forms are proliferating: the lion/lamb blends, the Mo'hair sheep with human hair, the pigs with human brain tissue. As Adam One and his intrepid hemp-clad band make their way through this strange new world, Ren and Toby will have to decide on their next move. They can't stay locked away . . .
By turns dark, tender, violent, thoughtful, and uneasily hilarious, The Year of the Flood is Atwood at her most brilliant and inventive.
©2009 Margaret Atwood; (P)2009 Random House
The characters were well written but the story was choppy. It seemed as if someone took out huge pieces of pertinent information. I hated the songs, yuk.
This is Margaret Atwood at her finest. I loved Oryx and Crake, but I think this book surpasses it. As I listen to more and more audiobooks, I find the narration is almost as important as the story and these readers prose and pace was excellent! I can't wait for the next Atwood creation.
Year of the Flood is a wonderful crafted, multi-faceted story. I loved all the characters and the interweaving. Also the slight reference to Oryx and Crake (another novel). The book shows the deep thoughts and considerations that Margaret Atwood gives to her novels. Her timeliness is right on the money.
Having never read Atwood before, at first I thought this book was weird, slow, hated the music, and forced myself to keep listening because the subject intrigued me. I started to really get into it a third of the way through, even appreciating the sickenly sweet preachy music because it actually made sense with the Gardeners. Thought the ending was anticlimatic, but I'm looking forward to listening to her other books including the prequel to this one. I recommend this book to everyone who enjoys pondering the future of our world and is interested in the what-ifs.
I'm surprised that some reviewers didn't like the connection with Oryx and Crate and/or the music. I thought the flip of perspective fascinating and not at all heavy-handed. The music added a level of immediacy and realism to the religious world of the Gardeners that works. I found this a very satisfying companion piece to Oryx and Crate.
though i loved 'oryx and crake' i was a little hesitant about listening to 'the year of the flood' -- rather than reading it -- because of all the negative comments about the singing. now, a week after finishing this book, i find myself remembering the songs. i think they drew me deeper into the strange world of the god's gardeners. and the lyrics, by margaret atwood, of course, were clever and funny. i had to force myself not to finish 'the year of the flood' too quickly. i enjoyed it as much as i had 'oryx and crake.'
If The Blind Assassin was Atwood's best work, this is without doubt her worst. I was hugely disappointed in this supposed sequel to Oryx and Crake which was a fairly decent novel. I was totally sick of the reader's voice, the plot, (a waterless flood?) was almost non-existent and the overall effect was chick-lit dystopia. Add to that way too much quasi-religious music and what you have is a big waste.
Excellent reader...very good book...went back and listened to Oryx and Crake again after listening to "Flood"....enjoyed it more! Atwood is funny and right on.
I loved Oryx and Crake so had high hopes. But most of the content occurs before the "big event", not after. So it's more about a near-term futuristic world than a post-apocalyptic one. And the songs are, respectfully, dreadful. There are 6 or 7 of them, and after listening to one I skipped through the rest. Truly awful. In between these and the gratuitously graphic scenes of violence and pornogrpahy was a story-line that compelled me to want to keep listening. But in the end it would have been just as well not to have started.
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