this book starts out very well. america (and probably the world over), in the future, collapses. there are now two classes: the poor and the rich. no inbetwen societal structure anymore, like the middle class. anyway, macintosh weaves a very scary world. poor folks usually travel around in tribes. the number of folks in these roving trives provide safety in numbers for each other. the main narrator finds himself having to survive this way. however, he always wants the world to get better .... with him in it having success in a well-paying job with benefits. the time jumps forward, usually with each chapter. however, as the novel dragged on .... i found myself getting frustrated with flat dialogue and a few rather flat characters. however, the most insulting aspect of this novel is that the author writes female characters, always with big boobs. said characters are also painted as "airheads." hello? aren't there any smart gals out there? anyway, getting back to things, several women flash their boobs to strange men going by on the road. also, the male main character goes out with an airhead with a big chest. this male character also goes to bed with one of his roommates. oh boy! does he every love the "free" sex! however, one thing is missing .... and that is how his female partner feels about this dreadful "friends with benefits" sex. oh my! to reduce females to sexual objects is really quite irriating and just plain stupid. hey, fella, do us females in this world, and create brilliant somen. plus .... i don't know of any women in my circle that would ever debase themselves by lifting up their shirts .... yowza.
What a bleak world Will McIntosh creates in this future Earth. Everything is falling apart and it's apparently everyone for themselves. I found that some of his scenes stayed with me afterwards, thinking how could someone dream up these situations. I REALLY hope that this is not the way our civilization goes. The ending left me dissatisfied though because I wanted to know how Jasper, Phoebe and the others handle the new world they find themselves in.
The end comes not with a bang, but starts with economic disparity. We are spookily on the same path as this relentlessly grim vision of our near future, where the rich live in walled compounds, and the rest barely scrape by(see most of South America today). Plague viruses - most likely engineered to clean out the riff-raff and bands of violent gangs called Jumpy-Jumps with their own wild dialect drive populations from cities out into rural areas searching for food. Dissident scientists create unstoppable bamboo which quickly covers most of the land but also slows down the murderous military, and the Dr. Happy virus, which begins as a way to curb violence in the masses, and finally becomes the only redemtive choice. Chilling, with good character development and a slowly devolving, but compelling, plot, this is unfortunately a cautionary tale
Well written and captivating story. I hope there is a part 2. Would love to know what the future holds for them.
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