image from yearoftheflood.com

Over the last few years I’ve read a lot of science fiction – or rather ‘speculative fiction’ on floods. Massive, destructive, Earth-drowning floods. You know, when runaway climate change causes the polar ice caps to melt and suddenly the Statue of Liberty is nothing but a torch thrusting out from the waters of the New York Bay.

I like reading about stuff like that – apocalyptic dystopia’s, disastrous future scenarios – so long as I’m warm, dry and well fed. After all, I don’t want to actually live them.

So imagine how pleased I was to find that Canadian writer Margret Atwood – author of such great dystopian works as The Handmaid’s Tale (1985) and Oryx and Crake (2003) – has recently published a continuation of the latter called The Year of the Flood. And who cares if it’s not about a real flood?

From a review by fellow literary luminary Ursula K Le Guin for The Year of the Flood in the Guardian:

The Gardeners, an eco-religious sect, farm rooftops, which can be defended from the gangs and marauders who infest the streets, and try to follow a way of harmony with nature through the breakdown of civilisation.

You had me at eco-religious sect.

Here is an interview with Margret Atwood on New Mexico in Focus, in which the author and her partner and fellow author Graeme Gibson discuss their books and how they relate to environmental issues.

IN FOCUS: Margaret Atwood Interview (2009-12-04)

by Graham Land

Additional resources:

Yearoftheflood.com