2016 Q3

Octavia Butler: Parable of the Sower

The Parable of the Sower cover

The Parable of the Sower is set in a dystopian future where climate change has made food, water, and energy prohibitively expensive and has worsened poverty and wealth imbalances.  The protagonist grew up in a tenuously middle class gated community and the book features her struggle to survive.

N K Jemisin: The Fifth Season

The Fifth Season cover

The Fifth Season is a smart, well-written fantasy novel with interesting characters and world building.

In the series, the world ends a lot.  The planet regularly has extreme weather events, called fifth seasons, where there might not be sunlight for years, and even in good times, there are frequent earthquakes and minor events.  The magic users in the book, orogenes, can control seismic activity to stop all that from happening -- or to make it worse.

JD Vance: Hillbilly Elegy

Hillbilly Elegy cover

Hillbilly Elegy is a memoir about someone growing up in an Appalachian town.  It is well written, touching, and will probably teach you something, especially if you don't grow up in Appalachia.

Leo Frankowski: The Cross-Time Engineer

The Cross Time Engineer cover

In middle school, I was on an airplane back home from somewhere (probably visiting relatives in Colorado or Pennsylvania).  I finished my book on the first flight and didn't have anything else to read, so the person sitting next to me on the plane gave me a book he had finished to read.  That book was The Radiant Warrior, the third book in the Conrad Stargard series by Leo Frankowski.

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