3 out of 4 stars
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Earthships: Earth’s Blue Sky, Will Our Children Remember? is a dystopian novel and Book 2 of the Earthships Series created by Bonnie Jane Hall.
The year is 2035. Laurel Campbell and her boyfriend Sage Halley, a recently discharged marine stationed in Libya, get married and start their own family. Laurel is a twenty-three-year-old designer and architect who helps people and animals survive the climate shift by building underground fortresses called Earthships that can last thousands of years all over northwestern America. Climate shift is caused by burning fossil fuels and cutting down virgin rain forests. It results to extreme weather conditions and unpredictable weather patterns. Consequently, the planet suffers gigantic earthquakes, huge cyclones, massive hurricanes, intense and damaging tornadoes, flash floods, thunderstorms, blizzards, forest fires, and new pathogens. These, in turn, result to scarcity of food and drinking water, making thieves out of decent but starving human beings leading to domestic terrorism.
Laurel, together with her extended family, tries to maintain a sense of normalcy and celebrates life to the fullest by sharing love and compassion not just to people but to animals as well. By growing organic foods in greenhouses, she keeps her family and other people fed, and by keeping pets like horses, dogs, cats, and birds, she puts a temporary halt to the imminent extinction of these species.
Told in the first-person perspective of Laurel, this is a touching, informative, and thought-provoking book with nineteen chapters. It describes in painful and scary detail the possible consequences of people’s incessant burning of fossil fuels and ravaging of natural resources. Moreover, the author depicts future innovation in technology including devices with seemingly companionable artificial intelligence, driverless vehicles for rent, androids, robots, and drones.
Admittedly, I enjoyed reading this book. I find the depiction of the possible future of the planet frighteningly realistic. The author successfully evokes sufficient amount of fear and hope by illustrating burned-out forests, destroyed houses, gang attacks, and rodent attacks, as well as beekeeping, wind turbines, solar cells, snow-melting roof, and underground cisterns.
The book is, generally, an easy read, except for the parts that explain the environmental and economic conditions of the country which require focus for better comprehension. The characters are developed enough to be relatable, and though Laurel is the ultimate protagonist with her unconditional love for her family, intense compassion for other people and animals, and burning passion to save the environment, it is Grams whom I like the most, with her nutritious meals and delicious desserts. I find her presence comforting and reassuring. Furthermore, though I prefer a different ending, I believe the book concludes the way it does in preparation for the next book in the series.
However, I find the pacing a little inconsistent and the dialogues monotonous that it is sometimes difficult to tell the characters apart from their manner of speaking. Finally, there are several noticeable errors within the entire book.
I, therefore, rate this book 3 out of 4 stars. It is a touching and informative book that celebrates life while facing the possibility of death and extinction. It is a wake-up call that also offers hope and redemption for anyone who would take the time to act.
Earthships, book 2
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