Tuesday, 3 July 2012

The Age Of Miracles by Karen Thompson Walker

21st June 2012,384 Pages
Paperback, Review copy
Science Fiction

Summary from Simon and Schuster

'It is never what you worry over that comes to pass in the end. The real catastrophes are always different - unimagined, unprepared for, unknown…'
What if our 24-hour day grew longer, first in minutes, then in hours, until day becomes night and night becomes day? What effect would this slowing have on the world? On the birds in the sky, the whales in the sea, the astronauts in space, and on an eleven-year-old girl, grappling with emotional changes in her own life..?
One morning, Julia and her parents wake up in their suburban home in California to discover, along with the rest of the world, that the rotation of the earth is noticeably slowing. The enormity of this is almost beyond comprehension. And yet, even if the world is, in fact, coming to an end, as some assert, day-to-day life must go on. Julia, facing the loneliness and despair of an awkward adolescence, witnesses the impact of this phenomenon on the world, on the community, on her family and on herself.

The Mole's review

This is what should be classified as a Sci-Fi story of true catastrophic times times. I am a believer though that in Sci-fi the science should either be correct or so futuristic as to be unchallengeable. Unfortunately this comes under neither heading - the science doesn't work right from the beginning - and I am one of those readers that questions such things and am niggled by it, to the point of really ruining my read. People who want to disagree are welcome to discuss this with me - but off-line please!

Anyway, take away the science and what is left?

As the days grow longer the author contemplates and explores the effect this could have on society. Some of those effects are predictable, but some are not so obvious. A truly black picture is painted. Other issues surrounding 11 year olds' relationships with families and friends are also explored - some relating to the slowing and some not.

I may be in the minority, but I'm afraid I really did not overly enjoy this book. But as this book is written from the 11 year-old stand point perhaps I don't represent it's target audience?

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