“[Kim Stanley Robinson's] New York 2140 is a towering novel about a genuinely grave threat to civilisation. Impressively ambitious, it bears comparison with other visionaries’ attempts to squeeze the sprawl and energy of the US between two covers: John Dos Passos’s USA trilogy and Don DeLillo’s Underworld.”
“What we want from hermits—why we’re endlessly fascinated by them, and why we’re just as often frustrated by them.” Here’s a review of The Stranger in the Woods.
“El Akkad’s debut novel transports us to a terrifyingly plausible future in which the clash between red states and blue has become deadly and the president has been murdered over a contentious fossil fuels bill.” Here’s a review of American War.
Says Joe Ide (IQ): “I think entertaining novels can deal with serious issues as part of the story. John Sanford’s latest, Escape Clause, happens in the illicit world of trading endangered species. Tana French’s main character in The Trespasser, a woman detective, deals with discrimination by her male colleagues. And there are other ways an entertaining novel can contribute to the common good. Violence can be portrayed but not glorified. Vicious characters don’t have to be cool. Kindness and ethical behavior can be virtues instead of vulnerabilities. Intelligence can triumph over guns. Cruelty, misogyny, drug use, violence, sociopathic tendencies don’t have to be celebrated.”