Adam One, the kindly leader of the God's Gardeners - a religion devoted to the melding of science and religion, the preservation of all species, the tending of the Earth, and the cultivation of bees and organic crops on flat rooftops - has long predicted the Waterless Flood. Now it has occured, obliterating most human life. Two women have avoided it- the young trapeze-dancer, Ren, locked into the high-end sex club, Scales and Tails; and former SecretBurgers meat-slinger turned gardener, Toby, barricaded into the luxurious AnooYoo Spa, where many of the treatments are edible.
Have others survived? Ren's bioartist friend Amanda, or the MaddAddam eco-fighters? Ren's one-time teenage lover, Jimmy? Or the murderous Painballers, survivors of the mutual-elimination Painball prison? Not to mention the CorpSeCorps, the shadowy and corrupt policing force of the ruling powers ...
Meanwhile, in the natural world, gene-spliced life forms are proliferating- the lion/lamb blends, the Mo'hair sheep with human hair, the pigs with human brain tissue. As Adam One and his intrepid hemp-clad band make their way through a ruined world, singing their devotional hymns and faithful to their creed and to their Saints - Saint Francis Assisi, Saint Rachel Carson and Saint Al Gore among them - what odds for Ren and Toby, and for the human race?
By turns dark, tender, violent, thoughtful and uneasily hilarious, The Year of the Flood is Atwood at her most effective.
* A major paperback from one of our great writers:following the first of her speculative fiction, ORYX AND CRAKE
IMPAC Dublin Literary Award 2011.
Margaret Atwood is the author of more than forty works, including fiction, poetry and critical essays, and her books have been published in over thirty-five countries. She has won many literary awards and prizes.