Far North

Marcel Theroux, Author . Farrar, Straus & Giroux $25 (314p) ISBN 978-0-374-15353-3

Theroux’s postapocalyptic road novel will inevitably be compared to that other postapocalyptic road novel Oprah liked, and while Theroux (son of Paul) is not the existential stylist McCarthy is, he is a superior plotter. Global warming has decimated civilization, and narrator Makepeace Hatfield is the sole survivor of her Siberian settlement. After coming across another survivor and seeing a plane in the sky, Makepeace heads out to find other settlements. Unfortunately, Horeb, the first settlement she finds, is Hobbesian, and the camp’s leader, Reverend Boathwaite, sells her into a slave gang. Marched a thousand miles west to an old gulag, Makepeace spends five years as a slave and eventually escapes after she’s dispatched as a slave-guard to a ravaged city now known as the Zone. Teaming up with another escaped slave, the two try to trek back to Makepeace’s original home, but tragedy strikes again. Granted, the novel suffers from a certain predetermination—to tell the tale means that the taleteller survives—but Theroux succeeds in crafting a wildly eccentric and intelligent page-turner that’s ultimately and strangely hopeful. (June)

Reviewed on: 03/23/2009
Release date: 06/01/2009
Genre: Fiction
Paperback - 288 pages - 978-0-571-23777-7
Paperback - 314 pages - 978-0-312-42972-0
Ebook - 320 pages - 978-1-4299-5902-5
Paperback - 320 pages - 978-1-55468-298-0
Hardcover - 377 pages - 978-4-12-004364-2
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