cover image Sunvault


Edited by Phoebe Wagner and Brontë Christopher Wieland. Upper Rubber Boot, $13.99 trade paper (253p) ISBN 978-1-937-79475-0

Every story and poem in this optimistic illustrated anthology of “solarpunk and eco-speculation” portrays a future in which environmental disaster is encroaching on or encompassing our world, but a glimmer of hope remains. A job applicant in T.X. Watson’s “The Boston Hearth Project” explains how a so-called terrorist can be an otherwise helpless group’s salvation. In Tyler Young’s “Last Chance,” people go to extremes to teach children how to keep from ruining their world, even when one of those children is dying. The title character of Camille Meyers’s “Solar Child” is four-year-old Ella, who partially sustains herself through photosynthesis; she is threatened by religious zealots who oppose the genetic modification that gave her this ability. In A.C. Wise’s lyrical “A Catalogue of Sunlight at the End of the World,” an old man stays behind when the generation ships leave Earth; he feels that no one should die alone, including the planet. Some pieces are bizarre. Many are haunting and will linger in the reader’s memory. Readers who’ve had their fill of dystopian fiction will want to explore these more positive futures. (Sept.)