Book Review: The Year of The Flood by Margaret Atwood

This book is the second in the MaddAdam Trilogy, following Oryx and Crake however easily able to be read as a stand-alone.

The story is told from the points of view from two survivors of the Great Flood, a civilisation-destroying event that is the basis for the plot but never actually explained to the reader.

The survivors Toby and Ren are members of a religious group who are now isolated and trying to survive in the post-apocalyptic world, recounting their lives before The Flood and the events leading up to it. It is through their eyes that we see life in a future Earth setting.

Atwood delivers a refreshing interpretation of the cluttered dystopia field. Mixing everyday technologies we use now with enhanced versions on things that are currently being developed made the details of the world believable.

Initially the setting within the religious group turned me off but with a wary disposition I slowly came around thanks to relatable characters Toby and Zeb, and I genuinely cared about what happened to Ren.

Atwood’s approach in telling the story from the actual year of the flood and then cutting back to the events leading up to it was a little odd and perhaps not perfectly executed. It took the edge off the events of the 25th year (The Year of the Flood) however she did such a good job with the characters that the possibly the plot took a back seat.

Once I had engaged with the characters I couldn’t put the book down.

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