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Wall Around Eden (1989)

by Joan Slonczewski

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2193124,400 (3.57)12
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A small community is isolated when the world blows up, and only a few enclaves are saved by aliens. Did the aliens cause this? What are the survivors to do?

The enclaves are somewhat protected from the toxicity of the rest of the world, but not entirely; radiation in groundwater makes all their water and crops dangerous... and yet, one must eat.

What did the aliens do? What do they think they're doing now? Everyone wonders, and diverse people react very differently to the situations.

This is not a save-the-universe sort of novel; it's more meditative and human-scale. Characters grow and change; the aliens may or may not be more comprehensible; and the plot threads weigh different factors with understandable flaws all around.

In short, I guess I'd call it a novel about curiosity and compromise. ( )
  cissa | Jun 12, 2014 |
Engrossing; left me with a slightly sad and melancholy feel, though in a good way. A post-apocalypse morality tale that feels very different from the rebuilding story of something like Earth Abides.

Best quote: "Jael nursed, more alert than usual, her angelic eyes fixed upward adoringly at her mother, while her mouth chomped on the breast, making snuffling noises. What an odd hybrid creature an infant was, half angel and half piglet." ( )
  comixminx | Apr 5, 2013 |
The setting is twenty years after doomsday - when the world experienced a nuclear winter. Earth's population is only a fraction of what it once was and is held captive within small pockets of humanity around the globe by a seemingly benign alien intelligence. Joan Slonczewski explores the concepts of freedom and slavery, religion and freewill, and our role in creation through the perspective of soon-to-be-adult Isabel Garcia-Chase and the small captive community of Gwynnwood.

As always, Slonczewski's book is easily readible with enough science to keep it interesting without bombarding the user with fine technical detail. ( )
  tursach_anam | Jul 7, 2008 |
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