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Cover image for Future home of the living god
Format:
Title:
Future home of the living god
ISBN:
9781538456156

9781538456132

9780062742391
Edition:
Unabridged.
Distribution:
Prince Frederick, MD : Recorded Books, [2017]
Publication:
[New York] : HarperAudio ; Ashland, Oregon : Blackstone Audio, ℗2017.
Physical Description:
9 audio discs (10 3/4 hr.) : CD audio, digital ; 4 3/4 in.
General Note:
Compact discs.
Summary:
The world as we know it is ending. Evolution has reversed itself, affecting every living creature on earth. Science cannot stop the world from running backwards, as woman after woman gives birth to infants that appear to be primitive species of humans. Twenty-six-year-old Cedar Hawk Songmaker, adopted daughter of a pair of big-hearted, open-minded Minneapolis liberals, is as disturbed and uncertain as the rest of America around her. But for Cedar, this change is profound and deeply personal. She is four months pregnant. Though she wants to tell the adoptive parents who raised her from infancy, Cedar first feels compelled to find her birth mother, Mary Potts, an Ojibwe living on the reservation, to understand both her and her baby's origins. As Cedar goes back to her own biological beginnings, society around her begins to disintegrate, fueled by a swelling panic about the end of humanity. There are rumors of martial law, of Congress confining pregnant women. Of a registry, and rewards for those who turn these wanted women in. Flickering through the chaos are signs of increasing repression: a shaken Cedar witnesses a family wrenched apart when police violently drag a mother from her husband and child in a parking lot. The streets of her neighborhood have been renamed with Bible verses. A stranger answers the phone when she calls her adoptive parents, who have vanished without a trace. It will take all Cedar has to avoid the prying eyes of potential informants and keep her baby safe.
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Library
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CD - ERDRICH
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Erdrich
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CD Erdrich, L.
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Summary

Summary

Louise Erdrich, the New York Times bestselling, National Book Award-winning author of LaRose and The Round House, paints a startling portrait of a young woman fighting for her life and her unborn child against oppressive forces that manifest in the wake of a cataclysmic event.

The world as we know it is ending. Evolution has reversed itself, affecting every living creature on earth. Science cannot stop the world from running backwards, as woman after woman gives birth to infants that appear to be primitive species of humans. Thirty-two-year-old Cedar Hawk Songmaker, adopted daughter of a pair of big-hearted, open-minded Minneapolis liberals, is as disturbed and uncertain as the rest of America around her. But for Cedar, this change is profound and deeply personal. She is four months pregnant.

Though she wants to tell the adoptive parents who raised her from infancy, Cedar first feels compelled to find her birth mother, Mary Potts, an Ojibwe living on the reservation, to understand both her and her baby's origins. As Cedar goes back to her own biological beginnings, society around her begins to disintegrate, fueled by a swelling panic about the end of humanity.

There are rumors of martial law, of Congress confining pregnant women. Of a registry, and rewards for those who turn these wanted women in. Flickering through the chaos are signs of increasing repression: a shaken Cedar witnesses a family wrenched apart when police violently drag a mother from her husband and child in a parking lot. The streets of her neighborhood have been renamed with Bible verses. A stranger answers the phone when she calls her adoptive parents, who have vanished without a trace. It will take all Cedar has to avoid the prying eyes of potential informants and keep her baby safe.

A chilling dystopian novel both provocative and prescient, Future Home of the Living God is a startlingly original work from one of our most acclaimed writers: a moving meditation on female agency, self-determination, biology, and natural rights that speaks to the troubling changes of our time.

Author's preferred text.


Author Notes

Karen Louise Erdrich was born on June 7, 1954 in Little Falls, Minnesota. Erdrich grew up in Wahpeton, North Dakota, where both of her parents were employed by the Bureau of Indian Affairs. She is a member of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa. Erdrich graduated from Dartmouth College in 1976 with an AB degree, and she received a Master of Arts in creative writing from Johns Hopkins University in 1979.

Erdrich published a number of poems and short stories from 1978 to 1982. In 1981 she married author and anthropologist Michael Dorris, and together they published The World's Greatest Fisherman, which won the Nelson Algren Award in 1982. In 1984 she won the National Book Critics Circle Award for Love Medicine, which is an expansion of a story that she had co-written with Dorris. Love Medicine was also awarded the Virginia McCormick Scully Prize (1984), the Sue Kaufman Prize (1985) and the Los Angeles Times Award for best novel (1985).

In addition to her prose, Erdrich has written several volumes of poetry, a textbook, children's books, and short stories and essays for popular magazines. She has been the recipient of numerous awards for professional excellence, including the National Magazine Fiction Award in 1983 and a first-prize O. Henry Award in 1987. Erdrich has also received the Pushcart Prize in Poetry, the Western Literacy Association Award, the 1999 World Fantasy Award, and the Scott O'Dell Award for Historical Fiction in 2006. In 2007 she refused to accept an honorary doctorate from the University of North Dakota in protest of its use of the "Fighting Sioux" name and logo.

Erdrich's novel The Round House made the New York Times bestseller list in 2013. Her other New York Times bestsellers include Future Home of the Living God (2017).

(Bowker Author Biography)


Reviews 4

Publisher's Weekly Review

Set in Minnesota in a dystopian future in which evolution is going haywire, much of this startling new work of speculative fiction by Erdrich (LaRose) takes the form of a diary by pregnant Cedar Hawk Songmaker addressed to her unborn child. Happily raised and well-educated by her adopted parents Sera and Glen Songmaker, Cedar decides nevertheless to visit her Ojibwe birth family on the rez up north. But times are strange: "our world is running backward. Or forward. Or maybe sideways." Flora and fauna are taking on prehistoric characteristics, and there is talk of viruses. It isn't long before pregnant women are being rounded up. Cedar meets up again with her baby's father, Phil, and for a while she hides with him. But eventually she is caught by the authorities, who reveal nothing about what is happening. A hospital incarceration, escape, violence, and murder ensue as Cedar and other pregnant women she meets along the way-helped by the valiant Sera, Cedar's adoptive mother-will do anything to protect themselves and their babies. Erdrich's characters are brave and conscientious, but none of them really come across as people; they act mostly as vehicles for Erdrich's ideas. Those ideas, however-reproductive freedom, for one, and faith in and respect for the natural world-are strikingly relevant. Erdrich has written a cautionary tale for this very moment in time. (Nov.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.


Booklist Review

*Starred Review* Cedar Hawk Songmaker, the adopted Native American daughter of two white Minnesota liberals, is secretly pregnant when she discovers that her birth name is Mary Potts. With this slash of wry cultural irony, Erdrich (LaRose, 2016) launches a breakout work of speculative fiction in which a sudden reversal of evolution is underway, threatening the future of humankind and life itself. The disintegrating, increasingly fascist and evangelical government is rounding up and incarcerating pregnant women, so Cedar heads to her Ojibwe birth mother's reservation. But no place is safe and she is soon on the run. Throughout her harrowing, often darkly funny ordeal, she keeps a journal for her child whom she knows she has little chance of raising recounting, with exceptional sensory and psychological precision, the horrors of her predicament, the wild courage of the underground network helping fugitive mothers-to-be, and, in stark contrast to the violent chaos, the miraculous growth of her fetus.In this feverish cautionary tale, Erdrich enters the realm of Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale (1985), Emily Schultz's The Blondes (2015), Edan Lepucki's California (2014), Laura van den Berg's Find Me (2015), and Claire Vaye Watkins' Gold, Fame, Citrus (2015), infusing her masterful, full-tilt dystopian novel with stinging insights into the endless repercussions of the Native American genocide, hijacked spirituality, and the ongoing war against women's rights. A tornadic, suspenseful, profoundly provoking novel of life's vulnerability and insistence. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Erdrich's devoted readers will flock, of course, but so will a wider audience attracted by the bold apocalyptic theme, searing social critique, and high-adrenaline action.--Seaman, Donna Copyright 2017 Booklist


New York Review of Books Review

THE DAWN WATCH: Joseph Conrad in a Global World, by Maya Jasanoff. (Penguin, $18.) Jasanoff, a Harvard professor, explores how Conrad's novels grappled with Western imperialism and sought to expose its many hypocrisies. "Jasanoff does not forgive Conrad his blindness," our reviewer, Ngugi wa Thiong'O, wrote, but she offers context to his perspective, "one that still has strong resonance today" THE COMPLETE STORIES, by Clarice Lispector. Translated by Katrina Dodson. Edited by Benjamin Moser. (New Directions, $21.95.) In the strange stories across this collection, Lispector establishes herself as a truly original Latin American writer. Our reviewer, Terrence Rafferty, praised the collection, warning that it "is a dangerous book to read quickly or casually because it's so consistently delirious." THE SHADOW IN THE GARDEN: A Biographer's Tale, by James Atlas. (Vintage, $19.) Atlas has written acclaimed biographies of the writers Saul Bellow and Delmore Schwartz, and discusses the process by which artists' life stories get told. Along the way, Atlas revisits his childhood in Chicago, his formative time at Oxford (where he studied with the noted Joyce scholar Richard Ellmann) and the works of classic biographers. THE HOUSE OF IMPOSSIBLE BEAUTIES, by Joseph Cassara. (Ecco, $16.99.) A debut novel follows the gay ballroom subculture of 1980s New York, including the imagined lives of figures from the documentary "Paris Is Burning." The story centers on the House of Xtravaganza, an all-Latino ballroom in the Harlem circuit. Angel founded the house with her partner, but when the partner dies of AIDS-related complications, it falls to her to shelter the house's members from rejection and abuse, and foster a community. ALONE: Britain, Churchill, and Dunkirk: Defeat Into Victory, by Michael Korda. (Liveright, $18.95.) Korda was a child during the war, and his memories of the 1940 defeat offer a satisfying complement to the historical account. Other books may provide more robust discussions of the Dunkirk evacuation's military dimension, but Korda highlights the Royal Navy's essential, if often overlooked, role in the operation. FUTURE HOME OF THE LIVING GOD, by Louise Erdrich. (Harper Perennial, $16.99.) Evolution runs backward in Erdrich's futuristic novel; Cedar, the main character, is expecting a baby as the rights of pregnant women are under threat. The book is structured as a letter to her unborn child, chronicling the world's unraveling, with urgent climate change worries and ever-tightening martial law.


Library Journal Review

Twenty-six-year-old, four-months-pregnant Cedar Hawk Songmaker was adopted by Minneapolis liberals but has recently reconnected with her extended Ojibwe birth family. Reunion notwithstanding, the world is in dystopic collapse-evolution is in rapid reverse, the Church of the New Constitution has usurped control, the human race is imploding-and Cedar's determined to record the tumult for her unborn child. Her fertile womb makes her a target, as pregnant women are hunted and imprisoned; protecting her baby becomes a desperate race against time. Begun in 2001 (according to the acknowledgments) and completed in spring 2017 (revealed in the introduction), the interrupted incubation might explain the unfinished characterizations and disjointed story lines; only -Erdrich's richly nuanced reading improves the uneven narrative. VERDICT The rediscovered popularity of womb dystopia will surely fuel interest in Erdrich's Future; libraries should be prepared to provide multi-format access to the author's substantial audiences. ["This chilling speculative fiction is perfect for readers seeking the next Handmaid's Tale": LJ 9/15/17 review of the Harper hc.]-Terry Hong, -Smithsonian -BookDragon, Washington, DC © Copyright 2018. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.