Sunday, April 9, 2017

C. E. Matthews on Elkie Riches' Reclamation

Reclamation: This is a book written with great care and attention to language, by turns precise and then evocative. It deals with the last gasps of a militarised humanity losing its final foothold on Earth following nature's revolution against us. It builds both tension and mystery as it describes the desperation lurking beneath the military facade. It also builds complexity, as its moral contours grow murkier and the plot develops. There are plenty of surprises in the way the story is revealed, but they are all congruent with the larger narrative and never feel out of place. There are many subversive ideas here, from the attempt to weaponise spirituality to the failure of science in the face of wrath of nature. "As he stands alone beneath that shifting ceiling, small in the immensity of the forest, he feels like a hero, the very embodiment go human endeavour against mindless nature. His boots stamp possessively at the earth as he raises his flamethrower to the sky. Beneath his breath he repeats a phrase that has given a justification to his innate aggression, because if truth be known, as it must be eventually, he has relished all that has happened to mankind." The ideas here are sometimes challenging, and in places the outlook is very bleak, but there is hope here too.
To read more about Reclamation, please click HERE.

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