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Drowning Towers Paperback – December, 1996


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 387 pages
  • Publisher: Avon Books (Mm); First printing edition (December 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 038078601X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0380786015
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1 x 6.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,638,713 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Under its original title, The Sea and Summer , this book recently received the Arthur C. Clarke Award as the best SF novel published in England in 1987. Australian writer Turner envisions a 21st century nightmare that is the result not of war but of economic and climatic forces already underway. Massive unemployment has combined with the greenhouse effect (raising global temperatures and the sea level) to produce a society in which nine-tenths of the population lives in high-rise ghettos, jobless and demoralized. The social fall of the Conway family and their sons' desperate fight back up the ladder through scholarships and government service expose the viscera of the system. Although his story contains some romantic notions about poverty, and characters such as tower boss Billy Kovacs, a knight in tarnished armor, Turner also asks hard questions and is particularly skillful in his examination of a major Thomas Disch theme: the problems and responsibilities of intelligence in such a milieu. A fine, thoughtful novel.
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

A family in the 21st century struggles to survive in a world beset by overpopulation, depletion of resources, and the inexorable reclamation of the land by the encroaching sea. Turner ( Beloved Son ) endows this cautionary tale with compassion and insight, never losing his focus on the human dimension. Recommended for sf collections. JC
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Hank Schwartz on December 15, 2000
Format: Paperback
George Turner has an extraordinary way with characters and situations in a human culture rapidly on its way down. This novel is an enthralling snapshot before it hits bottom.
No aliens, no hard sci-fi, just an appalling vision of a degraded society reduced to "sweets" and "swill". Turner requires few words to paint a dense and intense reality peopled with unlovable but heroic and respectable individuals.
The story is told in the several voices of its players, a well employed technique that permits insight into the otherwise obscure internal worlds of the actors.
The main plot is concerned with a relatively brief incident that becomes a fulcrum on which are balanced and revealed remarkable revelations of the past that led to this extremity and of the possible futures that inaction and lack of forethought might well bring.
A most thought provoking and worrying novel, an intense good read, a plea for wisdom and more than just being.
Read this book!!!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 24, 2000
Format: Paperback
Drowning Towers is the first George Turner novel I've read and I certainly plan to correct that problem from now on. I was immensely impressed with the well-developed characters, the feasible futuristic world and how the plot itself kept moving and evolving right to the end. The novel was set in Australia but it could well have been set in any developed country. Though Turner's imagination delves into the politics, economics and technology of this future world it mainly is a human story. Its shows the possible results of how the communities and countries of the present could bring the future generations close to extinction. The main part of the novel revolves around 1 futuristic family and other individuals connected with it and their fight for survival and quality of life in a world that is spiralling into self-destruction. The switch between narrators gives the characters dimension and mortality. Turner's chapters, even his sentences, are rounded out and stand so well on their own - so many are poignant - but you don't get the feeling he was trying to show off...the wordiness works for him. By the end of the novel I felt attached to the characters and prompted to consider what seems to be a very realistic and well thought-out view of the future, hence, essential Sci-Fi and a very good read.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By rickzz on June 18, 2007
Format: Paperback
Drowning Towers was published back in 1987 and won an Arthur C. Clarke award. It was written by the Australian writer George Turner, who was in his 70s at the time and is now deceased.

It's an exceptional and prescient book about the potential effects of global warming, which now seems more timely than ever. Think of it as a portrait of humanity under pressure.

DT and "Brain Child" (1991) are Turner's masterpieces (I've read most of his other SF novels and those two are his best by far).

It's a shame this is out of print. Sometimes, quality alone isn't enough...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 6, 1999
Format: Paperback
As this book is set in my home suburb, I feel close to the 'action' in a way. The book deals with overpopulation and how this will affect both the economic and social fabric of our society. It deals with the collapse of society due to population/global warming/lack of ANY contingency plans for economic collapse, through the eyes of a not particularly likeable family. It should make the reader think (which is always a good thing) about our political system which can see no further than the next election.
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