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Swarm Kindle Edition
In a not-so-far-off future of diminished energy reserves and collapsing economies, thirty-seven-year-old Sandy Burch-Bailey lives a difficult existence. She survives by fishing, farming, and beekeeping in a small island community with her partner, Marvin, and their elderly and ill friend, Thompson. As they wait for an overdue supply ship to arrive with medicine for Thompson, vegetables go missing from their garden. A footprint in the soil leads Sandy to believe the thief is a homeless youngster. Childless and aching to be a mother, Sandy narrates her story to the child, reliving her life in a city plagued by power outages, unemployment, and violent protests. When the girl’s life is threatened, Sandy and Marvin must come together to protect both the child and their fragile community.
Told in two storylines divided by geography and time, Swarm is a suspenseful and powerful debut novel about survival and coming to terms with life’s regrettable choices.
- ASIN : B00DCB635A
- Publisher : Brindle & Glass (September 17, 2013)
- Publication date : September 17, 2013
- Language : English
- File size : 1610 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Sticky notes : On Kindle Scribe
- Print length : 290 pages
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from the United States
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The bees, the swarm of the title inhabit both parts of the novel and are a symbolic link to both what has gone wrong with the world and the possibility of hope. Swarm explores and all too likely scenario of economic collapse that leaves the largest part of the population hopeless.
Swarm reminded me of Margaret Attwood’s work in which everything carries weight. The story is built on the warp and woof of time and meaning. We feel Sandy’s desires and sometimes get impatient with her refusal to anchor her life in what is real rather than hopes that seem little more than a will-o-the-wisp. Then we see Marvin’s harshness and the way he’s been reduced by their subsistence living to focus only on what will help them survive and we hope that Sandy might succeed.
Between Sandy and Marvin, there is Thomson, a dying father figure, the inspiration to Marvin’s violence who rejected violence and yet refuses to reject either Marvin or Sandy. He is the one who forces a recognition of the value of death and it is no accident that he is also the bee keeper of the book.
Swarm is a challenging and occasionally a difficult read, but all the more valuable for that. It points to our present reluctance as a society to change. We are moving toward the brink, and Sandy’s story could be anyone’s story in a few years. The book is about not just the choices of a few characters, but the choices we’ve made as a species. I highly recommend it.
Great well written tale for any fan of stories on the other side of the apocalypse...
Top reviews from other countries
Reviewed in Canada 🇨🇦 on September 20, 2015