by Omar El Akkad
Editor: Pan MacMillan
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War] created as a spectre of a post-apocalyptic universe like Cormac McCarthy made The Road, and as devastating a look at the fallout as the national events on an American family of Philip Roth did in The Conspiracy Against AmericaEl Akkad wrote a novel that not only has maps of the tragic effects of violence on a woman and her family, but also becomes a disturbing parable about the disastrous consequences of war on ordinary civiliansMichiko Kakutani, the New York Times Chestnut Sarat, born in Louisiana, is only six during the Second American Civil War broke out in 2074But even she knows that oil is outlawed, that Louisiana is half underwater, that unmanned drones fill the skyAnd when her father is killed and her family is forced into the Camp of Patience for displaced people, very quickly, she begins to be shaped by her time and in a place until, finally, thanks to the influence of a mysterious official, she is transformed into a formidable instrument of war.His story is his nephew, the Benjamin de la Châtaigne, born during the war – Miraculous part of the Generation of now an old man facing the dark secret of his past, his family, his role in the conflict and, in particular, that of his aunt, a woman who saved his life while destroying incalculable others
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