As the world succumbs to the ravages of climate change and provisions become scarce, octogenarian Rachel Leopold maintains a garden and grows heirloom apples in the utopian community of Arcadia, taking up arms against its attackers. A former glaciologist, Rachel also secretly researches methods to reverse the polar ice melt, which could save Earth's dwindling population and prevent the release of methane pockets under the permafrost. As she nears success, Arcadia comes under fire from the multinational group CRISPR. To save Arcadia and possibly the world, Rachel must decode clues left by her late ex-husband, Julian, while around her the walls of Arcadia are breached by bots and her trust in her compatriots is tested. VERDICT This fast read picks up after the death of Julian, the protagonist of Splinterlands, and can be enjoyed as a stand-alone sequel to the first book in the series. Its sense of urgency inspires readers to keep going and a pale glimmer of hope at the end is welcome after the quick, harrowing ride.—Jennifer Beach, Longwood Univ. Lib., Farmville, VA
"By taking us on a cautionary journey into a future planetary collapse where the term “one per cent” is redefined in a terrifying way, John Feffer forces us to look deeply at our own society’s blindness to ecological apocalypse and greed. But the novel’s enchantment goes beyond dystopia: the quest for salvation depends on a crusty female octogenarian who would make Wonder Woman salivate with envy."
"A worthy sequel to the thought-provoking Splinterlands, Frostlands is triumphant and absorbing science fiction, full of ecological and societal warnings. It is a unique and imaginative look at a future Earth scarred by environmental neglect.... In a short space, Frostlands touches on a variety of intriguing subjects. The killer drones and network-hacking warfare of Frostlands aren’t wild speculative fantasy of a remote future; Feffer is focused on the next fifty years or so, with an eye toward avoiding the mostly bleak landscape that Frostlands so vividly captures. Rachel and Arcadia represent the ability of humans to adapt and fight back against even self-inflicted environmental and societal wounds; their story is both edifying and entertaining."
"Devotees of near-future science fiction adventures will root for resolute and energetic Rachel on her quest to save Earth."
Praise for Splinterlands:
Feffer’s confident recitation of world collapse is terrifyingly plausible, a short but encompassing look at world tragedy. "—Publishers Weekly, Starred Review“Feffer’s book is a wild ride through a bleak future, casting a harsh, thought-provoking light on that future’s modern-day roots.”—Foreword Reviews"Just as it’s especially enjoyable to read science fiction written by real scientists, Feffer offers readers a uniquely well-researched and historically robust argument for why the world turns out the way that it does, which makes it all the more relevant—and frightening. "—Washington City Paper "Readers who enjoy dystopian stories that hold more than a light look at political structures and their downfall will more than appreciate the in-depth approach John Feffer takes in his novel."—Midwest Book Review"Splinterlands is a short and powerful dystopian novel, framed as an all-too-credible account of what might happen in our lifetimes."—Climate and Capitalism"John Feffer is our 21st-century Jack London, and, like the latter's Iron Heel, Splinterlands is a vivid, suspenseful warning about the ultimate incompatibility between capitalism and human survival."—Mike Davis“Feffer’s book, in short, is provocative in the best sense….The dystopic alternative, illustrated so powerfully in Feffer’s Splinterlands, provides us with powerful motivation to shape a better, less splintered, future.” —W. J. Astore"Splinterlands paints a startling portrait of a post-apocalyptic tomorrow that is fast becoming a reality today. Fast-paced, yet strangely haunting, Feffer's latest novel looks back from 2050 on the disintegration of world order told through the story of one broken family and offers a disturbing vision of what might await us all if we don't act quickly."—Barbara Ehrenreich, author of Nickle and Dimed and Living with a Wild God, and founder of the Economic Hardship Reporting Project“A chilling portrayal of where the politics of division could take us. Now I only hope he writes the sequel to tell us how to avoid it!”—Naomi Oreskes, co-author of The Collapse of Western Civilization