Genesis by Bernard Beckett
I picked up this book because it was making the rounds with some of my blogging friends, but they were all very mysterious about it! And with good reason, really. It is such a short book with so much packed into it, that I’m at a bit of a loss as to how to write a plot description without giving everything away, so I’m going to let you read the publisher’s description of this one, although only the first half of it, because I think the second half gives away too much:
Set on a remote island in a post-apocalyptic, plague-ridden world, this electrifying novel is destined to become a modern classic.
Anax thinks she knows her history. She’d better. She’s now facing three Examiners, and her grueling all-day Examination has just begun. If she passes, she’ll be admitted into the Academy—the elite governing institution of her utopian society.
But Anax is about to discover that for all her learning, the history she’s been taught isn’t the whole story. And that the Academy isn’t what she believes it to be.
I’ve got to say, at the beginning of Genesis I had no idea whatsoever what was going on. Zero, zip, nada. In a good way, though. I felt that Beckett plopped me down in the middle of a very real situation and led me through the discovery of what exactly was happening in this world. I loved that journey of discovery through Anax’s examination. What lost me a bit was the ending. This is a mild spoiler, but there is a bit of a twist ending and, honestly, I figured out what most of it was going to be a little more than half way through the book, which left me feeling sort of disappointed at the end.
I think this is a very good and interesting book overall that raises some really interesting questions. It would be a really great book club book, because there are so many questions raised by this book. Recommended.
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