The Future of Another Timeline by Annalee Newitz
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
I would give this novel five stars for just the cool research put into this time-travel novel, but fortunately, there's a lot more going on here than just clever interpretations of history. Or rather, alternate histories mixed in among branches of a time war.
Ah, but who are the combatants? Is the whole novel about altering history so some faction or another comes out on top? Or is it an intensely personal journey with a lot of emotional punch behind it?
Why can't it be both? And it is.
Of course, I was hooked on all the girl power and the early Punk scene. This is my jam. Give me anything that says freedom and I AM ALIVE, throw me into a mosh and spout the original meaning of an=without archy=goverment without all the BS about bombs and murders and crap, and I'm there.
And, indeed, I was here for almost the entire novel. I may not be a woman but I'm totally in the whole debate. We all need to be heard. We all need to be respected. And that's kinda the point.
When it came to people like Comstock, the real one that boasted about how many women he convinced to commit suicide when all they wanted was abortions, we can't find a more detestable villain. Or at least, I can't. But worse, there are still a lot of people who think like this. And that's also a big plot push in the novel... misogyny taken to amazing extremes.
Is it any wonder that Punk is the real hero, here? When totalitarian jerkwads are a force of history? Disempowering all women across the board? Okay, maybe this is a common enough plot thread in modern SF. Or not even SF.
But the proof is in the execution. And believe me, there are quite enough executions in this novel. :)
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