The Sky Is Falling

The Sky Is Falling

A Novel

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From the winner of the 2006 Marian Engel Award comes a funny, absorbing and timely novel about fear in our time.

On a spring day in 2004, Jane Z. a physician's wife and mother of a teenage son, opens her morning newspaper and is shocked to see a familiar face on the front page. Sonia, a lost friend accused of terrorism, has just been released after twenty years in prison. It all comes flooding back to Jane, how twenty years before her life took a very different course.

At nineteen, Jane rents a room in a shared student house with a mismatched trio of idealists: Sonia, who yearns to save the world's children from nuclear war; the Marxist-leaning Dieter; and the anarcho-feminist-pacifist Pete. A bookish misfit, her radical housemates quickly draw Jane into NAG!, a non-violent, anti-nuclear direct action group.

To Jane, who is studying Russian and Russian literature, her compatriots, with their utopian dreams and youthful pathos, soon seem Chekhovian to her.

Meanwhile, NAG! plans its most ambitious action, crossing the border into the United States to chain themselves to the Boeing factory fence. Tension increases as the group mounts each successive protest, until a bomb explodes and changes everything.

The Sky Is Falling deftly intertwines themes of first love, sexual confusion, and the dread of nuclear disaster with the comical infighting of a cast of well-meaning political activists, and the timelessness of the great Russian classics. A story for our own age of paranoia and terror, Caroline Adderson's witty, accomplished novel returns the reader to another fearful era, when the world teetered on the brink of nuclear annihilation and the end of world seemed inevitable.

Publisher: Toronto :, Thomas Allen Publishers
Copyright Date: ♭2010
ISBN: 9780887626135
Branch Call Number: Online eBook
Characteristics: 1 online resource
text file, rda
Additional Contributors: OverDrive, Inc

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Apr 29, 2019

One of the funniest books I've read in years.

No pratfalls, but just a sly understanding of ignorant, naive and well-intentioned young people in the 1980s.

It neatly puts to the rest the common "conspiracy" beliefs around bombings and other civil strife. No, sorry, no over-arching "mandate" or "agenda", just misguided emotionalism and, to some extent, peer pressure and the wish to "belong" to something, somehow...

And a sadly tragic consequences. Make a mistake when you're 19...and wear it for decades afterward.

Terrific writing, engaging characters, true-to-life story.

Sep 01, 2018

An excellent depiction of young idealists, a person who gets caught up with them and an era of extreme uncertainty. I enjoyed it.

Jan 05, 2016

A pretty heavy topic but still a pretty good read. It flipped back and forth between the 80's and 2004 and I really enjoyed the Vancouver setting.

May 20, 2013

This book is not good on several levels. The author was perhaps on the periphery of some scene in the 1980s in Kits but the characters are not activists; they are just teenagers. Overall, the story is not convincing and is full of stereotypes.

Dec 22, 2011

Fantastic book. Immediately re-read the last chapter when I finished because I didn't want it to be over. Loved the characters - I wanted to be friends with them!

Recommend this book.

debwalker Feb 20, 2011

"A bookish, middle-aged mother remembers an emotional time when she shared a home with a group of political activists. As can be gathered from the title, it doesn't go well. Moral of the story: Politics and shared bathrooms don't mix."
Nathan Whitlock

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