People of the Book--video
"Prudent Action"

Parable of the Sower

Parable of the Sower (Earthseed, #1)Parable of the Sower by Octavia E. Butler
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Not set in a post-apocalyptic future as is so common, but in the midst of social decline and disruption brought on by climate change, growing income inequality, a rise in drug use, violence, and poverty. Reading the book right now was frightening.

Lauren, the hero, grows up in the 2020's in a walled neighborhood of eleven homes in southern California where it rains once every six years. The neighbors must work together to defend their neighborhood, grow their own food, and educate themselves. Some are tempted away when a corporate town opens nearby, promising security but a form of wage slavery associated with Steinbeck novels or the Pullman Strike.

Lauren rejects the religion of her Baptist minister father as a new religion, called Earthseed, is revealed to her. For Earthseed, God is change and change is inevitable. But change can be affected by what one does to prepare for it and respond to it. She is something of a Cassandra in her neighborhood, but becomes a leader of people by the end.

There is a second Earthseed book, which I will soon have to read, as this one left me hanging and wanting more. I'm curious that it has not been made into a Netflix or Hulu series, as it so grippingly fits our cultural moment.

View all my reviews

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