A New York Times Notable Book
Louise Erdrich, the New York Times bestselling, National Book Award-winning author of LaRose and The Round House, paints a startling portrait of a young woman fighting for her life and her unborn child against oppressive forces that manifest in the wake of a cataclysmic event.
The world as we know it is ending. Evolution has reversed itself, affecting every living creature on earth. Science cannot stop the world from running backwards, as woman after woman gives birth to infants that appear to be primitive species of humans. Twenty-six-year-old Cedar Hawk Songmaker, adopted daughter of a pair of big-hearted, open-minded Minneapolis liberals, is as disturbed and uncertain as the rest of America around her. But for Cedar, this change is profound and deeply personal. She is four months pregnant.
Though she wants to tell the adoptive parents who raised her from infancy, Cedar first feels compelled to find her birth mother, Mary Potts, an Ojibwe living on the reservation, to understand both her and her baby’s origins. As Cedar goes back to her own biological beginnings, society around her begins to disintegrate, fueled by a swelling panic about the end of humanity.
There are rumors of martial law, of Congress confining pregnant women. Of a registry, and rewards for those who turn these wanted women in. Flickering through the chaos are signs of increasing repression: a shaken Cedar witnesses a family wrenched apart when police violently drag a mother from her husband and child in a parking lot. The streets of her neighborhood have been renamed with Bible verses. A stranger answers the phone when she calls her adoptive parents, who have vanished without a trace. It will take all Cedar has to avoid the prying eyes of potential informants and keep her baby safe.
A chilling dystopian novel both provocative and prescient, Future Home of the Living God is a startlingly original work from one of our most acclaimed writers: a moving meditation on female agency, self-determination, biology, and natural rights that speaks to the troubling changes of our time.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Louise Erdrich turns her considerable gifts toward a near-future dystopia in which both the social and natural orders have broken down. Cedar Hawk Songmaker would be happy to be pregnant with her first child, were it not for the fact that evolution seems to be reversing itself, and—with sinister implications that recall The Handmaid’s Tale—human reproduction has become perilous and political. As Cedar goes on the run again and again, Erdrich’s lyrical prose shocks and appeases. Future Home of the Living God is a brutal allegory of motherhood and the survival of the species.
Set in Minnesota in a dystopian future in which evolution is going haywire, much of this startling new work of speculative fiction by Erdrich (LaRose) takes the form of a diary by pregnant Cedar Hawk Songmaker addressed to her unborn child. Happily raised and well-educated by her adopted parents Sera and Glen Songmaker, Cedar decides nevertheless to visit her Ojibwe birth family on the rez up north. But times are strange: "our world is running backward. Or forward. Or maybe sideways." Flora and fauna are taking on prehistoric characteristics, and there is talk of viruses. It isn't long before pregnant women are being rounded up. Cedar meets up again with her baby's father, Phil, and for a while she hides with him. But eventually she is caught by the authorities, who reveal nothing about what is happening. A hospital incarceration, escape, violence, and murder ensue as Cedar and other pregnant women she meets along the way helped by the valiant Sera, Cedar's adoptive mother will do anything to protect themselves and their babies. Erdrich's characters are brave and conscientious, but none of them really come across as people; they act mostly as vehicles for Erdrich's ideas. Those ideas, however reproductive freedom, for one, and faith in and respect for the natural world are strikingly relevant. Erdrich has written a cautionary tale for this very moment in time.
So glad that I borrowed this from the library and did not have to purchase
I dislike to use the word hate however I hated this book. This book is the prime example of reading a book just because its new (that I am guilty of getting sucked into from time to time) & I picked it out because it's based in Minnesota where I'm from ~ I wonder why it's rated with 4 stars here I just want to know why someone liked this book. Then at some point she writes "of course I vaccinated myself after high school because you didn't when I was growing up" UMMM... this had absolutely nothing to do with anything other than the world is "ending" & they're medically kidnapping you so if they wanted to inject you with poison they're going to do it anyways ~ probably why this book got put up near the front at the Bookstores. I've never left a review before but I read this a year ago & still have so much ill feelings (waste of time thankfully not money).