Rogue AI, fine vegetarian dining, a murderous sock monkey, an evil fast food Corp—in 2043 Olivia Ermine will face them all! She survives The Great Warming safe within the Cascadian Federation. Yet, her blood holds the key to the VanDirks Corporation’s domination of the planet, and they will stop at nothing to get it. In a haze of thunderbud and fog, through time and tide, between the land and sea, the earth and smoldering stars, an ancient mystery seeks its revenge. A darkly comedic, genre-bending journey through solarpunk sci-fi and science fantasy awaits.
Things are great! The Great Warming proceeds apace—Florida is a soggy nub aslither in pythons. The Great Erasure’s come and gone, the black mirror shattered and the Great Autarchy’s Regime with it. The Murder2.0 networked smart-toaster surveillance state is kaput, as are financial markets, all digital records, and those pesky killer robots. Viva the Quantum Era! The Great Balkanization continues, the West Coast seceded, now a military and vertical farming empire powered by the sun. The border’s secure out to the old Highway 15 DMZ, where Cascadia ends and Montanastan begins; home to militias, mass crucifixions, denominational nut-jobbery, and the ravages of paleomegavirus.
Olivia's left her chaotic globetrotting life behind and returned to her ancestral family home in Redwood, a charming Cascadian university town, a safe oasis in a turbulent world. The Pynchon Academy comes with new friends, enemies, and lovers. Yet, the transition’s had a few quirks…disturbing dreams and now visions of a scruffy, saucer-eyed rogue AI with a penchant for levitation and force fields. To make matters worse, she’s stalked by a maniacal, straight razor wielding, dandified sock monkey. Meanwhile, a planetary fast-food mega-corp founded in the 1600s—in the slave trade—is after her famous uncle’s artistic legacy and just maybe her uncle too.
Can she beat the rising tide?
The Redwood Revenger is the first book in the trilogy; Red Bush is the second, and Red Root is the third.
Charming & funny near-future fun!
The Redwood Revenger is a well-crafted tansu chest of a story with plenty of secret compartments, humor, and surprises. The characters are interesting, diverse, and well-developed. The dialogue is well-written too. Ultimately, for me, it is the sheer depth and originality of the world that drew me in and kept me there. It is near-future dystopic adventure brimming with creativity, so the lush descriptions can sometimes slow the story’s pace (at first), but they are charming and slyly funny. I found myself transported to Redwood, a college town located in Cascadia, a new utopian country made from the West Coast states and BC. It was created after the dystopian Great Warming and decades of political turmoil had fragmented the U.S. Our heroine, Olivia Ermine, has been traveling but is now safe, settled in a pleasing old Victorian house with her beloved Uncle Ernie, an artist who became her guardian after she was orphaned as a kid. There’s a coming-of-age vibe as we see Olivia’s new life through her 17-year-old eyes; new school (the aptly named Pynchon Academy), new friends, and the slow realization that she is very much connected to Redwood’s violent past. Make no mistake, the book is definitely written for adults. The villain appears immediately (not a spoiler), an Evil Sock Monkey who seems hell-bent on destroying her. The book’s other villain is a worldwide fast-food corporation captained by the sincerely melodramatic Mars Van Dirk. Aside from making friends, her sexuality, and recovering from years of being on the run, Olivia must figure out what the VanDirks Corporation wants from her uncle, how the Sock Monkey fits into it all, and how her parents really died. Looking forward to reading the next books!