Sinking Islands by Cai Emmons
Sinking Islands continues the story of Bronwyn Artair, a scientist who possesses the power to influence the natural forces of the Earth. After several successful interventions, including one in Siberia, she has gone into hiding, worried about unintended consequences of her actions, as well as about the ethics of operating solo. But circumstances call her to action again, and an idea takes shape: What if she could impart her skill to other people? Gathering a few kindred souls from climate-troubled places around the world—Felipe from São Paulo, where drought conditions are creating strains on day-to-day life; Analu and his daughter Penina from a sinking island in the South Pacific; and Patty from the tornado-ridden plains of Kansas—she takes them to the wilds of Northern New Hampshire where she tries to teach them her skill. The novel, realistic but for the single fantastical element, explores how we might become more attuned to the Earth and act more collaboratively to solve the enormity of our climate problem.
“This prescient tale of a not-too-distant eco-dystopia will have readers on the edge of their seats. Shifting between vivid characters and far-flung settings, Sinking Islands spins a potent story about what happens when the unbelievable becomes reality, when the earth goes mad and takes all of us along for the ride. A captivating read.”—Diana Abu-Jaber, author of Birds of Paradise
“With a dazzling array of characters and locations and just enough magic to surprise and enchant us, Sinking Islands explores how connection, mentorship, and dedication might alter the course of lives and planet. This novel is an ecofeminist gem.”—Sharma Shields, author of The Cassandra
Cai Emmons is the author of four novels—His Mother’s Son, The Stylist, Weather Woman, Sinking Islands—and a story collection, Vanishing. She holds a BA from Yale University and two MFAs from New York University in film and from the University of Oregon in fiction. Before turning to fiction, Emmons wrote plays and screenplays. Winner of a Student Academy Award, an Oregon Book Award, and the Leapfrog Fiction Prize, and a finalist for the Narrative Magazine and Missouri Review fiction prizes, she has taught at a variety of institutions, most recently in the Creative Writing Program at the University of Oregon. She lives in Eugene, Oregon.