It's no secret that I love Margaret Atwood. She is my favorite author and I collect everything that she has written. I've read pretty much everything (including poetry) she's written (well, not the new economic book or the book about writing). I was ridiculously excited to hear she had a new novel coming out and I bought it the day it came out.
I liked it. I didn't love it. I think I would have liked it more if I had reread Oryx and Crake first (which I loved) since the two books are connected. I also didn't know they were connected and since I have the memory of a goldfish when it comes to literature it took me half of the book to realize that the books were connected. Yes, I know this is pathetic. So what ended up happening was me reading this book having a nagging sensation that I'd read it before and then realizing that was because it was connected to Oryx and Crake.
In case you haven't read Oryx and Crake, The Year of the Flood is a dystopic novel that shows us a future where a horrible disease has wiped out most of humankind and the people left behind are in rough shape. It also shows us what things were like before the "waterless flood" (what the religious group God's Gardners called the plague) and things were not good. It's a world where genetic splicing, cloning and plastic surgery are favorite pastimes and the environment is a mess. A new fast food chain, Secret Burgers, is popular since meat of any kind is fairly rare. The burger is meat but it's tough to say what kind. Basically it's a hellish, sad place and yet, so many of the details aren't that big of a stretch from where we're at now.
If you've never read an Atwood book, you need to. Maybe start with Oryx and Crake before you tackle this one. Now I just need to sit down and read her new poetry book!