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3.3 out of 5 stars13
3.3 out of 5 stars
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on 10 April 2013
This is a collection of short stories visualising our future as imagined by a number of well known authors. All proceeds are going to the stop climate chaos coalition. Some stories are better than others but the great majority are stimulating and thought provoking and a pleasure to read. I particularly enjoyed the stories by Joanne Harris, Alasdair Gray and Lawrence Norfolk. Buy it, read and think about where we are going
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on 2 January 2016
I actually picked this book up in the excellent book shop at Friends House in Euston when browsing. The cover drew me to the book, as an avid ecologist I was drawn to the theme and as a writer and futurist I was intrigued by the concept of writing short stories about the 'not so distant future'. So I took a punt and handed over my money.

I read the book mostly during the Paris Climate Talks during December 2015 and really engaged with the stories. The stories are mostly about 10 pages long so you can pick it up and put it down at regular intervals and you get a sense of satisfaction from working through the book in satisfying chunks.

The stories for the most part are stimulating, daring, different and cover a lot of environmental ground. They raise issues such as acid rain, homes of the future, buying meat on the black market, carbon rationing and the characters in many of the stories become familiar friends within a page or two.

My main disappointment would be the darker tones that are painted. No doubt, environmental degradation and changes to our climate pose incredible threats which must be taken very seriously, but as with many movies, the book on the whole paints a picture of a dystopian future. Of course, we love those kinds of stories, but I wonder whether a book with a faith perspective such as this could have started from the point of hope rather than incite fear - it takes just as much imagination, if not more to write from that angle, at least some of the time. Taking the darker route means that the reader has to do the work of thinking through the issues and searching for a hopeful outcome. For me, it has meant that I have grappled with the stories at some length and perhaps that is the point of the book. To push the reader to become more determined and engaged.

I have been recommending the book to friends and think it could work for a book club. Perhaps a Lenten reading group or similar would create space for good conversations. I really enjoyed the short stories from multiple authors - there is a breadth of thinking reflected in here and it will certainly stimulate readers with an interest in the issues. I found the first few stories hard going, but there are rewards for readers who persevere!

It is also great that all the author royalties go to the Stop Climate Chaos Coalition - a really strong and effective voice in the environmental movement.
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on 7 May 2016
For those of us who cannot see what sort of world our decendants will inhabit, this collection of short stories of fictional future scenarios stretches one's imagination with the possibilities presented. One story in particular forced me to do some probing into the language of "twitter" and "facebook" conversations, something I'd previously avoided like the plague. A book that forces one to explore new horizons of knowledge is certainly worth reading.
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on 1 September 2013
I enjoyed most of the stories although a lot of them painted a dark picture of the future of humanity - worth a read though
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on 2 June 2013
Big fan of futuristic stuff like John Wyndham's, and many stories in here didn't disappoint. Only a couple were a bit below par, but on the whole a very thought-provoking and enjoyable collection.
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on 27 May 2013
When writers write, they write about what moves them or amuses them. When they write to someone else's theme what happens? Writing to order is a necessary skill - for advertisers, PR folk, journalists, but can strip away conviction in someone spinning a tale. So what we have here, from excellent writers contributing to the entirely worthy theme of looking at our dodgy future, are stories that seem forced, trying too hard to illustrate a message and ending up dull. Did anyone have fun writing these? Doesn't feel like it.
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on 13 May 2013
I love this book! Packed with short stories of the future as imagined by authors, this book has something for everyone. Incredibly thought provoking.
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on 4 July 2013
Some very good stories, some good, some less good, none dull. Many thought-provoking.

This book should be required reading for anybody who aspires to power.
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on 19 October 2014
Found this to be hard work. I want to be entertained, not presented with so much doom and gloom. There are lighter stories in there but no, I don't like this.
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on 28 August 2013
Short stories with a strong message. Interesting read, often very pacey. Some stories a little more difficult to connect with than others.
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