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The Book of Flora

(The Road to Nowhere #3)

3.85  ·  Rating details ·  1,074 ratings  ·  156 reviews
In this Philip K. Dick Award–winning series, one woman’s unknowable destiny depends on a bold new step in human evolution.

In the wake of the apocalypse, Flora has come of age in a highly gendered post-plague society where females have become a precious, coveted, hunted, and endangered commodity. But Flora does not participate in the economy that trades in bodies. An anathem
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Published April 23rd 2019 by Brilliance Audio
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Average rating 3.85  · 
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 ·  1,074 ratings  ·  156 reviews

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May 10, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley, fantasy-sf
The Book of Flora is the 3rd volume in The Road to Nowhere trilogy, a dystopia set in the aftermath of a disease that wiped out 98% of the human population. As the name suggest, this book centres around Flora, one of the characters I enjoyed in the 2nd instalment. As such, I was excited to start reading about her adventures. Meg Elison's writing is beautiful as ever, however the book soon became a dictionary of sexual challenges and orientations. While I appreciated a moderate amount of diversit ...more

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The Book of the Unnamed Midwife: ★★★★
The Book of Etta: ★★★★★

This is book three in The Road to Nowhere se
May 23, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Ok, yeah, no. It almost breaks my heart because it goes against my very nature, but I can't take it anymore.

The writing style hasn't suddenly deteriorated or anything, but I don't care about ANY of the characters here. I don't care about Flora's bad childhood, I don't care about the state of the world all these years after the end which we experienced in book 1, I don't care about the other characters, I don't care about the introduced ideas about sexuality and reproduction, I don't
This book is a worthy successor to the previous two that began with The Book of the Unnamed Midwife, but it DOES require some managed expectations.

Such as?

The book is not plotted traditionally. Rather, it reads from the past and present in equal measure and really focuses on the full gamut of gender issues. And I don't mean just men and women but all states of transformation and gender identity.

And it does it in the bleak and dismal post-apocalyptic world that Elison killed us w
July 2019:
***Y’all need to stop sleeping on this dystopian gem of a series!***

How could anyone who loves books not fall in love with a series that, throughout all the harshness of a post-apocalyptic world, is itself in love with the reading, writing, and safekeeping of books!

December 2018:
*in which she fangirls*

This was insanely good!

I was already a huge fan of Meg Elison’s first two books in this phenomenal “Road to Nowhere” series and having my request for an early reader’s copy appro/>*in/>***Y’all
***Note: I received a copy curtesy of Netgalley and 47North in exchange for an honest review.

The third and final book picks up where "The Book of Etta" leaves off, in the community of Ommun, the underground mormon city. Present and past alternate, the story going back and forth between an older Flora writing in her diary on the island of Bambritch and flashbacks of Flora’s past journeys.

It was nice to reconnect with this series, although I didn’t enjoy this last installment as much
Kyra Leseberg (Roots & Reads)
2.5 stars

Meg Elison's sci-fi dystopian trilogy began with The Book of the Unnamed Midwife.  A fever has spread, killing the majority of woman and children and making childbirth deadly.  In the aftermath, the world is a dangerous place to be a woman.  Men roam in packs searching for surviving females, a valuable commodity in post apocalyptic America.  
An unnamed woman travels from California dressing as a man and using different names; she describes her journey in a notebook.  She's sea
Tudor Vlad
Mar 07, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
The reason it gets only four stars is that there is not a lot of plot in this book and past storylines are ignored or not given a satisfactory conclusion. With that said, I still thoroughly enjoyed this third book in a trilogy that has been one of my favorite little gems (seriously, more people should, at the very least, give the first book in this series a chance). Meg Elison is such a good writer.
Jan 14, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: did-not-finish
„Let’s see what I can grow into, see how long it takes me to reach the light.“

The first three chapters were not an easy read. First Flora‘s pretty horrible childhood and then Ommun and Alma—I am not a fan of her. This book was fighting an uphill battle to make me like it from the start.

Reading this back to back with Book of Etta would probably have work well. I struggled to place everybody, as it was a while since I read Etta and the author made no effort to explain things.
This instalment of the series seemed less concerned with the story and more focussed on sexuality. Not the act of having sex (although that was there also) but all the variations on gender. This would have been fine as part of the story but Elison seemed to be really shoving it in your face. You would get a bit of story and then pages of how this character was a girl but not a girl, etc. And it was so anti-heterosexual male. This story seemed to want to say that if you weren’t feminine then your ...more
Stacie C
Apr 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019, e-book-arcs
And now we have the very last book in the Road to Nowhere series. It has been quite the ride, journey and experience. This review will hold spoilers for the first two books, but I will try my best not to spoil this last book in this review.

It has been over one hundred years since the Dying has taken place. And the army is on its way to Bambritch Island. The refugees have been pouring in. The leader, sometimes described as a man other times described as a woman, has been destroying c
Nov 23, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Being a completist isn’t really all that great when it comes to books. Mostly it gets you stuck reading books all the way through that you might have abandoned otherwise. And yes, it is the completist in me that requested this book on Netgalley and set off reading it, just to see how it all turns out in Ellison’s womencentric dystopia. Small mercies, this was the last in a trilogy, trilogies are infinitely more manageable than series, although not as great as standalones. Book 1 was pretty good ...more
Jan 09, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed the first two books in the series more. The Book of Flora fell flat for me. I was expecting more. While the story is engaging and the characters are likeable, I just couldn't find a connection.
Bryn Clark
As soon as I received this ARC from Netgalley, (so thank you so much for letting me read this for an honest review, NG, you guys are doing the goddess’ work) I immediately read the first two books for context on Kindle Unlimited and then dove into this one. That was 3 books in four days, I’m wiped.

The first book was breathtaking and I loved it but Etta was too hardened for me and Flora was too ambivalent. I wanted to adore these last two books so much, but they both left me wanting.

The Book of
May 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love this series so much and if you are a fellow fan about to read this last installment, I recommend you first re-read the other books; that is what I wish I had done because Elison doesn't give much of a detailed reminder about mentions of the past and I'm a forgetful reader!

This book really delved into sexual and gender identities, into evolution, into human nature. So good. Please read.
Jun 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I haven’t read the first two books of The Road to Nowhere series, but I think it’s perfectly fine to read this one on its own. In fact, though there is a carry over of characters and story from the first two books, I think it works really well as a stand alone.

I went into this book with no expectations and was immediately struck by the prose. It’s not flowery at all and is, in fact, easy to read, but there’s a certain cadence to it that I love. It’s the kind of prose that enhances an
Oct 03, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
As you all know by now, I love a good dystopian novel and a series is an even better treat! This is the third book in the Road to Nowhere series, set years after a plague has wiped out most of the female population and made childbirth extremely rare and deadly. I really enjoyed the first two books in this series, since they were paced well and I loved the characters (also, if it’s been a while since you read the first two, definitely read a synopsis on major plot points!). The concepts of fluid ...more
Cynthia (Bingeing On Books)
I received this ARC from NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.

First of all, I absolutely loved The Unnamed Midwife and I really enjoyed The Book of Etta. However, this one fell a little flat for me.

The book picks up where The Book of Etta leaves off, with the survivors of Nowhere seeking refuge in the underground city of Ommun. Due to a number of clashes between several of the survivors and the prophet in charge of Ommun, Eddy, Alice and Flora decide to set out on t
Renny Barcelos
5 stars is, unfortunately, the most Goodreads allows me to award this book but in my heart of hearts, it deserves a thousand shiny stars.


This is the final tale in a story that starts in our current time and goes to a future where humanity starts again. In The Book of Flora we finally get to know more about her, a horsewoman, so kind and so used to not being fully wanted nor accepted that she made it her strength. She took what life gave her and turne
Mar 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: good-queer-scifi
"We have the complete story of our attempts at civilisation, in all the forms it has taken. Every one with the same goals, every one taking a different route to get there. (...) this is the work that women do. We keep the fire of civilisation burning, by collecting and protecting stories. It's what we have always done."

The Book of Flora is a rallying cry to queers, a fierce and unapologetic chronicle of queer love and life in a post-apocalyptic world. It's about love and about loss and jealou
Michael Howley
Apr 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I thought the first two books on the Road to Nowhere asked interesting questions about gender and sexuality, but they were just warm-ups for this tour de force.

Having established her characters, Meg unleashes them into her world on a veritable Odyssey. Each stop along the way presents new ideas of what civilization could be. Flora, Eddy, Alice, and their company crisscross the reborn world in search of a place to call home, where they might be judged and valued for their hands and mi
Immediate re-read: Sorry, I couldn't resist it! ( AGAIN!) x
This book is not only a continuation of already great series. it is masterfully written and covers so many very important topics with precision and levels of immersion I didn't even knew could be written into a story - AMAZED!
Aug 19, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019, lgbtq, dystopia
The last installment of the Road to Nowhere Trilogy was less on action and plot and more on deconstructing issues of identity, gender, and non-binary representation. I'll admit that I missed the tension that was wrought in the plotting of the first two books, but Elison's writing is so good and engaging, I still wanted to keep with the characters until the conclusion. The first in the trilogy, The Book of the Unnamed Midwife is definitely the standout - brimming with creativity, a taut plot, and a fant ...more
Dec 19, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oct 07, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
A review of the series: a post apocalyptic dystopia that knows trans folk exist. I loved the exploration into the many different ways humans might deal with creating a new society after a huge killing off of most of humanity (and of that, mostly women).
May 22, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
“Everybody has a body, and every body has a story.” The entire Road to Nowhere series is known for its exceptional treatment of gender and sexuality in a post-apocalyptic world, and The Book of Flora leans particularly hard into these themes. Perhaps a little too hard, as it reads more like a whirlwind tour of different systems of gender (often oppressive) instead of a cohesive story. (The ending! Is deeply baffling!!) Some bits are cool, like how do you deal with abortion and hormone therapy without modern ph ...more
May 04, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

My mind is boggling at the ending - as I was 80% through, it was dawning on me but still ?!??????!!???
Aug 01, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A ripping second half made up for a slow start. A worthy companion to The Midwife and Etta.
Sandra "Jeanz"
After finishing The Book Of Etta I felt I had to start the next book right away. It is really rare that I will read books in a series back to back, but this series …is addictive reading. I didn’t even write my review for The Book Of Etta before starting this one!
This book has these genres listed for it Sci-Fi, Post-Apocalyptic and Dystopian which I agree with but, would add it also has action and suspense. The book also touches on LGBTQIA issues too within the context of the book and peopl
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Meg Elison is the author of THE BOOK OF THE UNNAMED MIDWIFE, a post-apocalyptic feminist speculative novel, Tiptree recommendation, and winner of the 2014 Philip K. Dick Award. The sequel to MIDWIFE, THE BOOK OF ETTA, was published in February 2017. Elison is a high school dropout and a graduate of UC Berkeley. Find her online, where she is always saying something:

Other books in the series

The Road to Nowhere (3 books)
  • The Book of the Unnamed Midwife (The Road to Nowhere, #1)
  • The Book of Etta (The Road to Nowhere #2)
“It’s no great crime to live as a man. Men are plentiful and everyone understands why you do it. Women lying with women is a waste, but you’ll hardly get killed for it. Living as a woman without being one is the thing that always stirs hate and violence. As if there is some great deception in it. As if it is the worst kind of fraud. Yet a woman who cannot breed or will not try is never the same sort of problem. And women past the end of their blood are no threat. I am no different from them.” 0 likes
“Connie was agreeable in that way that children are when they realize they’ve annoyed a good and generous caretaker, and they want back into good graces. They” 0 likes
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