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Book Reviews (2020) > Book Review: Severance

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message 1: by Sandy (new)

Sandy B (sbenemer) | 120 comments Post apocalyptic novel by Ling Ma about the effects of the “Shen Virus” (seen in the story as largely overrunning Manhattan and the world, and literally imported from China through product orders placed in the gig economy). The novel was set in 2011 but written over 2yrs who before quarantining. N95 masks and working from home were commonplace terms. I was fascinated and horrified by a lot of the details the author got right (probably due to extensive research rather than clairvoyance). But the lead character, 2nd generation Chinese immigrant/millennial Candace Chen, never fully hooked me. The novel jumps (chapter by chapter, which started to feel laborious) between her time with parents and boyfriend before The End, and time in isolation wandering deserted NY streets afterwards. Definitely an interesting premise, but the novel drew a lot of parallels to Station 11, which based on reviews appears to be the superior book.

Rated this 3/5 stars. Looking forward to Station 11 but only after a few lighter books to cleanse my reading palate.


message 2: by Eric (new)

Eric Schatz | 375 comments Mod
Station 11 is on my list for this year too. Enjoyed The Glass Hotel, which came out earlier this year.


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