Book Review: Iglu by Jacob Sackin

Most serious observers agree that we have already begun to see the effects of climate change and global warming.   Author Jacob Sackin projects a hundred or more years in the future and envisions a world in which much of the population of the continental United States is being relocated to Alaska where an entirely mercenary private army controlled by the US President fights against Alaska natives and attempts to oversee massive construction projects for the enormous relocation.

Iglu is not exactly science fiction,  and does not fit neatly into the future history sub-genre.   It’s not exactly a fable or fairy tale either,  although the story of  April,  an Inupiaq teen ager who finds herself journeying alone across a very strange and different Alaska (from the one we know today) in some ways encompasses all of these genres,  while being a fairly short and highly readable tale.    The people that April meets are at once archetypes of the remaining groups of people in this post-apocalyptic Alsaka and at the same time well drawn characters who bring alive this very strange setting.

There is an extensive timeline included in an appendix which makes clear the larger historical events leading up to and following April’s particular story.    April’s story is actually much smaller of course than the framework of mass migration following climate change,  but Sackin skillfully intersperses fictitious news reports and transcripts from government meetings that place April’s story within the larger context.    I found the concepts fascinating and greatly enjoyed Iglu.    If you’re a fan of any of the genres mentioned (science fiction, future history, fanatasy, fables) I would definitely Recommend you give Iglu a try.

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