Review: Driftwood

Posted: August 7, 2020 by in Books We Like (4/5 single_star) Meta: Marie Brennan, Fantasy

“Last” is the name of a man you can hire to lead you through the confusing realm of Driftwood. But that’s not the name he was born with. If he can remember back that far.

First you need to understand Driftwood, a realm where dying civilizations get caught up into its black hole (not really any way to explain it, even though that’s not what it is). At first their neighbors disappear. Then their boundaries. Then they find themselves with new neighbors of different worlds, races, and languages. And all of them are moving toward the inexorable deterioration of their society until it disappears completely. It may take a few generations (depending on the life-expectancy of the natives), but their apocalypse is inevitable.

The very nature of Driftwood negates a recorded history. There can’t be a map, because it would be outdated before it could even be recorded. So how do you find help when you need it? How does anyone navigate the very different worlds, climates, and cultures in a place that is constantly changing?

You find Last and convince him to help you. For a price.

DRIFTWOOD by Marie Brennan is a post-apoclyptic realm where countries, cities, and races go to die. Except for one man--he's become legend.

No one knows how long Last has been among the deteriorating worlds of Driftwood, but no one remembers him not being here. And he remembers so many civilizations who have come and gone–including his own, but strangely he continues on. And he has a knack for moving among the worlds. But when he disappears, everyone wonders if maybe he’s finally succumbed to Driftwood’s life-sucking sinkhole. A mish-mash of people decide to memorialize him in their own way and gather together to re-tell stories about Last.

DRIFTWOOD is a collection of these stories and how Last made life more livable in Driftwood. How he helps people come to grips with post-apocalypse–and preserve some of their culture and dignity in the process. They are stories of a strange place that no one quite understands. Of a mixture of people who were never meant to be neighbors. And they are stories of coping with loss.

Marie Brennan never disappoints.

  • Recommended Age: 13+
  • Language: Not that I noticed
  • Violence: Some death, but nothing bloody; domestic abuse referenced
  • Sex: None

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