Unsheltered novel speaks to our times
UNSHELTERED interweaves the past and the present to explore the human capacity for resilience and compassion in times of great upheaval.
International best-seller Barbara Kingsolver, the author of The Lacuna, Flight Behaviour and The Poisonwood Bible and recipient of numerous literary awards, returns with a compelling novel that presents the world as it is, but with optimism even in the most difficult of circumstances.
It's 2016 in Vineland. Meet Willa Knox; a woman who stands braced against an upended world that seems to hold no mercy for her shattered life and family, or the crumbling house that contains her.
Turn back to 1871 in Vineland. Thatcher Greenwood, the new science teacher, is a fervent advocate of the work of Charles Darwin, and he is keen to communicate his ideas to his students. But those in power in Thatcher's small town have no desire for a new world order. Thatcher and his teachings are not welcome.
Both Willa and Thatcher resist the prevailing logic. They are asked to pay a high price for their courage. But, both also find inspiration, and an unlikely kindred spirit in Mary Treat, a scientist, adventurer and anachronism.
Unsheltered is a testament to both the resilience and persistent myopia of the human condition. It explores the foundations we build in life, spanning time and place to give us all a clearer look at those around us and perhaps ourselves.
Published by Faber, Barbara Kingsolver's Unsheltered is available in bookshops from this month. RRP$32.99.