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on November 24, 2009
This book being the second book of a supposed trilogy, is made better reading the first book 'Oryx and Crake' before reading this. Atwood went out to write a companion to that book in more ways than one. The books share characters, timeline, as well as tone.

Her genius in this one is that almost everything is opposite in Flood when compaired to Oryx. In Oryx most of the characters are men, in flood thay are women. In Oryx the characters are well off and educated, in flood they are lower class and educated in the streets. In Oryx we are in the world of science, and in Flood we are in the Spiritual world. The further you get the more rich the experiance, and how true her world seems to become. All in all a wonderfull read.

If this is the second book in a trilogy, I am looking forward to the last book.
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on November 7, 2009
It's hard not to compare `The Year of the Flood' to `Oryx and Crake' Atwood's post-apocalyptic 2002 novel. While Flood is not a sequel to the previous novel, it is a companion piece, sharing a common place and time. It has been billed as a stand-alone story and while it's true that you can read `The Year of the Flood' without reading Oryx and Crake, one of the more interesting aspects of reading Flood is seeing how Atwood connects the dots between the two novels. It may not be necessary read O&C first to enjoy Flood, but it seems to me that a layer of the novel would be missing.

I enjoyed reading `The Year of the Flood' but I couldn't help but think how much better a novel Oryx and Crake was. It's a darker, more disturbing, and more complex novel than Flood. Atwood described O&C as "a joke-filled, fun-packed rollicking adventure story about the downfall of the human race." She was kidding (a little), but the bottom line is O&C is more ambitious, more perceptive, and more interesting than Flood.

The Year of the Flood also features a constant barrage of remarkable coincidences. Virtually all of humanity dies in a plague and yet it seems that the only survivors were people the two female protagonists knew and they keep running into each other. Jimmy from O&C keeps turning up and it strains credibility a little. I thought maybe Atwood would provide some explanation for why these people survive (aside from being isolated at the time of the plague) but nothing is offered. It appears that it is all just a coincidence, which ends up feeling a little too contrived and convenient.

The greatest strength of the novel is the richly imagined and fully developed religion that forms the core of the novel. "God's Gardeners" is a clever merging of religion and science. There is a satirical edge to God's Gardeners that provides the perfect venue for Atwood's razor sharp wit. The novel's narrative is interspersed with sermons from Adam One to his flock that are often amusing in their earnestness. For example, Adam One speaks to his struggling flock as they roam the wasteland following the waterless flood that has wiped out virtually all of humankind, speaking about one of their followers savagely killed by wild dogs he says: "...via a conduit of a wild dog pack she has now made the ultimate sacrifice to her fellow creatures and has become part of God's great dance of proteins."

All in all, I enjoyed The Year of the Flood. If you are in the mood for a post-apocalyptic novel and you haven't read Oryx and Crake, I highly recommend reading it first, in part because you will appreciate Year of the Flood more after reading it, but mostly because it is a much better novel. The Year of the Flood is well worth reading, if for no other reason than to experience God's Gardeners, it just pales in comparison to novels by Atwood like O&C and The Handmaid's Tale that tread on similar ground.
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on April 1, 2014
The Year of the Flood, the second book in the MaddAddam trilogy, came out 6 years after Oryx and Crake in 2009. It is not a sequel, but rather a companion to the first novel as it takes place on a concurrent time. Toby and Ren survived the epidemic that killed most of the human race. A series of flashbacks informs us that Toby was a therapist in a spa and Ren an exotic dancer in a nightclub. Even though the two women are very different, they have something in common: they were once members of the God’s Gardeners, a group of pacific, religious and ecological people who knew that the Waterless Flood was coming. The book follows Toby and Ren’s separate stories of survival both before and after the epidemic.

The Year of the Flood is more interesting and more engrossing than Oryx and Crake in large part thanks to the two main characters, Toby and Ren. They have more depth and are more likable than Jimmy, the crazy, self-destructive narrator of the first book in the MaddAddam trilogy. In addition, it’s fun to see other characters present in Oryx and Crake pop up from time to time. However, I found the discourses of the God’s Gardeners’ leader, Adam One, to be long and cumbersome at times, even though I understand that they were used to give the reader more insight about the cult. In the whole, this book was excellent, and I am looking forward to reading MaddAddam for the conclusion of the trilogy.

Please go to my blog, Cecile Sune - Bookobsessed, if you would like to read more reviews or discover fun facts about books and authors.
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on December 29, 2009
I received The Year of the Flood as a Christmas gift. In anticipation, I reread Oryx and Crake. Like many others, I too look forward to a third novel, which I hope takes us further into time than these two, to bring about a solution to Atwood's dissolution of the world.

This scary story makes me look at the life with different eyes, and reminds me why I have a set of herbal healing books on my shelf. God's Gardeners are wise, and to be commended, until one learns that some of them are instrumental in bringing about the destructive "waterless flood" their leader predicts.

One difference between the two books is who the adversaries are. In Oryx and Crake, the animals seem to be the most frightening enemies. The Year of the Flood has those same viscious intelligent animals, but adds a criminal element that also survives.

Yet the book ends with the possibility of forgiveness, at least from Toby's perspective, despite the fact that she has suffered at the hands of evil. Will the third book show a world where evil is overcome by love? Is forgiveness believable in that world or in this?

A very thought provoking book. Well done!
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on January 9, 2010
I thoroughly enjoyed this novel and appreciate Atwood's take on current environmental and corporate issues. Canada's Queen of the Written Word, author, poet and environmental activitist Margaret Atwood sat down with Spartan Youth Radio reporter Madeline Lemire as part of her Year of the Flood book tour. Hear Atwood's thoughts about her new book, the moon landing conspiracy, biotechnology, religion, the future of novels and ways to protect our environment. In her Globe and Mail blog, Atwood wrote that Lemire "was a credit to radio. She did a fine job of it: well-prepared, poised, and a million times friendlier than my first radio interviews back in 1969." Check it out at [...]
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on April 6, 2014
Didn't flow quite as well as Oryx & Crake. Character Development wasn't as strong either. Yet, there's a lot of storyline that unfolds in this second book of the trilogy. It's an essential part and still an exciting book just noticed my interest flagging during some parts. Haven't read the third & final instalment yet, but am looking forward to it.
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on December 23, 2014
I really enjoy Margaret Atwood. She captures your imagination with her novels creating images in your mind of the future and past. Her concepts seem to be ahead of their time.
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on September 29, 2009
Atwood explores further the dystopian future she created in her book Oryx & Crake. It's not really a sequel or a prequel, but more of a companion book. The events in this book happen before, during, and after the events in Oryx & Crake; there are many of the same characters and even a few overlapping scenes, which will be rewarding for those that have read Oryx & Crake, kind of like performing a secret handshake with Atwood. But you don't have to read Oryx & Crake to understand The Year of the Flood, as it works very well as a stand alone novel.

The book is set in the future, where the world has been over run with CorpSeCorps (Corporation Security Corps), genetic mutations, underground drug rings, animal extinctions, and more fun things. The main action in The Year of the Flood takes place surrounding a religious group called God's Gardeners that are basically like new age environmental hippies. The structure of the book is interesting, with lots of flashbacks (nicely dated with the year, thank you Atwood). It is also divided into three rotating sections: that of Adam One (head of the God's Gardeners), Ren, and Toby.

Crystal Clear: The Inspiring True Survival Story of How a Professional, Olympic and World Champion Ice Hockey Player and Extreme Athlete Lost His Legs Due to Frostbite and Crystal Meth Only to Find a Better Life
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on February 3, 2016
Pretty good
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