American War ~ by Omar El Akkad

The year is 2075 and the place is St. James Louisiana where the family of  Benjamin Chestnut,  including Sarat age 10,  is living  in the times of  the American War –  Civil War II.   It’s Georgia, Alabama,  Mississippi, Louisiana,  and Texas – the Reds –  vs the rest of the country – the Blues.    Her father, Benjamin,  and brother Simon,  are heading north looking for work.   That’s a very dangerous thing to do.

Then comes a little “history lesson”  from the US Federal Government Archives.  This particular war started in 2074 and ended  in 2095,  precipitated by a train wreck.  The reasons were the new law against the use of fossil fuels which the gulf countries did not want implemented..   The War finally “ended”  by a Reunification Day Ceremony at which a secessionist terrorist crossed the border into the North and set off a biological agent which started an epidemic costing 110,million lives.   It was felt throughout whole country for another 10 years.  –  end of history lesson.



American War
by Omar El Akkad
2017/ 352 pages
read by Dion Graham  – 12h 12m 
rating:    7/B+  literary-dystopian sci-fi  

The main character here for the story within the war is a girl named Sarat who is 6 years old at the opening.  Also in her family are the parents,  Sarat’s twin,  Denna.  and a somewhat older boy named Simon,  about age 9.

Louisiana’s environment is a mess in 2075 what with global warming and industrial pollution.  That’s too bad – they won’t change –  they want the jobs.

Dad dies on that trip and the family is told.  Martina,  the mother,  decides to find out where dad is buried and they head east passing as refugees from South Carolina.  They end up in a prisoner camp in Mississippi.  That’s where the action kind of starts –

Most of the book is just a lot of war in which a girl is fighting, being betrayed,  being tortured,  and losing loved ones.  It’s really not particularly memorable.  But the last Part –  maybe the last 20% –  has to do with after the war ends and  this part is riveting as well as satisfying.  The rating goes from a C to a B+.

Dion Graham does an admirable job.

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