Old Green World
Author: Walter Basho
Publisher: Craft Fiction
Genre: Science Fiction, LGBTQ+
Release Date: May 19th 2015
Page Count: 224
Format: ARC provided by NetGalley
* This ARC was provided by NetGalley *
Old Green World has a very interesting premise. It definitely grabbed my attention when I read the synopsis while browsing through NetGalley. It sounded like something unlike anything I had ever read before, especially within the LGBTQ+ genre. As intriguing as it sounded and as much as I really wanted to enjoy this book, that just simply was not the case.
Goodreads synopsis: The apocalypse happened 4000 years ago; now, a wild forest covers the world. Albert Todorov, an immigrant military prodigy, lives on an island, in the shadow of the forest. He loves Thomas Newton, a boy he can never marry. A new island civilization is blossoming, led by strange monks called the Adepts–who have power over matter and the mind–and their holy figures, the mysterious Old People. They plan to storm the forest, to tame it for civilization. The forest doesn’t care. It is patient and vast. This is what happens. Walter Basho’s first novel extends the patterns and practices of genre fiction to explore perception, identity, and culture. It is a science fantasy adventure, a coming-of-age story, a romance, and a meditation on what it means for the world to end.
This story opens with two boys named Albert and Thomas, 4000 years from now, who are both preparing for what seems to be an impending war. Both boys are from two different social classes which has them both preparing in different ways. Albert is more “street smart” and is being trained as a kind of soldier while Thomas is “book smart” and is learning to someday lead and rule a community.
Initially, I was really enjoying the storyline, but then things got weird. I found the writing style really hard to follow and confusing. What started out as a simple and straightforward story about love and war, turned into something a little too complicated and obscure. There were also too many characters and too many points of view. I just had a really hard time following what was going on. This story is definitely meant to have a deeper meaning and that definitely is apparent, I just wish it were easier to see and understand.
Overall, I think this had the potential to be something beautiful and smart, but unfortunately I got lost in the complexity of it all.