The former story line, starting a few years earlier in the prequel, focuses on two main characters. It is late in the 2040s, and Lizzie and Donnie are two of only six people left alive in a residential complex that had been built into the side of Newfoundland’s Gros Morne mountain in the 2030s, now the only piece of habitable land left above water in all of what was once eastern Canada. In the second story line we follow a group of humanity’s richest and most powerful, the super-elite, as they try to establish an off-Earth colony for themselves.
“The Dying Party” explores in fascinating detail the complex brutality of what having to accept such a fate would mean for human civilization; what it would look like on a global scale, a local context, and from a variety of personal perspectives. The author’s extensive research shows that if we stay on our present course of inaction, confusion, and complacency, such a declaration will come sooner than we think. The thrust of the novel, however, is to illustrate the under-appreciated impact that passing the climate change tipping point will have on the human psyche; an impact that will further complicate and accelerate what is happening on a number of levels.
This is not fanciful speculation about the near and distant future, but rather the logical extension of the current course of humanity if we fail to up our game. The novel is a courageous, unflinchingly depiction of the worst-case scenario, with a measure of redemption, and is therefore a cautionary tale to end all cautionary tales.