Love in the Time of Global Warming

Love in the Time of Global WarmingBy Francesca Lia Block

Penelope Overland’s life has been completely destroyed by the Earth Shaker, the global earthquake-turned-tsunami that has left the world in ruins.  Pen is one of the few survivors, although her parents, best friends and little brother have disappeared. 

Seemingly trapped in her Los Angeles home, which is now beachfront property, Pen subsists on the canned goods in her basement and tries to hide from the frightening world.  One day, she is visited by looters who have some very sinister plans in mind for anyone they find, especially girls and women.

Pen is forced to leave her home and is propelled into the world in a workman’s van.  Her journey is modelled on Homer’s The Odyssey and as she travels, she must contend with a modern-day Medusa, the Cyclops, Giants, and the Sirens.

Her sadness is palpable, but is reduced somewhat when she meets the androgynous Hex.  Pen has always been secretly attracted to girls (including Moira, one of her best friends), but for some reason, her feelings for this new boy in her life are overwhelming.

As Pen and Hex fall in love, they navigate their post-apocalyptic home searching for lost family and friends.  Rumour has is that Pen’s family is in Las Vegas.  As Pen and Hex set out across the desert, they encounter two more lost souls: Ash and Ez.  All four teens have lost everything but find a new kind of family in each other.

Love in the Time of Global Warming is a magical book that leaves you feeling as though the mythological creatures of the new world are real.  But despite that element of fantasy, the book has a serious side.  Climate change is a legitimate threat and could lead to a worldwide catastrophe.

And aside from all the politics, magic and myth, Love in the Time of Global warming is about falling in love and the deep bond we feel for our closest friends and family.