The Divide

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The Divide

Last Free Dates: 24th Jun 16 to 27th Jun 16
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...I came looking for a story, I left wanting a large double cheeseburger. ...

Set in the not too far future, Britain has been split into two after ecological disasters started to ravage the country and the island has been cut off from the rest of the world. Several years later, the President of the United States has been invited to see what has happened to the country and how one small part has turned into what is known as the Promised Land, while the rest of the country has suffered and is now known as Helland.

While on his visit, the President and his security details are guided by a succession of British army officers and shown a variety of wonders in the Promised Land. From the giant self-sustaining floating platforms, containing a vibrant and thriving population, all happily powered by natural means, contrasted with the flying tour of Helland as the President is shown the opposite side of the country. Here the people are called Trogalites, surviving off fast food, are overweight and have short life expectancies. The tour covers different areas of England highlights the squalor in which they live and how society has broken down in some places heading back to medieval times. Finally, the President is shown the titular Divide, a giant channel carved from the Bristol Channel to the South Coast cutting off the South West of the country from the rest of Helland. Within that area, it is a green and pleasant land, a veritable Avalon protected by the Divide from the self-destructive nature of the Trogalites.

The story is simply that, a message thinly veiled of how an organic and natural lifestyle is the way forward and that the current excesses of modern living will cause catastrophe in the future. Several of the points raised are quite valid about how we live. But the heavy-handed nature with which these points are raised will make most people cringe.

The story such as it is, is threadbare, with stereotypes abound. It seems strange that the President spends almost the entire journey being totally surprised and gobsmacked by everything he is shown. The army officers all tended to blend into each other and the natives were all almost perfect to a fault, because of the organic and wholesome nature of they way they live. The Trogalites are never met, just shown in the distance, but you can understand what they represent from the descriptions.

This book will probably appeal to anyone who thinks in the same way as the author and to a point, I can understand the point of view. Some things should be changed; better education for people about how they live would be good. But this book does not appear to try and educate readers, more it is a sermon that we are supposed to hear and obey without question.

I came looking for a story, I left wanting a large double cheeseburger.

Rating: 1
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Tregaron (6 March 2017)
This seems rather like a British version of "The Collapse". There is something about political polemics as fiction which just puts me off, and this one was no exception.

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