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Thursday, April 30, 2020

THE MARROW THIEVES (audiobook) by Cherie Dimaline

Published by Kobo Originals in 2018.
Read by Meegwun Fairweather.
Duration: 7 hours, 11 minutes.

It is the latter half of the 21st century and the world has had a series of literal upheavals. Earthquakes sheared off California, global warming has changed the weather. Droughts occur in former wet spaces and dry places have become swamps. Sea levels have risen and drowned out many cities. Many animal species have died off and others are in severe decline. On top of that, the nations of the world have gone to war and most cities were destroyed, people have fled to the remaining cities. The entire world map has been re-drawn.

In the future there is also another problem. Almost everyone in the world has
The author, Cherie Dimaline.
lost the ability to dream. Everybody except the indigenous population of the Americas - Native Americans. However, their bone marrow can be harvested for a substance that lets other people dream. The government and the Catholic Church have joined together to "recruit" people for this project. That sounds harmless enough in theory, but in practice it means hunting them down, capturing them and taking them off to concentration camps.

Frenchie is a teenager. He and his family fled the city to go north to their people's original homelands. On the way, Frenchie lost everyone in one way or another. Alone, he stumbled into the camp of survivors who were also pushing north. An old woman, a middle-aged man, a smattering of young men and women and a little girl. This is their story.

I liked this book quite a bit. The characters were great and the ups and downs are truly roller coasters for the listener. Meegwun Fairweather did a great job with the reading.

The only problem I had with the book was the reason why the Native American populations were being hunted in the first place. There is no reason giving for almost everyone losing the ability to dream and no explanation for how the government is able to distill a substance from Native Americans, but somehow not able to chemically replicate this substance. This could have been a fatal flaw, but the strength of the characters carried it past this problem.

I rate this audiobook 4 stars out of 5. It can be found on Amazon.com here: THE MARROW THIEVES (audiobook) by Cherie Dimaline.

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