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Can anyone help me remember the title of a dystopian book I read in the mid-90s?

(29 Posts)
JulieAnderton Fri 23-Aug-13 15:08:05

I read it in the mid-90's, but could possibly have been written earlier than that.

Set in the near future, there is a been a global heatwave, followed by a global ice-age (or maybe the other way around). A man and his son need to keep travelling to find food and shelter.

I'm sure mechanical/robotic birds that start reproducing on their own also feature, but I might be getting my books mixed up.

macthecatsmum Thu 29-Aug-13 11:29:45

sorry missed the robot birds thing. so not.

macthecatsmum Thu 29-Aug-13 11:28:42

Def the road. usual Cormac McCarthy gigglefest.

AnnaBegins Wed 28-Aug-13 19:53:12

Counting Crows it is smile Hope you like the book - Russian dystopia is a little different from western ones!

AugustMoon Tue 27-Aug-13 08:28:30

AnnaBegins, googling that one now. I like yr name btw - counting crows? (Realise the thread went quiet a few days ago but in case you check in again)

AugustMoon Tue 27-Aug-13 08:25:58

Thanks to this thread I am now reading The Road, which is bleak but i'm enjoying it nonetheless. Will read The Ice People next - thank you mumsnet (again) grin

AnnaBegins Fri 23-Aug-13 19:18:51

Have you read We by Zamyatin? Sounds like you'd like that too!

Franup Fri 23-Aug-13 19:00:50

Thanks CoteDAzur!

JulieAnderton Fri 23-Aug-13 15:37:22

Yes, I think that is probably where I got the bird bit from. Although I suspect I might have taken them as being robotic doves literally when I read the book.

Going back to my parent's house at the weekend, so will have a dig around to see if my copy is still there.

PlotTwist Fri 23-Aug-13 15:30:02 it mentions them here, the robots

monal Fri 23-Aug-13 15:29:29

And they're called "Doves" hence the bird confusion.

JulieAnderton Fri 23-Aug-13 15:29:27

Yes, you are right, PlotTwists. Just found this on amazon:

'Set in the near future, it imagines not a globally warmed world, but an earth slowly returning to aridity and cold. A universal freeze has also descended upon relationships between men and women, who live in morbid segregation, with feathered robots as sexual partners. In a neat reversal of First World-Third World assumptions, Africa's relative warmth offers a last hope to northerly survivors as the novel charts one man's struggle to rescue his alienated son and bring him to where the sun shines' - Rose Tremain.

CoteDAzur Fri 23-Aug-13 15:29:08

Yes, Do Androids Dream... is quite different than Blade Runner. The story is quite different and also Philip K Dick's style is not so dark and action-filled as was the film.

PlotTwist Fri 23-Aug-13 15:27:26

I don't think they are birds, but there is robots in it that reproduce in The Ice People, it's one of the things I definitely remember.

CoteDAzur Fri 23-Aug-13 15:27:13

Franup - I think you would really enjoy Vermillion Sands by J G Ballard. It is a collection of loosely connected short stories, all taking place in the same time & place - slightly in the future and a future that might be called dystopian, and more "speculative fiction" than sci-fi.

JulieAnderton Fri 23-Aug-13 15:25:29

Sorry - lots of x-posts!

Yes - it is The Ice People. Thank you PlotTwists and Monal flowers

It sounds as though my reproducing mechanical birds must be another novel. Any ideas??

JulieAnderton Fri 23-Aug-13 15:22:06

Not The Road, although the man and son travelling is a similar theme.

I went through a long phase of reading dystopian/utopian novels when I was doing my A-levels in the mid-90s. Love Nineteen Eighty-Four, Brave New World (although was rather disappointed with them both when I read them more recently), The Handmaid's Tale.

I really enjoyed Blind Faith. Ben Elton has obviously been very influenced by the aforementioned novels, but I thought it wasn't completely derivative.

Must read Do Androids Dream. It's on my shelf waiting! My husband has read it and says it is very different to Bladerunner?

I remember also reading books by Marge Piercy and Doris Lessing around the time of my mystery dystopian book, but think they went a bit over my head.

Franup Fri 23-Aug-13 15:21:22

That's the one CoteDAzur. Hate sci fci but loved that! More dystopia I suppose

CoteDAzur Fri 23-Aug-13 15:20:09

Drowned World had the heat wave but man & son travelling sounds more like The Road.

CoteDAzur Fri 23-Aug-13 15:19:21

The Drowned World - J G Ballard ?

monal Fri 23-Aug-13 15:19:19

xposts with PlotTwist!

monal Fri 23-Aug-13 15:18:01

I'm thinking of this

Franup Fri 23-Aug-13 15:17:34

Something by J G Ballard as sure I've read it and now trying to recall the book's name!

monal Fri 23-Aug-13 15:16:54

Doves? I can't remember the name of the bloody book either but I've read it too! How helpful.

PlotTwist Fri 23-Aug-13 15:15:33

Is it The Ice People?

CoteDAzur Fri 23-Aug-13 15:15:27

Brave New World is very good, too.

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