🐞 🐞 🐞 🐞 🐞
August 4, 2020
Humans have officially exterminated almost all of the animals on earth—land, sea, and air. Franny Stone is determined to track what will likely be the last migration of the world’s only remaining flock of Arctic terns. It’s a suicide mission, one that involves sailing to Antarctica through dangerous frozen waters. But Franny has managed to put trackers on three birds, and she’s convinced Captain Ennis Malone and his crew to carry her aboard their ship, with the promise that if they follow the birds, they may finally find fish to catch.
But as the crew makes their way south, they realize Franny is not who she says she is. Plagued by night terrors and a weird obsession with the birds, Franny is clearly troubled—and her story doesn’t quite add up. They don’t know whether to admire her grit and bravery… or fear her secrecy and recklessness. But they’re in too deep now. Franny’s past will reveal itself in time, but the crew needs her, and they must all work together to fight for their future on a decimated Earth.
So I haven’t full on, like, wept over a book in a long time, but I did at the end of Migrations. And it’s not because the book is super sad, although it is sad. It’s because the writing is gorgeous and Franny’s humanity—her loneliness, her heartbreak, her desire to wander coupled with her deep need to be grounded by something—is so perfectly rendered. I understood her. I empathized. I loved her toughness, and I felt her loss. She is a perfectly complex and lovable character.
Also, the story itself is fantastic. Migrations is solidly literary fiction, but there are subtle elements of dystopian fantasy and mystery. It’s the best of both worlds: the slow reveal of Franny’s life made me want to flip pages, but the writing convinced me to do it slowly, to savor and enjoy. I just loved it. Probably one of my favorite books of the year so far.
Thank you to Net Galley and Flatiron for the ARC!