"It was the system. We can't change it."

From the final novella of David Mitchell’s The Bone Clocks, set in Ireland in 2043:

‘Number one is to survive’, answers Hood, watching the men on the roof. ‘They’re all dead, like my parents. They had a better life than I did, mind. So did you. Your power stations, your cars, your creature comforts. Well, you lived too long. The bill’s due. Today,’ up on the roof the bold is cut on the first panel, ‘you start to pay. Think of us as the bailiffs.’

‘But it wasn’t us, personally, who trashed the world,’ says Mo. ‘It was the system. We can’t change it.’

‘Then it’s not us, personally, taking your panels,’ says Hood. ‘It’s the system. We can’t change it.’

This part of the book is a dark but plausible imagining of what life might be like if we fail to halt climate change. The modern world has collapsed into violence following a huge depletion of resources, and many people are forced to live off the land again.

It feels like a description of how we end up in the world of Cormac McCarthy’s The Road.


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Tagged with: Climate change, Post-apocalypse
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