We Speak Through the Mountain

ECW. Jun. 2024. 150p. ISBN 9781770417335. pap. $15.95. SF
Reid Graham has “won” a coveted place at Howse University, one of the few surviving enclaves of pre-collapse technology and society in this post-climate-apocalypse world. Howse is supposed to serve as a beacon and a haven, but as Reid tries to reconcile her new life of ease, plenty, and knowledge-seeking with the “real” world she grew up in—the world of danger and illness and hardship and community—she begins to realize that Howse isn’t so much a paradise as it is a trap that no one should ever want to leave. Then Reid’s community calls her home, and she goes, unable to forsake the people she left behind, no matter the price or the punishment. Howse’s world of elite and elitist academia will remind readers of The Practice, the Horizon, and the Chain by Sofia Samatar, but at its heart, this is a story about eating from the Tree of Knowledge and being thrown out of paradise as a result.
VERDICT Readers of hopepunk that asks difficult questions will find plenty to think about in Mohamed’s follow-up to The Annual Migration of Clouds.
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