Harvey Molloy reviews “Where We Land” for New Zealand Review of Books Pukapuka Aotearoa
Harvey Molloy writes:
What makes the novella such a compelling read is the fast-paced narration, coupled with descriptions that world-build a future Auckland in bold strokes: “In those years of the relentlessly rising sea, wealth brought elevation: the only people who lived close to the ever-advancing shoreline were those who could not afford to live further away.”
Climate fiction (cli-fi) can sometimes be a dry, ponderous genre…. Not so with Jones, whose sense of mischief is at times reminiscent of Margaret Atwood. There’s … a wry, often dark sense of humour at work.
Thanks, Harvey! For the full review, see New Zealand Review of Books Pukapuka Aotearoa 29(4) Summer 2019, p 35.
Rushi Vyas reviews “Where We Land” for Landfall Review Online
Rushi Vyas writes:
Jones deftly world builds through dialogue and details that underscore language’s impact on how we relate to one another…. This dialogue enables Jones to paint, without exposition, his new New Zealand as a land ruled by xenophobia, sexism, a feared Navy and nationalism.
He wants readers to grapple with difficult questions. What happens when global warming meets nationalism and scarcity of resources? How does language condition our responses to human suffering? Donna’s relatable, easy foul mouth and difficult situation ensures that readers cannot simply assume, ‘yes, I would help the refugee’.
Jones makes us embody the situation, where it seems that struggling to get by competes against helping those on the brink of death. While Jones, a climate activist himself, wished action would have been taken before it made sense to republish this book, Where We Land is still a timely and gripping novella, one that does the stunning work that fiction can do – suspend our disbelief enough to help us rehearse our response to future tragedy.
Check out the full review, in which Rushi Vyas has good things to say about three books: Where We Land, The Everrumble by Michelle Elvy, and Soul Etchings by Sandra Arnold.