Tag Archive for: The Sixth Extinction

The future that Alderman conjures in her ambitious, exuberant follow-up to The Power is all too close to our own. Unchecked corporate greed dominates the political and cultural landscape; the Sixth Mass Extinction is in full swing; and AI, social media and new gadgets are transforming the way we live, communicate and think.

Against this backdrop, a collection of billionaires, paranoiacs, and idealists including a former cult member and a survivalist influencer co-operate and compete to shape the future of their dreams. With the continuation of much of life on Earth at stake, Alderman’s timely, intelligent thriller is tempered with anthropological, philosophical and religious commentaries which deftly frame the action in the context of entrenched cultural history, the biodiversity crisis, and Deep Time. – Liz Jensen

In her ground-breaking and scientifically rigorous exploration of ecological breakdown, Elizabeth Kolbert reveals how human activity has led to humankind the Earth’s sixth mass extinction event, which is “likely to be more prolonged and severe than the previous five.” Highlighting the loss of charismatic species such as the golden frogs of Panama and the great auks, she emphasises the irreparable loss of biodiversity, the interconnectedness of living systems, and how the disappearance of one species can have cascading effects on the entire web of life. “There is no way to know, and no way to stop, what’s now underway,” she writes. “The only question is whether and how to intervene.”  The book is a poignant but essential read for anyone concerned about the future of the non-human world – and our increasingly precarious existence on Earth.

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