On the Horizon – afterland (Lauren Beukes)

Ahoy there me mateys!  I received this dystopian thriller eARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  So here be me honest musings . . .

afterland (Lauren Beukes)

Title: afterland

Author: Lauren Beukes

Publisher: Mulholland Books

Publication Date: TODAY!!! (hardcover/e-book)

ISBN: 978-0316267830

Source:  NetGalley


This be me fourth book by the author.  I adored her shining girls and thought it was one of the best time travel books I have read.  I also very much enjoyed zoo city cause who doesn’t want a giant sloth?

This is a dystopian thriller where a plague has wiped out most of the men.  The remaining men are locked up for their own protection.  A mom, Cole, and her teenage son, Miles, have escaped and are on the run.  They make their way across the US with Miles dressed as a girl.  I should have loved this one but I wasn’t thrilled by it at all.

While I liked the concepts, everything was dealt with on a surface level. Instead of getting the interesting point of view of Miles as one of the last men on earth, ye primarily get an anxious mom’s looping thoughts.  The government chasing the fugitives doesn’t come into play.  The bad guy is a relative who only is able to track the duo because a) the son’s bad use of social media or b) because mom actually gives directions!  The pandemic could have been removed and replaced with any other big issue and not much would have changed in the story.  Also minor points that are personal dislikes include the use of the religious cult and mention of current politics and people.

I was expected a fast-paced action thriller that delves into the social structure of a post-apocalyptic world run by women.  Instead it is an uninteresting take on family dynamics where not much really happens.  A miss for me but I will still be reading future work by the author.

So lastly . . .

Thank ye Mulholland Books!

Goodreads has this to say about the novel:

Most of the men are dead. Three years after the pandemic known as The Manfall, governments still hold and life continues — but a world run by women isn’t always a better place.

Twelve-year-old Miles is one of the last boys alive, and his mother, Cole, will protect him at all costs. On the run after a horrific act of violence-and pursued by Cole’s own ruthless sister, Billie — all Cole wants is to raise her kid somewhere he won’t be preyed on as a reproductive resource or a sex object or a stand-in son. Someplace like home.

To get there, Cole and Miles must journey across a changed America in disguise as mother and daughter. From a military base in Seattle to a luxury bunker, from an anarchist commune in Salt Lake City to a roaming cult that’s all too ready to see Miles as the answer to their prayers, the two race to stay ahead at every step . . . even as Billie and her sinister crew draw closer.

A sharply feminist, high-stakes thriller from award-winning author Lauren Beukes, Afterland brilliantly blends psychological suspense, American noir, and science fiction into an adventure all its own — and perfect for our times.

To visit the author’s website go to:

Lauren Beukes – Author

To buy the novel please visit:

afterland – Book

To add to Goodreads go to:

Yer Ports for Plunder List

Previous Log Entries for this Author

zoo city (Captain’s Log – Fantasy)

broken monsters (Captain’s Log – Fantasy)

the shining girls (Captain’s Log – Fantasy)

10 thoughts on “On the Horizon – afterland (Lauren Beukes)

  1. Sorry this one was a miss. It sounds like a bit of a slice of life dystopian though and I think this might be for me. I still have to read Zoo City though, which I have sitting in my TBR pile from a while ago… Thanks for your thoughts!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I was just talking with someone on another blog about how dystopians are such hit-or-miss settings for me. It sounds like this one doesn’t ever get “bad enough” for me to believe it as a dystopian, so it would probably be a miss. I never would have expected it, but I’m beginning to think that dystopians are one of the hardest genres to write.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It also doesn’t help that I now kinda feel like we are headed towards a dystopian (well on me super negative days) which weirdly makes me more judgmental of them. I do think they are super hard to write. I don’t get tired of reading them even though they do tend to be hit or miss. The good ones are just soooo good. Station eleven and bannerless being two favorites off the top of me noggin.
      x The Captain


      1. Agreed, the good dystopians are sooooo good. It can be hard to find them, but it’s worth it when we do!

        I hope we’re not headed into an actual dystopia, but… I mean… It’s hard to read the news and not come to that conclusion.

        Liked by 1 person

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