Review: Floodland

Floodland by Marcus Sedgwick
Release Date ~ July 1, 2010
Orion Children's Publishing
Review copy recieved from Hachette UK Canada

Goodreads Synopsis:
Global warming has caused the sea to rise until cities are turning into islands and civilization is crumbling. Ten-year-old Zoe discovers a small rowboat and keeps it a secret until she sets out alone on the great sea to find her parents. She lands on tiny Eels Island, where she must survive in a nightmarish world run by wild children, and stand up to its boy-leader, Dooby. Zoe and a boy called Munchkin escape from Eels Island and cross the sea to the mainland, where they find not only Zoe’s parents but a new family and a new world.

Floodland initially gave me the impression of a post-apocolyptic Lord of the Flies style book - a book which greatly impacted me when I read it in highschool and is one that I often consider the implications of and message from to this day.

Even small books can make a big impact, so I was optimistic when I started reading this one. But instead of packing a lot of punch in a small number of pages like I hoped, Floodland read more like a cautionary tale.
  1. A relevant message:
    Marcus Sedgwick clearly delivers a cautionary tale in Floodland, by suggesting the implications of the future of the environment if our actions are not changed; and while those who are familiar with Lord of the Flies will pick up on a similar theme which is implied by Floodland, it is much more than simply a new spin on the same story. But this is an issue that is so current and modern, that many contemporary readers will easily be able to relate to and it raises poignant questions about our society today.
The problem with this though was that it really didn't work in the same way as Lord of the Flies, because it didn't expand enough on this theme and so it lacked the impact. As well, very little background was given and there was next to no room for any development to take place in such a short span of time.
So while I read Floodland expecting a short novel, my thoughts by the end were that it reads more as a fable or short story as opposed to a full length book.
It does end, however, with a hopeful message and I appreciated that from it. I found this to be the most effective part of the book, as it was successfully portrayed in a meaningful and touching ending.

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Christina Kit. said...

I too prefer it when the history of a dystopian society (or in this case environmental destruction) is explained more fully. Not in terms of the science, which we all know, but in terms of how and why the children are there, why it's only children.

It's great that the message is hopeful!

ccfioriole at gmail dot com

franchie15 said...

By reading the blurb, I thought it's gonna be great especially if it made you think of Lord of the Flies! It's a sad thing that it didn't develop well enough. But I think I'l give this a try because I'm curious and the message might have a great impact. Thanks for being honest, Brenna!


Angkarina said...

Meh, I remember seeing a movie (don't remember the name) with a similar story and I didn't really like it. I prefer dystopian novels that take place in a futuristic city.
So I'll guess I'll skip this one.
Thanks for the review!

angkarina_angkasuwan at hotmail dot com

curlypow said...

I'm just glad there is someone else out there that thinks of Lord of the Flies in a positive light. I was beginning to think I was the only one. Have you tried Michael Grant's Gone series yet? It reminds me in principle of LotF.

Oh, I wasn't too thrilled with this one either. His other books have been pretty good.

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