The Burning River

By Lawrence Patchett,

Book cover of The Burning River

Book description

In a radically changed Aotearoa New Zealand, Van's life in the swamp is hazardous. Sheltered by Rau and Matewai, he mines plastic and trades to survive. When a young visitor summons him to the fenced settlement on the hill, he is offered a new and frightening responsibility-a perilous inland journey…

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Why read it?

1 author picked The Burning River as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

Though not packaged as YA, I think it sits well here. It’s speculative cli-fi, imagining an Aotearoa New Zealand ravaged by climate change. Steeped with Māori references, it’s a rollicking good yarn with a serious undertow and questions about how we care (and don’t care) for our environment, and the things that join and divide us.

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