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13 April 2008 @ 09:00 am
Woman on the Edge of Time, Marge Piercy, 1976  
Woman on the Edge of Time, Marge Piercy, 1976

Excerpt from the back cover: Woman on the Edge of Time is the fascinating story of Connie Ramos, a Chicana woman in her mid-thirties, living in New York and labeled insane, committed to a mental institution. But the truth is that Connie is overwhelmingly sane, heroically sane, and tuned in to the future.

Connie is able to communicate with the year 2137. Two totally different ways of life are competing. One is beautiful--communal, nonsexist, environmentally pure, open to ritual and magic. The other is a horror--totalitarian, exploitive, rigidly technological.

In Connie's struggle to keep the doctors from forcing her into a brain control operation, we find the timeless struggle between beauty and terror, between good and evil... with an astonishing outcome.

My review:
This is a beautiful book. It deals with both utopian and dystopian societies through the lens of the most unlikely narrator--a Chicana woman committed to a mental institution. You can never quite be sure whether or not she's hallucinating everything, or if she really is heroically sane. The future she describes makes you think, makes you hope, makes you wonder. It's a book worth reading over and over again, amazing in so many ways.