8 Aug 2021

New Cli-Fi novel imagines a world on fire

From Standing Room Only, 2:36 pm on 8 August 2021

Novelist and non fiction writer Jillian Webster didn't mean to start writing climate fiction, bit it arrived in her life at pace. She's just published her second climate fiction novel The Burn of a Thousand Suns and is returning to her protagonist Maia. Maia begins the series in Aotearoa but is trying to make her way to the other end of the world, to a city in what used to be the arctic circle where life is still possible. 

She's navigating a world ravaged by climate change, creating horrifying worlds to pass through, ghosts of places we would recognise now. Cli-Fi is becoming more and more common for writers exploring the limits of human endurance and cruelty, and Jillian's story is no exception. Rob Kelly sat down with Jillian and asked her why this world had sprung into her mind. 

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Photo: Jillian Webster

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