The Glad Shout by Alice Robinson

There has been a increase in so called Climate Change Fiction or "Cli-Fi" in recent times - authors are responding to the concerns about our planet and envisaging what might happen. In The Glad Shout we follow Isobel, her husband and 3 year old daughter as they struggle with life after a huge storm wreaks havoc in Melbourne, destroying homes and forcing people to flee to a stadium on higher ground. People are desperate, food and water are in short supply and no one knows what's going to happen next. When Isobel's husband goes on a mission to help outside the grounds and doesn't return, she is forced to take a huge risk to try and get to family in Tasmania, and save herself and her daughter.

Alternating chapters follow Isobel's life as she grows up with her family, particularly her relationship with her mother and grandmother, and her struggle in the present day after the catastrpohic weather event. We see some of the lead up to this storm during Isobel's childhood and adolescence; intermittent power and water supplies, rationing of food and petrol. In many ways Isobel is a normal girl growing up with her older brother and visiting her Nonno in the country. Until everything changes.

The Glad Shout is an interesting and poignantly written story of how people react when driven to the limit, and the strong, if sometimes turbulent and difficult relationships we have with our families. Most of all it is a meditation on the challenges and struggles of motherhood, and how our view of our own mother changes if we become mothers ourselves. The story is dramatic, and sometimes paints a grim picture of a possible future, but I found it quite moving and ultimately hopeful.

It's available at the Library and to download as an eBook from BorrowBox.


The Glad Shout by Alice Robinson
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