Cli-fi transcendent. An exquisite human story set on an undiscovered continent of our near future. Austral may be McAuley's best yet. And the best near-future novel yet written. Paul McAuley has quickened science fiction. The future has changed.
The excitement of a new country appearing right here on Earth, a real possibility that is quite fascinating in itself, is doubled down here by way of a thrilling kidnap-and-rescue plot that ranges across this beautiful new landscape, showing how we will soon be not only terraforming Earth, but finding new ways to take care of each other. It's a vivid example of science fiction at its best.
Austral combines a solid science scenario with a taught thriller in an all too plausible future. For an SF reader, or indeed any reader that considers matters beyond the day after tomorrow, what is there not to like?
It is one of the best post-climate change novels yet written - and one of McAuley's best books.
Austral is a beautifully written novel, which portrays in stark and stunning terms the new frontier of Antarctica.
A haunting and engaging piece of science fiction that is every bit as good a piece of writing as the best literary fiction.
A chase thriller set in late 21st-century Antarctica that combines elements of Jack London,J.G. Ballard and William Gibson. A significant contribution to writing about the anthropocene.
Deeply sad and tender.
A thrilling chase-cum-travelogue through a beautifully depicted Antarctic wonderland... an impressively vast story in a short punchy novel.
McAuley is a nature poet of imaginary lands .