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Landscape with Invisible Hand
by M. T. Anderson


Overview - National Book Award winner M. T. Anderson returns to future Earth in a sharply wrought satire of art and truth in the midst of colonization.

When the vuvv first landed, it came as a surprise to aspiring artist Adam and the rest of planet Earth -- but not necessarily an unwelcome one.  Read more...


 
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More About Landscape with Invisible Hand by M. T. Anderson
 
 
 
Overview
National Book Award winner M. T. Anderson returns to future Earth in a sharply wrought satire of art and truth in the midst of colonization.

When the vuvv first landed, it came as a surprise to aspiring artist Adam and the rest of planet Earth -- but not necessarily an unwelcome one. Can it really be called an invasion when the vuvv generously offered free advanced technology and cures for every illness imaginable? As it turns out, yes. With his parents' jobs replaced by alien tech and no money for food, clean water, or the vuvv's miraculous medicine, Adam and his girlfriend, Chloe, have to get creative to survive. And since the vuvv crave anything they deem "classic" Earth culture (doo-wop music, still-life paintings of fruit, true love), recording 1950s-style dates for the vuvv to watch in a pay-per-minute format seems like a brilliant idea. But it's hard for Adam and Chloe to sell true love when they hate each other more with every passing episode. Soon enough, Adam must decide how far he's willing to go -- and what he's willing to sacrifice -- to give the vuvv what they want.

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9780763687892
  • ISBN-10: 0763687898
  • Publisher: Candlewick Press (MA)
  • Publish Date: September 2017
  • Page Count: 160
  • Reading Level: Ages 14-UP
  • Dimensions: 9.4 x 5.7 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.75 pounds


Related Categories

Books > Young Adult Fiction > Science Fiction - Alien Contact
Books > Young Adult Fiction > Satire
Books > Young Adult Fiction > Dystopian

 
BookPage Reviews

A snapshot of a world irrevocably changed

The eternal beauty of science fiction is this: It takes readers to sometime or someplace else to show them the harsh truths of their own world. In Landscape with Invisible Hand, the vuvv—aliens who’ve come to Earth as benevolent colonizers—make way for humanity to destroy itself by the hand of its own greed.

High school junior Adam Costello enjoys painting landscapes of his deteriorating small town when he’s not on the clock earning his family’s sole income. For cash, he records his saccharine, 1950s-inspired dates with a girlfriend he can barely tolerate just to entertain aliens fascinated with “classic” earth culture. Because the vuvv have descended upon Earth, offering free advanced technology and medicine to the earthlings, the human economy has collapsed as a result. Now the rich hoard wealth behind massive pay walls, leaving regular people to suffer. However, when Adam’s teacher enters his paintings into an intergalactic art competition, he sees a way out. As Adam and his family flounder, he must decide what’s more important: painting pleasantries for profit or making art that captures the truth of humanity’s darkest hour.

In this novella, National Book Award winner M.T. Anderson writes a multilayered and scathing satire of callous economics, wealth disparity and the invisible hand of the market, as well as a metacritical discussion on the worth and value of art. It’s a bleak but necessary lesson in trying to find the beauty in the disastrous, all while learning to recognize when it’s time to dream a new dream.

 

This article was originally published in the September 2017 issue of BookPage. Download the entire issue for the Kindle or Nook.

 
BAM Customer Reviews