Thursday, August 25, 2011

The Children of Men by P.D. James

The Children of Men by P. D. James was a wonderful book. After reading the first page I was already drawn to the setting— a world with no fertile man, and therefore no children as well.

Because of this lack of posterity, the world was much different. People no longer cared for technological innovations— except for technologies that will bring pleasures or extend people's lives; most students ended their educational career at the undergraduate level; a form of public suicide called the Quietus emerged; and many people began to have dolls and/or cats as substitutes for children. Also, people no longer cared about political reform—the world was going to end soon anyway— and as a result Britain was ruled by a dictator.

Anyway, the main character, Theodore Faron, by chance got involved with a small rebellion group, and later found out that one of the members of the group was pregnant. He then went on a mission to try to protect this woman so that the baby could be delivered before the woman fell into the hands of the dictator.

(The rest of this post contains spoiler and requires some prior-knowledge to the novel)

This novel was divided into two books: the first book described the society and Theo's encounter with the rebellion group, and the second book described Theo's mission of protecting the pregnant woman.

I wasn't sure which book I liked better—the first book was more thought-provocative but more boring (by the end), and the second book was more thrilling but in a way not fully logical.  For example, why did Julian even have to run away? Yes I know that she thought that the dictator was evil, but I don't think this would be a good-enough reason for her to risk her baby's life! Also, why did Xan had to kill all the other people who knew about the baby? I simply couldn't understand.

Still, as I have mentioned earlier, I liked this book very much. It was simply fascinating. I really liked its setting, and this alone could have made me like entire the novel.

Oh, and I must mention how much I liked the ending. After Theo killed Xan, there was the possibility that he would be corrupted by his sudden gain of power! To me, this was an incredibly smart planning of the author, for this would allow readers to actually think about the character and what he was really like.
I think I will end this post here. (Sorry for the messy writing...)