Don’t be fooled by the floating cities and brain implants, this mysterious polar camp riven by inequality is no utopia.
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BOTM Editorial Team
Picture this: a near-future Earth ravaged by the climate crisis. Technological marvels abound, with “floating cities” that are protected from the worst of the environment and the “Flick”: a new technology that is implanted at birth, providing the population with virtual reality and internet access at every waking moment. It’s a setting that feels both revolutionary and disturbing, but eerily possible.
Removed from all this chaos is Camp Zero, a building project led by a peculiar architect in Canada’s far north. We experience life at Camp Zero through three expertly-crafted points of view. First is Rose, an escort who flees the safety of her city for the Canadian settlement after striking a deal to spy on the architect. Soon after arrives Grant, a college professor desperately trying to escape his past and the grip of his wealthy father. Our final perspective is that of White Alice, a mysterious group of female soldiers training nearby. As life in Camp Zero unfolds, we learn that the secrets and entanglements of the camp run deeper than could ever be imagined.
At its core, Camp Zero is about the importance of both solidarity and communal support in times of societal collapse. With flowing prose and a chillingly evocative atmosphere, Michelle Min Sterling creates the perfect blend of dystopia and mystery that will keep you reading late into the night.
In the far north of Canada sits Camp Zero, an American building project hiding many secrets.
Desperate to help her climate-displaced Korean immigrant mother, Rose agrees to travel to Camp Zero and spy on its architect in exchange for housing. She arrives at the same time as another newcomer, a college professor named Grant who is determined to flee his wealthy family’s dark legacy. Gradually, they realize that there is more to the architect than previously thought, and a disturbing mystery lurks beneath the surface of the camp. At the same time, rumors abound of an elite group of women soldiers living and working at a nearby Cold War-era climate research station. What are they doing there? And who is leading them?
An electrifying page-turner where nothing is as it seems, Camp Zero cleverly explores how the intersection of gender, class, and migration will impact who and what will survive in a warming world.