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The End We Start from

by Megan Hunter

Hardcover, 160 pages, Grove Press, List Price: $22 |


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Book Summary

In an alternate-world modern London submerged below flood waters, a woman who has just given birth to her first child is forced to flee her home with her baby to seek refuge in a variety of locations while the baby thrives against all odds.

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NPR stories about The End We Start from

'The End We Start From' Chronicles Motherhood In The Midst Of Crisis

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Note: Book excerpts are provided by the publisher and may contain language some find offensive.

Excerpt: The End We Start From

* * *

I am thirty-two weeks pregnant when they announce it: the water is rising faster than they thought. It is creeping faster. A calculation error. A badly plotted movie, sensors out at sea.

We hide under the duvet with a torch like children. I ask R if he still would have done it. If he had known. He doesn't answer.

He shines the torch up into the duvet and makes his fingers into ducks. I decide to take that as a yes.* * *

I am a geriatric primigravida, but I don't look it.

We have leather sofas. R spills takeaway on them and grins: wipe clean.

I am thirty-eight weeks when they tell us we will have to move. That we are within the Gulp Zone.

I say whoever thought of that name should be boiled in noodles. R spends all night on the same property website. It is loading very slowly.* * *

Man came from a germ. From this germ we fashioned him, from clot to bones to thick flesh. We stood him up on one end, a new creation.* * *

J phones an ambulance and S looks out of the window palely.

I gaze at the wooden floor. I have never noticed how beautiful it is before.

It is perfectly dusk-coloured, and the whorls are rising like dark little planets through its glow.

Between the waves of disembowelling wrench the world is shining. I feel like Aldous Huxley on mescaline. I am drenched in is-ness.