Briefly Very Beautiful

Roz Dineen

Briefly Very Beautiful
Format
Paperback
Publisher
Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Country
United Kingdom
Published
4 June 2024
Pages
336
ISBN
9781526659187

Briefly Very Beautiful

Roz Dineen

The world is on fire. And what will you do?

In a city rocked by global catastrophe, home-grown terrorism, shortages and wildfires, Cass is quietly raising three small children by herself. Her husband, Nathaniel, has left to serve as a medic in a war overseas.

As life in the city becomes increasingly impossible, Cass knows she can no longer wait for Nathaniel's return. Packing up their lives, she and the children set off in search of a place of greater safety.

But Cass will learn that not all promises and not all sanctuaries are what they seem and as the fires around them begin to close in, she'll discover just how far she'll go for her children in a world teetering on apocalypse.

Sensual, claustrophobic and vivid, Briefly Very Beautiful announces the arrival of a major new talent, painting an unforgettable portrait of a mother trying to hold her family together.

Review

In a world past the brink of apocalypse, Cass is raising her three children in The City on her own. Her husband Nathaniel is a medic in a war in a foreign land, leaving her alone in a world where the air her children are breathing keeps getting heavier with pollution every day. Searching for refuge, Cass decides to start the journey north, hoping to find a new home with her husband’s family in which her children can know safety.

Roz Dineen not only gives us a powerful story of a mother’s love and bravery in pursuit of a better home for her three children, but also captures the deeply unsettling reality of living in a world broken by the climate crisis.

Serving as an allegory for Mother Earth herself, we witness with startling clarity Cass’s unravelling relationships as she struggles against forces that seek to position and use her in ways that suit their own desires. Through the narrative of this novel, Dineen is illuminating how (the collective) man’s quest for himself comes at the cost of the very ecosystem that keeps him alive; a theme that is explored through how women, and our earth, create, do and serve – yet man (yet humanity) takes, manipulates and does not serve anyone but himself, until the very last minute when he does not have another choice.

Roz Dineen is doing more than writing a book. She is holding up a mirror – and we all must ask ourselves if we are willing to see the stark reality glaring loudly back at us.

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