THE MIGRATION, by Helen Marshall, Random House Canada


Creepy and atmospheric, evocative of Stephen King’s classic Pet Sematary , The Migration is a story of sisterhood, transformation, and the limitations of love, from a thrilling new voice in Canadian fiction.

When I was younger I didn’t know a thing about death. I thought it meant stillness, a body gone limp. A marionette with its strings cut. Death was like a long vacation–a going away.

Storms and flooding are worsening around the world, and a mysterious immune disorder has begun to afflict the young. Sophie Perella is about to begin her senior year of high school in Toronto when her little sister, Kira, is diagnosed. Their parents’ marriage falters under the strain, and Sophie’s mother takes the girls to Oxford, England, to live with their Aunt Irene. An Oxford University professor and historical epidemiologist obsessed with relics of the Black Death, Irene works with a centre that specializes in treating people with the illness. She is a friend to Sophie, and offers a window into a strange and ancient history of human plague and recovery. Sophie just wants to understand what’s happening now; but as mortality rates climb, and reports emerge of bodily tremors in the deceased, it becomes clear there is nothing normal about this condition–and that the dead aren’t staying dead. When Kira succumbs, Sophie faces an unimaginable choice: let go of the sister she knows, or take action to embrace something terrifying and new.
Tender and chilling, unsettling and hopeful, The Migration is a story of a young woman’s dawning awareness of mortality and the power of the human heart to thrive in cataclysmic circumstances.

Out March 5, 2019

289 Pages


I received this book in exchange for my honest review.

What I expected: Zombie epidemic

What I got:

Fast-paced, well-thought out premise, excellent concept that showed a bit of a genre-crossover (a bit), and really good dialogue to push the story forward.  Characters were interesting, young and fleshed-out.

There’s a dark atmosphere to the story, references to climate change and a breakdown of immunity due to plague suggestions brought on by disaster, in this case climate change.

As a science fiction buff, I have to see a strongly plotted story that uses many aspects to keep the story happening such as cause and effect, unexpected twists, incredible dialogue, provocative back story, clever settings, historical references, realistic expectations and outcomes and especially amazing  driven characters.

With Helen Marshall’s book, you get all this. I read this book in one sitting.

Well done!

I gave it:




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