I always enjoy an interesting work of speculative fiction. This one did not disappoint. It is set at an indeterminate time in the future, in the United States. Environmental changes have made water a scarce and costly resource which must be produced in a distant location and transported through disputed territory. This has led to long term warfare that is destroying a generation of young men. We have following the personal struggles of one of them. But the main concern of the book is for the work and mission of “completionists”, nurses who accompany women undergoing artificial insemination, or who miraculously get pregnant naturally. The birth rate has plummeted and children have become so precious that strict protocols must be followed by women to care for themselves and their offspring under threat of large fines. The sister of the young man I referred to before is such a nurse and another sister gets pregnant. This is the perfect pretext to explore all the issues of the ethics of completion work, the constraints on pregnant women and mothers, and of the personal consequences of war such as PTSD and contamination by chemical warfare agents. This novel is loaded with issues, and its a good story.
Thanks to the publisher for making this novel available through Net Galley. It became available on June 19, 2018.
Adcock, Siobhan. The Completionist. Simon & Shuster, 2018.