Join us in welcomingBrattleboro's Ralph Meima to our store where he wiill be discussing and signing his Inter Nation series of books. This post-apocalyptic series of novels starts with Fossil Nation and continues with Emergent Disorder.
In Fossil Nation ex-military Mike Kendeil travels to a beach house on North Carolina's dissolving Outer Banks to help his grandmother, Florence Trudeau, rescue heirlooms from the swelling ocean. With a monster hurricane at their back and the contentious 2040 presidential election just a few weeks ahead, the two drive their loaded wagon home on a days-long journey to the Washington, DC suburbs. In 2040, America has one foot back in the nineteenth century and the other in the twenty-first as the costs of fuel and electric vehicles rise beyond the means of most people, forcing them to either walk or use older, simpler modes of travel. High-tech communications-including VNET (the post-Internet virtual reality system)-form the social glue that holds the ragged nation together, also feeding escapism from the difficult conditions of everyday life. Meanwhile, a small number of oligarchs enjoy fabulous wealth, power, and mobility. Fossil Nation is the opening volume in the Inter States trilogy, the story of an extended family spread from Virginia to Vermont living in an America staggering from the effects of energy crises, climate change, geopolitical shifts, and the poverty and political drama that accompany them. As daily life takes its ordinary course, larger changes appear on the horizon.
In Emergent Disorder a historic migration begins, triggered by Hurricane Rhiannon but accelerated by deeper currents. With winter approaching, many hundreds of thousands take to the road in search of safety, potable water, reliable sources of food, and shelter. Their numbers overwhelm infrastructure and governments, roiling politics, and changing the demographic character of regions forever. Carried along in the migration are the Trudeau-Kendeil and Daniels families. They have banded together for a harrowing journey of many days from Washington, D.C. to the homes of charitable relatives in New England, in search of the security a family needs in these lean times. Their route takes them through communities coping in diverse ways with economic hardship, an unstable climate, and the swelling numbers of migrants. With the 2040 election only days away, events whip from one surprise to another. A dispute flares around disaster relief offered by China and the European Union. Supporters and opponents dig in along partisan lines. The President is held in contempt, and arrested by a council of national unity. Despite an initial spirit of cooperation, multiple competing claims to federal executive authority arise, precipitating a constitutional crisis. Oligarchs see threats and opportunities in the emerging disorder, and act to protect their interests. Challenges multiply as the families travel north. Election Day arrives while they are still on the road. Voter turnout is low among populations side-tracked by the storm and migration. Then, tragedy strikes in the families' midst, overwhelming plans and driving home a harsh lesson about options and consequences in a world riven by competing realities and relentless resource scarcity.
Ralph Meima is a consultant, writer, and activist in renewable energy,sustainability, and community resilience. Born in the United States, hehas lived in six countries and intermingled corporate, higher-education, and small business careers. He holds undergraduate degrees in economics and engineering, a master's in international relations and an MBA, and a PhD in management. Ralph Meima lives in Brattleboro, Vermont.