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and life along the winding road

Friday, February 3, 2017

A Canticle for Leibowitz by Walter M. Miller

A Canticle for Leibowitz was first published in 1959 and has been in print ever since - quite an accomplishment.
The book is set in the post-apocalyptic period of the 26th Century and some have compared the story to Mad Max with desolate areas interrupted by a monastery or two. While recovering from a nuclear war the monks and priests of North America are anxiously trying to recover any memorabilia from the 20th Century - even technical schematics are revered. With foresight, Mr. Miller introduces us to automatically driven cars in the last novella.

Walter Miller enlisted in the army a month after the Pearl Harbor attack and it was after the destruction of the Benedictine abbey at Monte Casino (the oldest monastery in the Western world) that he began A Canticle for Leibowitz. The book is a combination of three novellas with 600 years separating each story. It was nearly forty years later that he neared finishing the sequel, but committed suicide before it was complete.

You can read a summary of the book here

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