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Staff Pick
The Animals in That Country: Winner of the Arthur C. Clarke Award

The Animals in That Country: Winner of the Arthur C. Clarke Award

Current price: $16.00
Publication Date: September 13th, 2022
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Staff Reviews

The Animals in That Country is the definition of a page-turner you’ll want to savor every moment of. As gruesome as it is heartfelt, McKay is a master of building palpable tension through brilliant language. I never thought a favorite literary friendship would be a grandma and a dingo til now.

— Alex


Out on the road, no one speaks, everything talks.

Hard-drinking, foul-mouthed, and allergic to bullshit, Jean is not your usual grandma. She's never been good at getting on with other humans, apart from her beloved granddaughter, Kimberly. Instead, she surrounds herself with animals, working as a guide in an outback wildlife park. And although Jean talks to all her charges, she has a particular soft spot for a young dingo called Sue.

As disturbing news arrives of a pandemic sweeping the country, Jean realizes this is no ordinary flu: its chief symptom is that its victims begin to understand the language of animals--first mammals, then birds and insects, too. As the flu progresses, the unstoppable voices become overwhelming, and many people begin to lose their minds, including Jean's infected son, Lee. When he takes off with Kimberly, heading south, Jean feels the pull to follow her kin.

Setting off on their trail, with Sue the dingo riding shotgun, they find themselves in a stark, strange world in which the animal apocalypse has only further isolated people from other species. Bold, exhilarating, and wholly original, The Animals in That Country asks what would happen, for better or worse, if we finally understood what animals were saying.