“A stunning novel of one woman’s attempt to outrun her destiny that is predicted for her, a destiny that pursues her as she moves from a remote New Zealand commune in the waning days of 1970’s free-love experimentation to the heady music scene of 1980s London” (quote from the back of the book). Find out what I thought of this book by Bianca Zander.
Title: The Predictions
Author: Bianca Zander
Publisher: William Morrow
Format: Paperback, 365 pages
Source: Received from TLC Book Tours in exchange for an honest review
From the author of the acclaimed The Girl Below comes a stunning novel of one woman’s attempt to outrun the destiny that is predicted for her, moving from a remote New Zealand commune in the waning days of 1970s free-love experimentation to the heady music scene of 1980s London.
Gaialands, a bucolic vegan commune in the New Zealand wilderness, is the only home fifteen-year-old Poppy has ever known. It’s the epitome of 1970s counterculture–a place of free love, hard work, and high ideals…at least in theory. The reality is complicated and sometimes fraught, especially as its children reach adolescence. Poppy is drawn to handsome sixteen-year-old Lukas, who’s increasingly skeptical of Gaialands and the adults who shape its rules.
To help ‘heal’ the commune’s energy, new arrival Shakti harnesses her divination powers in a Predictions ceremony. All of Gaialands’ teenagers receive a card outlining their futures. Poppy, predicted to find her true love overseas, joins Lukas when he follows his dream of starting a punk rock band first in Auckland and then on to London, where punk has given way to 80s pop and hair metal. Struggling simply to survive as they navigate the city’s squats, pubs, and burgeoning clubs, she and Lukas drift apart. Poppy finds a life that looks very like the one her prediction promised, but is it the one she truly wants? And if not, can she define her own happiness, even if it takes her in unanticipated directions?
The Predictions is a mesmerizing, magical novel of fate, love, mistakes, and finding your place.
About the Author
Bianca Zander was born in Britain but has lived for the last two decades in New Zealand. She is an established journalist who has written for national magazines and newspapers including the The New Zealand Listener, Sunday Star Times, and Dominion Post. In addition, she has produced radio shows and written for film and television. In 2009, she wrote the dramatic short film The Handover, which screened in competition at the Chicago Film Festival. She holds an MA in creative writing from Victoria University, Wellington. She lives in Auckland with her husband and son. The Girl Below is her first novel.
The Predictions is definitely a novel of fate, love, mistakes and finding your place. We followed Poppy as she discovers her way in the world and develops as an individual. The beginning of the novel is very different from the way we live now, especially since it deals with a bucolic vegan commune where women give birth to children and share the child-rearing responsibilities, including breast feeding. It was interesting to learn about this type of lifestyle, but it was much easier to understand the novel later on when they reached London since it is more relate able to today.
As I mentioned, the novel really followed Poppy and she grows up and discovers herself. It was interesting to see how Poppy began to understand the world and determine what she wants out of her own life. I couldn’t relate all that much to Poppy, but I still enjoyed her as a character. I enjoyed seeing how Poppy made decisions based on the fact that she believed her entire life was already pre-planned.
This novel is definitely a romantic novel and one about a young woman learning to discover who she is as an individual. I enjoyed the novel and think it was well written. It flowed nicely and was an interesting read. Although I found it difficult to connect with Poppy, I think that this novel deserves a read, if only to learn something interesting.
I give this book:
Thank you to
for allowing me to be part of the tour!