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Movies, dining and things to do / Spokane and North Idaho

‘Red Clocks’ imagines a post-abortion America


Even in today's era of social media, not to mention the Oprah Winfrey Book Club, it's still a mark of quality to get mentioned in the New York Times Book Review section. Especially when the mention is positive.

That's exactly what happened to writer Leni Zumas, whose novel "Red Clocks" was reviewed on Jan. 22 in the Times. Even better for area readers, Zumas will appear in person at a book event at 7 p.m. Thursday at Auntie's Bookstore.

Zumas' novel is set in an imaginary near future when abortion has been made illegal in all 50 states by federal decree. Zumas focuses on four women living in a small town in Oregon, and it details their struggles to handle this new legal situation.

As Times reviewer Naomi Alderman wrote, "Red Clocks" does a good job of capturing the potential climate in today's America.

"Zumas has a perfectly tuned ear for the way measures to restrict women’s lives and enforce social conformity are couched in the moralizing sentimentalism of children’s imagined needs,” Alderman wrote. And, she adds, Zumas’ book offers “such a clear and well-constructed extrapolation of the current debate that I doubt any reader will need to suspend disbelief for even a moment."

Zumas will appear in conversation with Alexis Smith. This should be a popular event, so those wanting seats should get to the store early.

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