Remnant Population

Elizabeth Moon
Remnant Population Cover

Remnant Population


Remnant Population by Elizabeth Moon is not what I would call a "Hard Science" Fiction novel, even though it is listed as such. It is the story of Ofelia, a woman part of an off-world colony, who after 40 years working to colonize an unnamed planet, are told by their corporation that they are being moved off world to try to another planet. At it's heart, this novel is the classical struggle of Technology vs. Traditions, a thematic vision that science fiction writers have been discussing almost since the advent of the genre. Ms. Moon puts her own personal spin on it by adding the additional layer of agism and the negation of the abilities of the elderly to add to society. Both her family and the corporation see Ofelia as a burden with nothing left to contribute to society. , but she ultimately proves them wrong in a most spectacular manner.

Written in 1996, the Author Elizabeth Moon, would have been about 50 years old at that time. She would have seen first hand as the "Silent Generation" was slowly marginalized by the maturing "Baby Boomers". It is no wonder she wrote a novel showing the value of an elderly woman.

As for the novel itself, all I can say is I hope I will be an old woman like Ofelia. Full of spunk and sass, this is a novel about a woman finally able to find her own voice after years of servitude to a family, society and corporation that did not appreciate her. She makes several references to both physical and mental abuse she suffered at the hands of her husband and son and daughter-in-law. It is only when she makes the dscision to move past her family and society hat she finds her own voice and strength that must have been simmering in her for years. An Excellent book I'm glad I have read now that I am "of a certain age". I have already recommended it to both of my parents.