Nik Abnett started writing this, her second novel, on the first day the UK went into lockdown. Unfolding events sparked her imagination, causing her to wonder how drastically different society might be in the aftermath were the pandemic to really take hold…
Dharma Tuke inhabits a near future which has been skilfully reshaped by social engineering in the wake of the Deluge – a worldwide pandemic that shattered the old order. What emerged was a society where people are accustomed to walking through chemical Wipes when entering a building or even a different room, and where the role of family has been deliberately marginalised, under the ‘new normal’.
But Dharma is curious, and sets about quietly researching her past, tracing her recent ancestry in hope of finding living relatives, and discovering what life was like both before and during the Deluge. What she unwittingly uncovers will have far reaching repercussions both for herself and for the whole of society.
The story develops in two timelines as we follow Dharma’s search for her roots and also see how her recent ancestor Blythe Dole and her family cope with loving and loss in an ever-shrinking world as the Deluge takes hold and personal liberties are curtailed.
In The Wipe, Nik Abnett has produced a narrative that is sometimes touching, sometimes harrowing, but always fascinating; a tale of determination and perseverance against the odds and, ultimately, a story about the importance of family, friendship, and love.
“An intriguing take on the effectiveness and outcomes of anti-pandemic measures, The Wipe also opens questions of freedom and the human need for connection... Read this now.” – Aurealis
“I enjoyed this one. It was an interesting take on the present situation and how it might develop... The ending is very clearly a breath of fresh air for the story, implying things will sort themselves out given the chance.” – LibraryThing
Available as a paperback and as a special hardback edition signed by the author. and limited to just 60 numbered copies.