Calendar Girls by Justina Ireland shows us a future where women’s rights have been trampled by a corrupt government. It’s a terrifying version of the world, one where the United States has flown down the rabbit hole of hatred and ignorance. Ireland gives us a powerful protagonist who ignites the status quo by the end. These women continue to fight, no matter the obstacles, and they won’t stop until equality is had. This is a future we need to work our hardest to prevent, one that should scare you into action.
There are a few spoilers below, so beware if you want the collection unspoiled!
There are two major takeways from the story. The first is the absurdity and hypocrisy of politicians who say one thing and do another. Those who fight their hardest against the rights of women, but look the other way when it affects someone they love. The story depicts a deep corruption at the top of the government, one that is used to shed light on the rampant prejudices that need to be checked.
The second major takeaway is the never-ending fight, both on and off the streets. Rights have been shattered, a police state is almost in effect, and women continue to fight against it. A revolution brews and our protagonist becomes a big part of it. It’s inspiring to see a future where people haven’t given up, where change is still possible no matter how far we are from what’s right.
This is a future that will make you angry, one that will make you want to stand up and shout at the unfairness of it all. It’s horrifying to realize it’s almost a snapshot of the actual past that should have been left in the gutter.
Calendar Girls is included in the brilliant anthology, A People’s Future of the United States, available for sale on February 5. Order it now!
NOTE: I was provided a free copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for my honest, unbiased review.
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