Review: The Little Green Book of Chairman Rahma by Brian Herbert

Cover of ARC edition reviewed here
Cover of ARC edition reviewed here

The Little Green Book of Chairman Rahma by Brian Herbert is an eye opening science fiction novel from Tor Books soon to be released in July of 2014. Readers will not be disappointed as the both sides of environmental passion are examined. Deciding which opinion is right suddenly isn’t so clear. Discovering at what lengths some characters might go to achieve power is downright frightening.

The characters are believable if not enlightening. In this fascinating look at our own comparable cultural differences and priorities, readers are introduced to a dark future where the passionate hypocrisy typical of such debates continues to be a danger to the necessary growth of a civilization. In what is intended as a zealous step forward, it most likely will result in a violent fall backwards.

The Army of the Environment (AOE) defeated the large multinational corporations in every major battle of the Corporate War of the Americas lasting from 2041 to 2043. Under the leadership (rather a dictatorship) of Chairman Rahma Popal, North and South America became the Green States of America ruled by radical environmentalists. Their mission statement: “A Golden Age in which all citizens and companies live in harmony with the environment, so that the bulk of the land can be completely transformed, returning it to nature.”

This seems wonderful with good ecological intentions and all, but like every totalitarian form of government, the Chairman’s dictatorship soon becomes the target of rebel forces. The few surviving corporations that went into hiding twenty years earlier after the war are now emerging with new weapons and new alliances from abroad to fight back.

A written testament provided to (and a required possession of) all of the citizens, The Little Green Book is continuous reminder of who is in control. Forced to live on reservations set aside from the more immense territory exclusively preserved for the restoration of nature, the citizens must endure dense populations and raw humility through the rules and guidelines of the book. With quotes from the Chairman Rahma like “In Green we trust,” the mandatory reading is constant reminder of who is in power, and who is playing God.

The Little Green Book of Chairman Rahma is the ultimate examination of a utopian/dystopian future where corporate America and the environmental preservation collide. Brian Herbert has given readers a new look at a never-ending debate. Commercial and ecological differences will always be a concern, but in this thought provoking fictional story, the battle becomes a harsh reality as the fate of human civilization is on the line. Wait, I did say fictional, right?

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