In the Before—when terror attacks and viruses hadn't get prompted the government didn't prohibit large public gatherings—musician Luce Cannon was on her way to becoming a star. Now, in the After, Luce is forced into an underground world of illegal gigs—where she meets Rosemary Laws, who is recruiting musicians to star in virtual reality concerts.
By setting this novel in a society where DIY can literally be against the law, Pinsker ups the suspense considerably. To call this novel completely dystopian wouldn’t be entirely accurate, though: there’s a passing reference to states having established a basic income, for instance. It’s a fascinating paradox: elements of this world are utterly terrifying, but Pinsker balances that neatly with elements to show its appeal ... There’s something very zeitgeist-y about what Pinsker does here ... Pinsker’s novel feels very relevant in 2019, she’s also grappling with some classically science fictional themes ... There aren’t many books that can accurately convey the dynamics of a local DIY music scene and tap into a decades-long tradition of speculative fiction. Sarah Pinsker’s A Song for a New Day makes it seem effortless—but in focusing on the taxing nature of the creative process under duress, she also reminds the reader of how difficult 'effortless' can be. Relevant, haunting, and inspiring, this is one of the best books of 2019.
Pinsker’s first novel...is a riveting and plausible look into what our world could be if we become consumed with fear and dependent on social media. It is also a love letter to live music and underground shows, imagining futuristic musical innovations and the punk rebel scene that could emerge in response to a closed-off world. Pinsker tells her story through the eyes of two complex queer women who ground this fascinating, emotional narrative.
Pinsker's first novel...depicts a moving alternate future in which technology provides everything a person could want, except human contact. Themes of virtual reality, humanity, and music are threaded throughout this melodic story.