In Part 1 of this series, we featured five outstanding classic works of fiction that touch upon animal rights themes ranging from the meat industry, vegetarian monsters to future societies inhabited by vegans or vegetarians. In this installment, we highlight the works of five contemporary authors, many of whom have received widespread mainstream literary acclaim for these outstanding works of fiction.
From the author of the Fight Club, Lullaby is a grim, disturbing and sometimes humorous look at modern society and morality. The plot revolves around a reporter who discovers a poem that is actually a “culling song,” and can kill whoever hears it. As always, Palahniuk manages to create some very quirky main characters, including a vegan, eco-terrorist named Oyster. Although Oyster is a bit of a stereotype and not a very likable character, some of his rants about the way humans treat our planet and exploit animals are fairly thought provoking.
The main character in this science fiction series is ‘Prot’, a fruitarian alien from a planet called K-pax, who finds himself in New York and is quickly locked in a psychiatric institution. K-pax is described by Prot as a world built on anarchist principles, without corporate laws or religions and where beings are peaceful and nonviolent vegans. The novels explore the nature of ‘truth’ and was made into a movie (in 2001), starring Kevin Spacey and Jeff Bridges.
Science fiction horror that explores the subject of speciesism in a clever and disturbing manner. The book follows a mysterious woman (Isserley), an alien who’s job it is to pick up hitch-hiking ‘beefy’ men who later become fattened up for meat delicacies in her home world. It is the son of the owner of this hunting operation, Amlis Vess (a vegetarian), who affects Isserley’s views on human flesh.
PopCo is vegan author Scarlett Thomas’ 6th novel and covers topics ranging from capitalism, advertising, math, codes, animal welfare, veganism and homeopathy. The novel also includes a vegan cake recipe of a cake that is eaten by the characters in the book. PopCo’s protagonist is Alice, a code breaker and crossword-puzzle compiler who works for a multinational toy company. She is sent to a Thought Camp where she and other PopCo employees must invent the ultimate product for teenage girls. Alice starts receiving mysterious, encrypted messages, which she suspects relate to her grandfather’s decoding of a an old manuscript or could mean that she is at the the center of an evil plot hatched by her employer.
Yes, vegans can have a sense of humor! This novel takes a simple premise and delivers some hilarious results. Thanks to a new drug, animals no longer feel pain as they are led to slaughter. Unfortunately, once the drug enters the food supply, anyone who eats it is turned into a zombie (except the vegans of course!). Vegans, freegans, abolitionists, hardliners and raw foodists are holed up in Food Fight, Portland Oregan’s famous vegan grocery as they prepare to do battle with the undead. Fans of zombie or bizarro fiction will love this book and so will vegans, because David (a vegan himself) does a great job of throwing in several inside jokes about animal rights and vegan culture that will surely keep you entertained.