In a future Earth where ghosts from “before” roam the post-apocalyptic landscape, a religion has sprung up around the mystery of these troublesome ghosts and the past they belonged to. Wasp is the current ‘Archivist’, divinely-appointed to trap and research ghosts before dispatching them. Every year she fights younger temple novices for her title, and every year she gets slower, and death comes a little closer. So when the ghost of a super-soldier seeks her help in finding his fallen comrade in the Underworld, Wasp strikes a deal which she hopes will buy her escape from the temple and a life that she hates.
Nicole Kornher-Stace has crafted a fascinatingly realised world, blending genres to create a strikingly original novel. Through Wasp’s journey we explore questions about friendship, morality and personal agency in the face of institutionalised power.