Sputnik's Children

Sputnik's Children

by Terri Favro
  • from-ontario
  • literary
  • sci-fi-fantasy
  • women-s

A literary, genre-bending novel full of heart Cult comic book creator Debbie Reynolds Biondi has been riding the success of her Cold War era–inspired superhero series, Sputnik Chick: Girl with No Past, for more than 25 years.

But with the comic book losing fans and Debbie struggling to come up with new plotlines for her badass, mutant-killing heroine, she decides to finally tell Sputnik Chick’s origin story. Debbie’s never had to make anything up before and she isn’t starting now.

Sputnik Chick is based on Debbie’s own life in an alternate timeline called Atomic Mean Time. As a teenager growing up in Shipman’s Corners — a Rust Belt town voted by Popular Science magazine as “most likely to be nuked” — she was recruited by a self-proclaimed time traveller to collapse Atomic Mean Time before an all-out nuclear war grotesquely altered humanity. In trying to save the world, Debbie risked obliterating everyone she’d ever loved — as well as her own past — in the process. Or so she believes . . . Present-day Debbie is addicted to lorazepam and dirty, wet martinis, making her an unreliable narrator, at best.

A time-bending novel that delves into the origin story of the Girl with No Past, Sputnik’s Children explores what it was like to come of age in the Atomic Age.


Terri Favro, author

Terri Favro's novel Sputnik's Children (ECW ) was chosen as one of the Globe & Mail's 100 Best Books of 2017, CBC Books Top 10 Canadian Fiction Books of 2017, and Quill & Quire Best Books of 2017. Her latest novel is Once Upon A Time in West Toronto (Inanna). In February 2018, her book Generation Robot: A Century of Science Fiction, Fact and Speculation will be published by Skyhorse Publishing. She also collaborates with Toronto artist Ronald Edding on the "Bella" series of graphic novels (Grey Border Books). Her novella, The Proxy Bride (Quattro), was a winner of the 2012 Quattro Ken Klonsky Novella Award. Terri is a shortlisted finalist for the CBC Literary Prize in Creative Non-Fiction and has been published in major Canadian literary journals including Geist, Riddle Fence, Broken Pencil, ROOM and Prism. Her articles have also appeared in Accenti Magazine and MORE (Canada). Terri blogs at http://www.terrifavro.ca


  • Favro’s ("The Proxy Bride") highly entertaining tale is told by Debbie Biondi, the aging writer of the fantastically popular comic series "Sputnik Chick". After 25 years, the comic is losing fans, and Debbie needs to win them back by writing a superb origin story for her character. But since she is Sputnik Chick, it’s her own troubled history that she must force herself to write. Her story begins in a parallel timeline, which split from our own in 1945 with the Trinity nuclear test in Mexico. This new timeline, Atomic Mean Time is going to be obliterated in a nuclear catastrophe unless 13 year-old Debbie, growing up in radioactive Canusa, crosses timelines to save it. The story of how and why she crossed becomes the meat of the novel, interspersed with the stories of present-day Debbie’s adult life falling apart: she’s relying heavily on martinis and tranquilizers, sleeping with the wrong guys. Favro successfully crams romance, the Cold War, suburbia, time travel, discussions of racism, a coming-of-age narrative, and more into a single book, using the contrast between the two timelines to highlight both good and bad aspects of current society. Funny, touching, genre-bending, and one-of-a-kind, this is an exuberant romp of a novel that is nonetheless unafraid of serious subjects. - Publishers Weekly Link to review
  • In this arresting debut novel, Favro ("The Proxy Bride", 2012) has crafted a delightful, timey-wimey gem that manages to temper its phantasmagorical imagery with the authentic pain of losing everything that one loves... Favro walks an incredible narrative tightrope here, balancing present-day Debbie's sad, inebriated reality with Atomic Mean Time Debbie's frightening world of duck-and-cover exercises, DNA-enhanced ‘twisties,’ and imminent nuclear threats... A noodle-bending literary sci-fi novel that puts its hero in the box with Schrödinger's cat. - Kirkus Reviews Link to review

Rights Holder

Rights Holder: Carolyn Swayze Literary Agency

email: carolyn@swayzeagency.com

website: http://www.swayzeagency.com/

rights available: World, excl. North America

Additional Information

number of pages: 360

publication date: 04/21/2017

Original language of pub: English

Materials Available: finished book