Daniel Vitale

Orphans of Canland | November 15 2022

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Orphans of Canland

"An impressive debut that goes beneath surface issues of climate-apocalypse fiction." -Kirkus Reviews (starred review)


It’s 2088, and the dust has settled on America, decades after an environmental collapse. The eco-totalitarian organization, WORLD, has reconfigured society with the intention of restoring nature. Twelve-year-old eternal optimist Tristan Weekes lives in what he believes must be paradise: Canland, an agrarian California desert-greening project. However, Tristan’s life-defining medical condition, analgesia, prevents him from feeling physical pain, leaving his brain’s stress centers unresponsive to everything from ego-blows to heatwaves.


Well-intended, curious, and wielding a stunning vocabulary, Tristan loves to listen to the subversive theories spouted by his older brother, Dylan, a drug-addicted satellite hacker. He also wants to prove his independence to his mother, Helena, a powerful population control-extremist. Meanwhile, all around him, the survivors of the environmental collapse are just working toward a better tomorrow. But when a slew of violent acts befalls Canland, Tristan must confront certain truths about the community he loves—including his family’s secrets, his own involvement in the horrors enacted by WORLD, and the debts that are owed to the orphans of Canland.


In this work of literary fiction, set against the backdrop of a frighteningly plausible dystopia, Daniel Vitale explores the fate of our planet, the nature of family, and the duty of science, as Orphans of Canland asks: What does it mean to belong on Earth?

About Daniel Vitale

Daniel Vitale is a Jewish-American writer and a graduate of Amherst College. He owns a hockey goalie coaching business. Originally from New York, he lives in Los Angeles with his wife and dog. Orphans of Canland is his first novel.

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"A complicated, rich, and challenging work . . . An impressive debut that goes beneath surface issues of climate-apocalypse fiction." -Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

Read the full review here.

"A richly imagined and deeply felt novel that steers unafraid into the Big Questions." -Ben Loory, author of Tales of Falling and Flying


"Orphans of Canland is an elegant, poetic, sprawling dreamscape. Vitale has artfully constructed a whole other world, and the inner worlds of the characters are equally vast. Touching, frightening, painfully human." -Elvia Wilk, author of Oval


Contact Daniel

or use dvitale15[at]gmail[dot]com

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