I thought I had read everything by LeGuin. I somehow missed this one.
It gets four stars because... come on, classic LeGuin.
The story is conceptually good, and the delivery is up to her usual standards. One thing that bugged me a little was the malthusian pessimism was a bit over the top.
The author imagines a world with seven billion people in it (like we have now!) so here's a random list of what that world is like:
* Rampant greenhouse effect
* Grain is so expensive and scarce there's no whiskey anymore
* No cars because no oil
* Portland, Oregon is an overpopulated hellhole where lawyers work out of converted parking buildings.
* Massive famines (92% of world population!)
* Rickets and scurvy are rampant in the US
* Overpopulation makes everyone feel cramped all the time
And so on and so forth