…SF addict …

Sunday, August 19, 2012

The Drowned World by J.G.Ballard

Just finished this 1962 book, one of Ballard's 'Beautiful Dystopias'
Basically sometime in the not-too distant future excessive solar radiation has caused th ice caps to melt, resulting in flooding and the world becoming a tropical wasteland. Now, it sounds a little far-fetched, certainly it would have seemed that way back in the 60s, but not so much nowadays! Yes its extreme, with crocodiles and iguanas emerging from the now-tropical boughs of London, but actually its not that far from what we could in fact be heading for! People reading this book may think, oh my god, he's on about global warming, back in the 60s! And unfortunately that phrase has become oh -oo familiar of late! Due to that label, global warming, people tend to get the wrong idea, because often the climate becomes cold in some places- which is why the correct term is climate change...Anyway I digress-this is a work of fiction and should be treated as such....
It becomes a one-man odyssey to escape the endless heat and verdure and decay all around him, at the same time it becomes a philosophical journey through what the author calls 'archeo-psychic time'. The book tends to dwell on that idea and such passages become heavy and tedious, and you wish to get on with the story. Thankfully it does, and after fighting various bureaucrats and dictatorships the main character Robert Kerans goes off on his own to find the answer to it all......

Its an odd book, but well written in parts full of the 60s New Wave vibe!
Enjoy but remember, science fiction doesn't predict the future, but serves as a warning against what could happen....



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