Normal

Normal

Book - 2016
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"Some people call it "abyss gaze." Gaze into the abyss all day and the abyss will gaze into you. There are two types of people who think professionally about the future: Foresight strategists are civil futurists who think about geoengineering and smart cities and ways to evade Our Coming Doom; strategic forecasters are spook futurists, who think about geopolitical upheaval and drone warfare and ways to prepare clients for Our Coming Doom. The former are paid by nonprofits and charities, the latter by global security groups and corporate think tanks. For both types, if you're good at it, and you spend your days and nights doing it, then it's something you can't do for long. Depression sets in. Mental illness festers. And if the abyss gaze takes hold there's only one place to recover: Normal Head, in the wilds of Oregon, within the secure perimeter of an experimental forest. When Adam Dearden, a foresight strategist, arrives at Normal Head, he is desperate to unplug and be immersed in sylvan silence. But then a patient goes missing from his locked bedroom, leaving nothing but a pile of insects in his wake. A staff investigation ensues; surveillance becomes total. As the mystery of the disappeared man unravels in Warren Ellis's Normal, Adam uncovers a conspiracy that calls into question the core principles of how and why we think about the future--and the past, and the now."-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York : Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2016
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9780374534974
0374534977
9780374712631
Branch Call Number: FICTION Ell
Characteristics: 148 pages ; 19 cm

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PearlyBaker
Dec 13, 2016

This short novel reminded me of the old Kris Kristofferson lyric, "When they prove something wrong you believed in so long you go crazy." However, I'd say Shipwrecked in the 80's said more in one song than Warren seems to in an entire novel. This is my second Ellis piece and while I find him to be an engaging and interesting writer it's almost as if he tries too hard to be unique and intellectual. He reminds me of all those Indy films that attempt to be so mysterious and unique but come off looking like the same film about nothing that go absolutely nowhere.

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