By J. G. Ballard

ISBN-10: 031242034X

ISBN-13: 9780312420345

On an afternoon in April, simply after 3 o'clock within the afternoon, Robert Maitland's motor vehicle crashes over the concrete parapet of a high-speed street onto the island less than, the place he's injured and, ultimately, trapped. What starts as a virtually ludicrous drawback quickly becomes horror as Maitland—a wickedly smooth Robinson Crusoe—realizes that, regardless of proof of different population, this doomed terrain has turn into a replicate of his personal brain. looking the darkish outer rim of the standard, Ballard weaves deepest disaster into an intensely specular allegory.

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Maitland gathered the photographs together and put them back into the case. From an empty tissue-box he took out a brown paper bag. Inside it were the materials of a pot-smoker's kit - scraps of burnt silver foil, detached filter stubs, loose tobacco from broken cigarettes, a small block of hashish, cigarette papers and a roller, and a box of matches. Replacing the paper bag, Maitland weighed the matchbox in his hand. His eyes moved swiftly around the room. From the packing case he pulled out the paraffin stove.

You can't be too bad. ' She put her strong hand to Maitland's forehead and held it there, then briskly pulled out the primus stove and carried it into the sunlight at the bottom of the stairwell. 'Your fever's gone. We were worried about you last night. You're the sort of man who has to test himself all the time. ' When Maitland regarded her patiently she went on, 'I'm not joking - believe me, self-destruction is something I know all about. ' She lit the primus and set three eggs boiling in the pan.

Though clumsy, his body still had a certain power and athletic poise. As he swayed from side to side on his small feet Maitland saw that he moved with the marred grace of an acrobat or punch-drunk sparring partner who had gone down the hard way. He continually touched his face, like a boxer flicking away the sting of a sharp blow. ' Jane asked. The man shook his head. He bounced from one foot to the next like a child too busy to visit the lavatory. 'Locked,' he announced in a gruff voice. ' Tm surprised - I thought you could break anything.

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Concrete Island: A Novel by J. G. Ballard


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