For the time being, Ecstasy Club is a bit under the radar. Fans of Rushkoff and those circles are aware, but it isn't a particularly famous novel. I bFor the time being, Ecstasy Club is a bit under the radar. Fans of Rushkoff and those circles are aware, but it isn't a particularly famous novel. I believe one day that will change and this book will get the recognition it deserves.
As we drift away from the time period of the 90s, the generation of my youth, and our memories glamorize and stereotype, eventually this book is going to be remembered as one of the defining works capturing the soul of that era. The cultural identity of the 90s will not forgotten.
You see, I was there and we all thought rave was going to be our punk. That was going to be the next big thing, our contribution to the ages, and it was going to change the world. But it wasn't, it didn't, and in the end it only burnt itself out and then it died. That is the tragedy Rushkoff so brilliantly portrayed in Ecstasy Club.
I find it hard to believe that this is Rushkoff's first novel, yet that's what he says. It has all the cyberpunk-hacker-coutnerculture-mystical themes you expect from Rushkoff, but it's so terribly readable. The love drama of Zach and Kirsten and Lauren and Duncan; the conflict between our protaganist as damage control Levite and the charming cult leader guru Duncan ready to shift our dimensional reality. And the intricacies of the pseudo-Scientologist conspiracy and insanities of the drug culture perfectly bend your mind enough to question yours and Zach's realities. The novel isn't just a good intelligencia journey though, its actually a fun read. I breezed through the book, eager to see what happens to the diverse cast of characters next, laughed at the clever refferences, and was sad to see it end too soon.
Ecstasy Club is simultaneously one of the most mentally engaging and entertaining books I've read in a long time.
Rushkoff's nonfiction is always engaging, and his new comics are spot-on, but personally I hope he has a few more novels in him....more