When a class war erupts inside a luxurious apartment block, modern elevators become violent battlegrounds and cocktail parties degenerate into marauding attacks on “enemy” floors. In this visionary tale, human society slips into violent reverse as once-peaceful residents, driven by primal urges, re-create a world ruled by the laws of the jungle.
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Anthony Royal built the Titanic of skyscrapers.
A state of the art, megalithic structure suitable for 2,000 tenants. It is a self-contained environment with everything a tenant would need such as shopping or exercise or even schools for their kids. The people the building attracts are white collar, well educated, professionals. The apartments sell out quickly and as everyone start to settle into their new li ...more
⇨ Luxury Living - To Die For! ⇦
Our extra-ordinary apartment complex is a full-service microcosm and so offers all the comforting amenities and thrilling excitements of the modern world - in one lavish locale. Imagine never having to step foot outside again! Whether your interests include swimming, shopping, the education of youngsters, simply lounging about without a care... or even more outré amusements such as rape, murder, incest, cannibalism, and the creating of ...more
"Psst, four-eyes! Over here!"
It was J.G. Ballard's novel, "High-Rise" , talking to me.
"Don't you look like a jolly chap! All happy and stuff. Not a worry in the world. And so decent! Why are you so goddamn decent all the time?"
"Huh? Are you supposed to be talking?"
"I do whatever I damn well please! Tell me, you look like the kind of goody two shoes who actually LI ...more
A disturbing/enthralling allegory - class struggle, self deception, and the animalistic brutality concealed just below the surface of human civilization.
I knew of Ballard from the new-wave SF of the late 60s / early 70s, particularly Harlan Ellison's Dangerous Visions compilations, wherein he's described - by Ellison in his story introduction - as one of the few mainstream lit crossovers coming from the world of speculative fiction. He is an eloquently gifted writer, str ...more
Later, as he sat on his balcony eating the dog, Dr Robert Laing reflected on the unusual events that had taken place within this huge apartment building during the previous three months.This is one instance where I'm painfully aware of the inadequacy of a star-rating system for books. To give Ballard's High-Rise three stars does very little to capture its strengths, but more importantly, its ultimate failure as a novel. I'm going to try and do that in my review here, but just in case my ramblin ...more
(برج - جی.جی. بالارد (چشمه
عنوان: برج: نویسنده: جیمز گراهام بالارد؛ مترجم: علی اصغر بهرامی؛ تهران، نشر چشمه، 1380، در 284 ص؛ شابک: 9789643620172؛ چاپ سوم بهار 1388؛ موضوع: داستانهای نویسندگان انگلیسی قرن 20 م
برج یکی از آثار کلاسیک علمی تخیلی پسا رستاخیزی، و پاد آرمانشهری محسوب میشود. داستان این رمان در یک برج بسیار مدرن و لوکس روی میدهد برجی که به گونه ای طراحی شده تا همه ی نیازهای ساکنان خویش را برآورده، و به نوعی آنها را از دنیای بیرون از برج م ...more
High-Rise is not an easy novel to fit into a specific genre. It's not exacly science-fiction because the time frame is contemporary England (cca. 1975). Yet the novel does try to use a scientific approach to the study of human behaviour - psychology. So, I guess you can call it 'soft' SF. You can also call it a dystopian novel, a horror novel or a thriller, but for me the best description is as an adult, x-rated version of "Lord of the Flies"
Now the new order had emerged, in which all l ...more
Other than Crash, High-Rise is the only other thing that I have ever been interested in reading by Ballard. I saw the film adaptation with Tom Hiddleston, which I enjoyed (although felt it was a little style over substance), so when I saw that the audiobook was narrated by Hiddleston himself, I decided to try Ballard again in a slightly different form.
Hiddleston is a great narrator, and even employs different accents in his reading w ...more
Any book that promises rich people acting all Lord of the Flies on one another is going to catch my interest. And this one caught my attention and was pretty successful at holding it.
The book takes place in a 1960's/70's version of a state of the art high rise apartment complex. It's an almost totally self-co ...more
Originally posted at Fantasy Literature
MOVIE UPDATE: I finally got around to watching the 2015 film version of High Rise, directly by Ben Wheatley and starring Tom Hiddleston, Jeremy Irons, Siena Miller, Luke Evans, and Elizabeth Moss. How to assess? Well, it is a valiant attempt to replicate Ballard's bizarre and surrealistic story of social elites battling the lower classes in a fancy new high-rise and willfully descending into barbarism ...more
All is well, initially, as the building fills up with tenants who only need to leave to go to work - the building itself has gyms, swimming pools, supermarkets, hairdressers, restaurants and other shops and services. Soon after the last apartment is occupied, however, things take a strange turn. Services such as elevato ...more
Petty conflicts between the different floors escalate alarmingly quickly to extreme levels.
We are following three main characters from each of the different classes/floors who represent their peers (grouped by job status). Each character does have his own personality and is not a complete slave to his class stereotype - the individual experiences are just as interesting as the the whole social picture.
The violen ...more
Okay, having collected my thoughts, here are the points I think worth mentioning.
*I loved the book. Just fucking LOVED the book. As in, "I will read everything this author ever wrote" loved the book. My first impression was that this is Lord of the Flies for adults. I enjoyed this a lot more than I did Golding's book.
From here on out, the whole thing is pretty much one big spoiler. S ...more
We open on the balcony of one Robert Laing, who is noshing on a partially eaten dog and thinking with wonder about the events of the past months which have brought him to his current situation.
Not a bad way to begin a book. I'm down.
As the story unfolds, we are introduced to the High Rise - an ultra-modern luxury apartment building, 40 stories ...more
But I had issues with the book: firstly, I was increasingly uncomfortable with the women in this text (vulnerable wives open to sexual assault, passive victims, evil witch-like figures, Freudian-destructive mothers - not a single woman written on an even level with the men), ...more
I just deleted 50 sentences of rambling.Not ready to write this.
Six hours later: I know what bother's me. This is not about a general societal collapse. Funny, that I can handle. This is something more insidious. This is a group, a collective, who all deliberately ch ...more
I wish I'd read this before moving into the house that I first moved into when I arrived in Boulder, because of how eerily accurate some of the events of the first half of the book are. The house I moved into was a big old ramshackle ranch-style house, with three bedrooms on the g ...more
"In a sense life in the high-rise had begun to resemble the world outside - there were the same ruthlessness and aggression concealed within a set of polite conventions."
Why me ??!! :(
I see all these positive ratings and it makes me despondent to realise that, I probably read this book all wrong...so definitely a case of its not you but me. I understand that the basic premise of the book was decay of any given society from within. (I vaguely recall reading in school about theories of decline of ...more
If you took "The Lord of the Flies" and "A Clockwork Orange" and threw them together in a blender, you would get a book that would be a lot like "High-Rise": creepy, over the top, disturbingly plausible in some ways, really infuriating in others. Basically, you'd get something weirdly fascinating, which will understandably not be everyone's cup of tea. I suppose I like my tea dystopian and gross, because I loved it!
I'm pretty sure that no one ever accused J.G. Ballard of being ...more
"Later, as he sat on his balcony eating the dog, Dr. Robert Laing reflected on the unusual events that had taken place within this huge apartment building during the previous three months."Let's face it, when you have a character calmly eating a dog on a balcony, some serious social norms have broken down.
On the surface High-Rise is about the breakdown of social order in a modern high-rise apartment. As the building functions break down (trash disposal, water, power, etc.) so too do the social ...more
Two thousand residents in an expensive high rise in London ‘short circuit’ and turn feral. As to what shenanigans they get up to: nobody explains it better than Mark in his wonderful revie ...more
“Later, as he sat on the balcony eating the dog, Dr. Robert Laing reflected on the unusual events that had taken place within this huge apartment building during the previous months.”
The novel essentially starts at its ending. But Laing does have a story to tell. What starts out as some minor vandalism between the floor inhabitants, escalates into violence, murde ...more
Of all the new modern classic editions I've read, Ballard's book get the biggest advertising shunt. Probably because Ballard was never anti-capitalist as such: he seemed to delight in the digitisation o ...more
A premissa de J.G Ballard é eficaz,directa e prontamente servida aos leitores. Somos rapidamente colocados no contexto emocional do livro, e o primeiro grande triunfo é a forma como afectivamente somos enquadrados no pulso certo do livro. Não quero,nesta revisão ( como em nenhuma) revelar demais do conteúdo da obra,mas torna-se difícil evitar em absoluto algumas leituras e interpreta ...more