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Individutopia

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3.59  ·  Rating details ·  292 ratings  ·  101 reviews
THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS SOCIETY

Beloved friend,

The year is 2084, and that famous Margaret Thatcher quote has become a reality: There really is no such thing as society. No one speaks to anyone else. No one looks at anyone else. People don’t collaborate, they only compete.

I hate to admit it, but this has had tragic consequences. Unable to satisfy their social urges, the po
...more
Kindle Edition
Published August 23rd 2018
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Average rating 3.59  · 
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Bandit
Jul 31, 2018 rated it it was ok
Love me a good dystopia. This one, however, had all the subtlety of the freight train. The not too far away future the author imagined, a nightmarish spin out off of Margaret Thatcher’s terrifying quote There is no such thing as society, sees the rise of the individual as a leading mentality, which results in the privatized, monopolized, commercialized oligarchy. It’s pretty much where things are currently headed, but exaggerated for dramatic effect. No, not merely exaggerated, hysterically hype ...more
Steve Pickard
Jul 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Set in a vivid and terrifying dystopian future, Indivdutopia presents a positive message and some thought provoking discussion and observation. Joss Sheldon does a great job of blurring the lines between playful narrative and insightful political commentary. Certain passages felt like simple and silly bubble gum storytelling, but underneath the surface there was always much more going on. Great fun with the narrator, and I'm not sure if the frequent use of i-Objects was meant to repulse those of ...more
Rigby Taylor
Jul 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
One of my pleasures is reading a well-written story that not only entertains, but makes me think. Individutopia is such a book.
Maggie Thatcher’s 1979 political premise that there’s no such thing as society – only lots of individuals, has had an enormous effect on subsequent government policies. Social programmes whittled away and public services and infrastructure privatised so only users pay instead of society sharing the costs, thus allowing successful individual entrepreneurs to accumulate m
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Aaron Curmi
Feb 10, 2019 rated it did not like it
I wanted to like this book. Really. I went into it quite excited with its premise and hoped it would live up to my level of excitement. It didn't. Not even close. In fact, I found myself disappointed and waiting for it to end. It had very few, very brief moments of insight, but that was wholly overshadowed by its other factors.

Generally, I would say I have at least enjoyed every dystopia novel I have read to some degree. This is due to the fact that they point out the glaring problems of societ
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Stephanie Jane (Literary Flits)
Sep 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction-europe
See more of my book reviews on my blog, Literary Flits

October is the month for reading scary novels so I am happy to be starting it by blogging my review of Joss Sheldon's new novel, Individutopia. Set in 2084, a nod to George Orwell's 1984 of course, Sheldon takes Margaret Thatcher's famous statement 'there is no such thing as society' and runs that idea to a horrifically dark conclusion. We see future London through the Plense-covered eyes of our medicated heroine, Renee, and discover just how
...more
Whitney Bookout
Aug 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I was asked to read this book and to provide an honest review.

Dystopian books are not my thing. As a matter of fact, I had to look up the word dystopian after reading some of the reviews. However, if a book is well written and intrigues me within the first chapter or so, I will continue to read on. Joss Sheldon is a great Author. His books intrigue you at first and then you just have to read on. I finished the book in a couple of days, and up until the ending, I loved it. But not from a "dystopi
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Ryan
May 04, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I tend to really like dystopian novels, especially economic dystopian novels, but this one was just horrible in most ways a book can be horrible -- gratingly badly written prose, too-obvious and telegraphed plot, lack of redeeming interesting characters, etc. It feels like an L Ron Hubbard style "write a book about this topic on a drunken dare", only worse.
Jamrock
May 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
“Individutopia: A Warning From History”⁣⁣
⁣⁣
“She held lectures in the longhouse, teaching about the perils of individualism, personal responsibility and hard work. She shocked children and adults alike with her tales of working for the sake of working, chasing impossible dreams and ignoring other people.”⁣⁣
⁣⁣
Brilliant and bleak, speaks to the heart of the challenges faced by society today. Should be compulsory reading in secondary schools but, hey, academies wouldn’t want the youth reading stuff
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Joseph J Clark
May 09, 2019 rated it it was ok
One star for socialist leanings, one star for being quite short.

What a terribly written, internet forum fan-fic of a novel. Novella. Whatever.
Aran Joseph
Jul 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
Joss Sheldon has a penchant for reviving old genres. In Money Power Love he wrote a modern picaresque. His Individutopia might at first resemble modern classical works of dystopias like Brave New World or 1984 but in fact is more akin to the utopias created by Thomas More or Francis Bacon. Allow me to explain.

In 1984 and Brave New World the authors chose to write novels that portrayed dystopian futures. The characters were real, the plots involved—in all ways they were like any other novel excep
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Charles Ray
Aug 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
In 2084, there is no such thing as society. The cult of the individual reigns supreme. But, for one individual, one day the path to self-discovery reveals itself. Individutopia by Josh Sheldon is a dystopian tale that takes the current obsession with individualism to its ultimate extreme. Most of the world’s wealth is owned by a few individuals—does that ring any bells?—and the individual is allowed earn just enough income to survive, but never to be able to escape the heavy burden of debt. Rene ...more
Kerstin Vollbrecht
Aug 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
In a world where each person lives disconnected from other people and from nature, Renee seeks the company of other persons, love and friendship. Even though she has never known any other way of living than being all alone, only accompanied by her avatars, and never having had any contact with any other human being, in Renee begins to manifest the strange sensation that this way is not enough. So she leaves her place in search for human company and she discovers that the real world is quite diff ...more
Shefali
Oct 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
Dystopian novels are not much of my cup of tea, I’ve only ventured as far as established classics such as 1984 and have enjoyed it. So with Individutopia, I was a bit sceptical, but all my doubts were gone once I read it. Indeed, it is a good read based on the very premise of Thatcher’s quote and set in the not so distant future. For me, what is important is not the author’s portrayal of a bleak future, but rather the author’s intention to give us a kind of a wake-up call of sorts, to make us se ...more
Laura Ruetz
May 27, 2020 rated it really liked it
I've read a lot of dystopian novels. They can take a variety of directions but Individutopia is absolutely unique in the direction it goes, and the extremes that are reached in terms of the breakdown of society. This is a an extreme dystopian future, in which there is no society, just individuals, all competing against each other to be the best. There is no we, just I. From breathing to walking, your very existence is a ticking debt counter - meaningless jobs are done to try to bring that debt d ...more
Josephh
Aug 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Individutopia is not a book for those who are lighthearted. There are themes, actions, thoughts, and situations that can be disturbing. So, I don’t want to say keep away, but be wary of what is to come. Putting that aside, Individutopia is a book of humanity’s potential and all too real future. The main theme of this book is society. How nowadays people blame society for their problems Blame society for all their failures. Now, in this future, there is no society and no human interaction. So, in ...more
Richard Sutton
Jul 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
Few writers can sling a pen with equal shares of humor, emotion and pure sarcasm, but Joss Sheldon has pulled it off perfectly! Individutopia is the Brave New World for the i-Generation. In an often annoying but very entertaining way, she tells the story of Renee who has just discovered there is more to working and consuming and measuring herself against all others. Constant competition may fuel an exceptionalist social philosophy, but here, author Sheldon trashes the excesses and losses of such ...more
Rebecca
Aug 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
Individutopia is enjoyable to read, whether you read it at face value or consider the political/dystopian elements of the plot. Now, I’m not much of a politician, so don’t expect too much rambling from me on that side of the fence. I do think some of the ideas, although extreme, are interesting though. I’ll discuss that in more detail later.


Our narrator is a consistent 3rd person, following the life of Renee Ann Blanca quite intimately. Born into a world with scarcely any human contact, she is
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Phillip
This is a quick, fun dystopian novel based on the neoliberal ideal of complete individualism, the absolute dominance of a market-based worldview, and the utter elimination of any form of cooperation. Sheldon begins with Maggie Thatcher's statement that there is no such thing as society, and imagines an entire world created and run on that premise--where individuals never interact with one another, are entirely self-focused (even losing knowledge of words like 'you,' 'them,' and 'us') and exist e ...more
Mina Chrys
Sep 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
I came by this book via Booktasters.

It follows Renee Ann Blanca, during a sorry future where there is no society and each person is left to fend by themselves, work is nonsensical, as are routine and interaction with avatars who tell her what she wants to hear, more importantly, there is no purpose, no goal. As it so happens, Renee follows apath of realization, and embarks on a mission to find another being with whom to interact, there are other “others” who cross paths with her, and each of the
...more
Ellen Christian
Aug 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Book provided for review.

If you can imagine a world where society no longer exists, all clothing brands are Nike and Nestle has monopolized the food supply, you’re part way there. Next, imagine a world where we live almost entirely online with avatars to interact with and made up people to like our tweets and our photos.

In Renee’s world, everyone is concerned only with themselves. They don’t interact with other people or even acknowledge that they exist. They work because they have to be the bes
...more
Andrew Coulthard
Jun 23, 2019 rated it it was ok
There's quite a good book in there somewhere but somehow this lacks the writing skill to help me build any feelings towards its characters or any coherence in the storyline. A series of too many very small spectacles float around in an otherwise confusing thread.

There was nothing in the beginning to connect me to the end.

Clearly, the author can think and project this thinking into a dystopian and desperate human existence but the storyteller's craft is missing in all its forms.

AJ Valls
Jun 26, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I thought the book had some great ideas and for those, I gave two stars. I didn't feel comfortable with the author's writing style nor did I feel attached to the story thread. At some points, I didn't understand the story thread.

Others might enjoy this book, I'm sorry but I didn't.
Robin Levin
Jul 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Joss Sheldon’s indivutopia is a Swiftian satire depiction human life in the latter part of the 21st century if present economic, social, political and technological trends continue toward their logical conclusion.
The socio-economic trend is set in motion in 1979 when British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher announces “There is no such thing as society.” From that point on, everyone is an individual responsible for himself or herself and for no one else. Freed from all restraint, the oligarchs am
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Marco De Cristofaro
Oct 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
When I started to read Individutopia, I was watching the TV series House of cards and I immediately feel a familiarity between the styles of the two very interesting “works of art”.

Even the most distracted reader might recognize and be disoriented by the unexpected effect of the narrator who directly addresses to the audience, either spectator or reader.
In addition to this perfectly structured narrative aspect, there is the functional beginning in Medias Res which takes the reader straight into
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Sarah
Jul 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
"This is not a prophecy, this is a warning."
Yikes. Egad. Oh Dear.
Sheldon's latest work presents a fast-paced, thoroughly brutal look at the world we live in and the threat to our future. The seemingly dystopian description of a year 2084 where there is no society is based on 4 basic premises and trends which have clearly developed in the years since 1979 and Margaret Thatcher's statement “There is no such thing as society. There are individual men and women, and there are families. And no gover
...more
Kutloano
Oct 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
Individutopia is a dystopian novel set in a period not too far off from the present and gives a reflection on the trajectory our current society is headed (or if you will, the death of society).

Joss Sheldon writes with simple prose to highlight the absurdities of the contemporary human condition, such as being expected to express your individualism by conforming to consumerism and brand names. Economics; which has become religion-like in the past two centuries and has no scientific basis nor rea
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Lynn Dixon
Jan 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
Joss Sheldon’s Individutopia is hinged on Margaret Thatcher’s famous words, “There is no such thing as society.” Sheldon takes a futuristic look at what life will look like in 2084, about 65 tears from now.
Renee is a 24-year old Londoner is extremely self-indulged. Her entire life is surrounded by her own improved image, and she even wakes up to the sound recording of her own voice. She is oblivious to the existence of others and sees everyone else as her competition.
Her entire days are spent
...more
Melissa Martin-Shaw
Jul 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A deeply satisfying read, Sheldon’s newest novel is in the same classic format that readers of his previous work will know and love. In a time where political polarity and provocative content are at an all-time high, Sheldon manages to balance a thought-provoking and intellectual debate on society, people and politics through a thoroughly entertaining plot.

The dystopian novel is far from new, but the entertainment factor in this book is in a class of its own. I really enjoy this author because
...more
Katie
Aug 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: book
Are you a fan of “classical” dystopian novels? Oh? What do I mean by classical? Huxley, Orwell, Vonnegut, you name it, they are one of my favourites and then after supernatural and YA dystopian novels, on a different place all together stands Joss Sheldon! I’ve read most of his books, and I loved them all. He always brings something to his books that make them so real and so relatable that you walk on the street, see something and the first things that comes to your mid it: “doesn’t it remind me ...more
Galya Varna
Aug 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Joss Sheldon’s outstanding dystopian novel “Individutopia” makes the reader think twice about the 21st century cult to individualism and shows what it would be to live in an I-person world.

The book is set in 2084 which immediately makes us think of Orwell’s “1984” but in contrast to the dystopian classic where individualism and independent thinking are persecuted, in Sheldon’s Individutopian world the famous Margaret Thatcher quote has become a reality: “There really is no such thing as society
...more
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Joss Sheldon is a scruffy nomad, unchained free-thinker, and post-modernist radical. Born in 1982, he was brought up in one of the anonymous suburbs which wrap themselves around London's beating heart. Then he escaped!

With a degree from the London School of Economics to his name, Sheldon had spells selling falafel at music festivals, being a ski-bum, and failing to turn the English Midlands into a
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