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Immobility Hardcover – April 10, 2012


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Tor Books; 1St Edition edition (April 10, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0765330962
  • ISBN-13: 978-0765330963
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.8 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,346,055 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Immobility’s bleak landscape and doubting yet relentless protagonist display Brian Evenson, one of our best and bravest novelists, at his most probing and mordant. The book might almost be the product of a collaboration between the younger Samuel Beckett and the mid-career Buster Keaton. No one else in America is writing like this, and no one but he possesses Evenson's ravishing, diamond-like focus.”
—Peter Straub, New York Times bestselling author of A Dark Matter

 

 “Evenson is stunning, a postapocalyptic Dashiell Hammett, in this blistering tale. I read Immobility from cover to cover without stirring from my chair, and I imagine most readers will share that fate.”
—Jesse Ball, Plimpton Prize–winning author of The Curfew

 “Brian Evenson is one of the treasures of American story writing.”
 —Jonathan Lethem, New York Times bestselling author of Chronic City


"There is not a more intense, prolific or apocalyptic writer of fiction in America than Brian Evenson."
—George Saunders, New York Times bestselling author of The Braindead Megaphone

"Brian Evenson is one of the most distinguished, probing, and courageous writers of his generation.”
—Bradford Morrow, O. Henry Prize–winning author of Diviner’s Tale

 

About the Author

Brian Evenson has written several works of fiction, including The Wavering Knife, for which he was awarded IHG Award for best story collection, and The Open Curtain, an Edgar Award finalist. His most recent novel, Last Days, won the ALA award for Best Horror Novel of 2009 and was on Time Out New York’s list of top books of 2009. Evenson is the director of Brown University’s Literary Arts Program and is the recipient of an O. Henry Prize and an NEA fellowship. He has also written Dead Space novels under the name B. K. Evenson.

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Customer Reviews

Not only that, but this cripple is very annoying.
Lupus
We picked this book for book club and I was the only one who didn't really like it so it might just be me.
GenXGirl
I am actually re-reading it for a second time...I rarely re-read books but this one got to me.
Mickey

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By M. Griffin on June 24, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Brian Evenson, one of my favorite short story writers, specializes in brief, enigmatic mysteries with a Kafkaesque flavor. Most of his collections have come out from publishers with more of a literary/experimental focus (Underland, Coffeehouse, Four Walls Eight Windows). It wouldn't seem unreasonable to categorize Evenson as a straight "literary" writer whose work contains speculative or "genre" elements only to accentuate the weird unease in a Kafka/Lynch sense, and not as raw meat for a genre readership. Such a conclusion about Evenson's work might seem to be argued-against by the release of Immobility, a post-apocalyptic tale which almost be called an "adventure" (if a quiet one), published by SF/Fantasy powerhouse Tor Books.

The story begins with the awakening from cryogenic stasis of Josef Horkai, a paralyzed amnesiac with unexplained resistance to the environmental toxins and radiation which keep the rest of the few surviving humans hiding underground. He's given a mission by Rasmus, seemingly in charge in this desolate, wrecked post-Kollaps aftermath, and a pair of "mules" named Qanik and Qatik, twins or perhaps clones, carry Horkai on the assignment. On the way, Horkai tries to get information from the mules, whose responses often seem nonsensical, yet sometimes contain information or even wisdom.

Horkai's muddled memory, which leaves him uncertain about such basic facts as whether he's even human, drives him even more strongly than any assigned mission. Immobility isn't just about Horkai's paralysis, but about his inability to choose any direction for himself because he lacks the necessary information to judge his own situation.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By SciFiChick VINE VOICE on April 12, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Josef Horkai wakes up to find he can't move and has no memory. The people who wake him up tell him little other than that he is paralyzed from the waist down, and they need him for a critical mission. The future world is bleak and ruined by war. Josef is only told he needs to recover something that was stolen. But as he soon discovers, there is more to his mission than meets the eye.

Evenson's desolate world is post-apocalyptic, with mysterious and bizarre characters. Immobility is a quick, yet thought-provoking read. I read it through in one sitting and couldn't put it down. The reader experiences everything along with the paraplegic Josef, from the horrific medical procedures to uncovering terrifying truths. This science fiction thriller is intensely dramatic, dark, and chilling. With an unpredictable twist that I didn't see coming, this story did not disappoint.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Harriet Klausner #1 HALL OF FAME on April 10, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Detective Josef Horkai was the best at dealing with lethal situations that other cops would fear involvement; his greatness was handling the worst, but executing with minimal collateral damage. However that was who he was before the -Kollaps.

Horkai awakens from a coma but suffers from amnesia although he recalls the Kollaps. He becomes aware that he is dying while people nearby assume he remains in a frozen animated state. His legs no longer work and his arms are as useless while he lost his teeth, hair and time nor any idea what is killing him or why he was kept on ice.

A stranger insists he is Horkai's friend and demands full thawing as he needs the former cop's investigative skills. His assignment is to retrieve a stolen cylinder before a catastrophic matching that of the Kollaps occurs. He distrusts his self-proclaimed buddy and the information is nebulous. While his body is a complete failure, if he decides he wants to live albeit frozen, he must accomplish the mission immediately as time has run out on Horkai even before he thawed.

This grim ultra-dark Kafka like thriller hooks the reader from the start as Horkai slowly awakens to his condition and the horror of what has passed while he was sleeping. The severe landscape establishes a hopeless backdrop as Horkai struggles to adapt to this horrific new world being an inexperienced paraplegic whose memories are fleeting at best. Fans will fully appreciate his descent into total darkness while pondering whether the protagonist suffers from an unending nightmare or is this really happening to him; to Horkai it does not matter whether it is a bad dream or not, as this is his realism.

Harriet Klausner
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Josh Mauthe on May 8, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
There's no author quite like Brian Evenson, whose books often feel as though Cormac McCarthy was writing Edgar Allan Poe stories of madness and horror. His prose is razor sharp and complex, but never difficult; while his storytelling is often done through implication or ellipsis, his mood and atmosphere are second to none, creating a dark, apocalyptic feel to even the simplest tale. And whether exploring the madness that often comes from religious focus (a frequent theme) or the poetry of violence and cruelty, Evenson does it while telling compelling, original stories that feel like no one else's work. Immobility may be Evenson's most accessible (and, it must be said, least unique) work, in terms of storytelling; it's the story of an amnesiac thawed out in a post-apocalyptic society and asked to retrieve an object, and what follows is a strange, unsettling blend of noir tale, Cormac McCarthy's The Road, and philosophical musings on humanity and our role on the planet. But while the story is simple to follow (at least, in terms of the plot), the book is not so easily categorized. As always, Evenson's prose is astonishing, immersing you in this broken, off-kilter world where questions are never answered as simply as you'd like, people are driven by their own agendas, and nature itself seems to have turned against us. It makes for an odd blend of science-fiction, post-apocalyptic horror, and postmodern fiction, but it's to Evenson's credit that it all works as well as it does, spinning a riveting tale that we quickly become invested in all the way to the inevitable yet surprising ending.Read more ›
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