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Futureproof: A Novel Paperback – January 27, 2009
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The latest book club pick from Oprah
"The Underground Railroad" by Colson Whitehead is a magnificent tour de force chronicling a young slave's adventures as she makes a desperate bid for freedom in the antebellum South. See more
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
“Be the first on your block to glimpse the future of American fiction - if not the future of America. Lock the doors, load your guns, and let N. Frank Daniels take you straight to a hell you can believe in.” (Jerry Stahl, author of Permanent Midnight)
“He seems to share punkish DNA with the likes of Irvine Welsh, Paul Westerberg and Bret Easton Ellis” (Jay McInerney)
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Top Customer Reviews
I thought it was interesting how you don't learn the main character's name until page eight - thus increasing the feeling that this could be anyone's life. There are some interesting pieces to this read. However it's difficult to know who to recommend it to, it's dated by the O.J. references so it should be someone over thirty but many of the over 30 crowd will loose patience with Luke. Overall I have to agree with a previous review - loose a couple of chapters and it will be a better book but it's not a bad read as is.
But, to be honest, I wasn't expecting to like it. Wayne told me about how it's about a young guy's journey into the world of drugs, and the other reviews talk about the great style of the book, and frankly, it didn't sound like it would be my thing. Having followed the straight-and-narrow, role-playing-game-playing, computer-nerd path through adolescence and early adulthood, I just didn't think I would relate. And this "style" didn't sound inviting either. But Wayne liked it, and that was good enough to get me started.
As it turned out I did relate slightly. From Luke's experience of the Rocky Horror Picture Show and onward, I recognized a lot of cultural references that were contemporary with my own adolescence - even though I was on the other side of the world and on a nerd-trajectory to adulthood.
As it really turned out, however, none of this mattered. I didn't need to relate to anything in Luke's life. With his supremely economical, first person, mini-scene chapters Daniels lead me deeper into the life of Luke, as he seems to slide down into ever more serious drug addiction, than I could possibly have imagined.
Daniels sketches his story as if in a series of short, detailed stills in the margins of a notebook, then flicks it past us like a flicker-book. The effect left me at first wishing for more continuity between the chapters - more ongoing-story. But I was quickly hooked and I soon found that myself really needing to get to the next bite-sized chapter.Read more ›
As for Futureproof itself, Frank Daniels has written a gritty but eloquently-told page-turner about an intelligent but perilously flawed young man growing up in 1990's Atlanta, and his descent into an out of control life fueled by hard-core drug use, promiscuity, and sensory inputs of the most destructive kind, including stints of self-mutilation.
As Daniels' main character, called Luke, though basically a stand-in for the author, tumbles from a respectable suburban public school (the chapter where he is involved in a play is deceptively hilarious) into a world in which the primary pursuit is the next high, readers are alternately dragged, coaxed and invited along through the back alleys of crack dealers and into parties where drugs are mixed, shared and swapped, and the threat of overdose, visited more than once in Futureproof, lies ever-present. As we read of Luke's tales of thefts undertaken to fund his habits, of odd jobs, including a stint as an extra on a broadcast miniseries, the sense of tragedy doubles and re-doubles as this obviously intelligent and perceptive youth sinks ever lower into a life so increasingly dreary that were it not based on stark reality, it might almost seem melodramatic. When in a remarkably depressing turn of events Luke finally reaches what seems life's absolute nadir---his drug-addicted infant son is taken into state custody---his circumstances seem to find a way even then for things to slide still painfully farther.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Stayed up late several nights to finish this book after you asked me to give my honest opinion! Don't know if I ever got to tell how much I loved it. Read morePublished 7 months ago by rastakid
Dark, disturbing, but engaging till about half way in. After that, I found myself losing patience with the main character, Luke. Read morePublished on December 29, 2011 by Jennifer L. Myers
This was an excellent book written by an obviously talented guy. Not one dull moment throughout the entire read. Read morePublished on March 1, 2010 by D. Power
Excellent debut--this book had me hooked from the first page. The author says it is loosely based on his life and documents a coming of age tale that is raw, honest, brutal,... Read morePublished on March 10, 2009 by NB
I have done nothing for the past two days but read this book. I even read it at work. It was too good to put down. Read morePublished on February 5, 2009 by Jane Green
Any book that opens by throwing you head-first into the audience of a midnight viewing of "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" is alright by me and probably something that you would be... Read morePublished on January 25, 2008 by Steffan Piper
It's not easy for me to become - and then stay - interested in a book. I don't know how many I've picked up in the past few months, only to set them down and forget about... Read morePublished on August 15, 2007 by Kristen Tsetsi
Novel changed my life
One of the most inspiring, beautiful novels written
Daniel's has crafted a modern day "Go Ask Alice" with his brave look into the slow decay of a modern youth falling into the world of excessive drug use and the meaninglessness that... Read morePublished on June 15, 2007 by Arsonor