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Super-Cannes: A Novel Paperback – October 4, 2002
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Four girls on a trip to Paris suddenly find themselves in a high-stakes game of Truth or Dare that spirals out of control. Learn More
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Library Journal
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
Upon their arrival, everything seems perfect, too perfect. Slowly, the veneer begins to peel away. Why were they put into the deceased Dr. Greenwood's house? Why won't anyone talk about the terrible tragedy? Where do all the husbands and business men go at night in their matching leather bowling jackets? And just what is Dr. Wilder Penrose, resident psychiatrist, doing with his "recreational therapy" program?
Driven by curiousity, and then fear for himself and his wife, Paul begins an investigation of his own, or is his just part of Penrose's alternative program?
An excellent view into the warping of modern, technological life. Despite being set in France, this tale plays more like a subtle American reality. A gentle and creeping psychological thriller, much like Ballard's last novel, Cocaine Nights.
When Paul Sinclair follows his wife Jane to Eden-Olympia, Paul is plunged into a mystery which no one seems eager to solve. Located near Cannes, Eden-Olympia offers multinational corporations a high-tech tax haven with temperate weather similar to Northern California's Silicon Valley. Busy executives live in crime and sickness-free enclaves leading extremely productive lives. Everything seems perfect except for the shocking mass murder recently committed by Dr. Greenwood, the pediatrician whom Jane is replacing. While Paul recovers from his injuries, he plunges head-first into discovering the motives and possible conspiracies behind Dr. Greenwood's murders.
Many literary critics consider Ballard to be a science-fiction writer. More accurately, I consider Ballard a futurist capable of offering a glimpse of the near-future which our society and culture may be headed for. In Ballard's Eden-Olympia there is "an inability to rest the mind, to find time for rest and relaxation". The only prescription offered is "small doses of insanity" taking the form of robberies, rapes (and other fetishes), drugs, and kiddie porn.
If Ballard is correct in his bleak vision, is it not unsurprising that the captains of industry - Welch, Koslowski, Skilling - all decided to play God (to one extent or another)? Going "a little mad" with adulterous affairs, grand larceny, and other felonious activities may have been the only way of staying sane in an unforgiving world demanding performance.
Eden-Olympia is an ultra modern business park and insular community nestled uncomfortably among the olive groves and marinas of the Cote d'Azure and where recently a respected young doctor embarked on a vicious killing spree. New residents soon find they have little time for anything but work and begin showing mental and physical problems that threaten to overtake the would be corporate paradise. In classic ballardian form, rogue psychiatrist Wilder Penrose steps in and implements a regime in which workaholic CEO's, presidents and junior vp's are encouraged to sublimate their fantasies of criminality, sexuality and violence by taking part in "therapy sessions" of a most uncoventional type. While investigating the bizarre murder-suicide of the former doctor, protagonist Paul Sinclair soon finds himself drawn deeply into this ferment of bright modernity and dark venality.
While not on a level with some of his other work; (and his best work is awesome) and although his characters are rather remote, (as usual) Super-Cannes is still an invigorating book. Ballard's mythologizing of crashed airplanes...abandoned runways...car parks... swimming pools...and other totems of our time forms one of the more exotic contributions to literature, yet it works. A strangely lit poetry suffuses his novels, short stories and essays; and one can always count on him for an an unexpected vista. His relentless probing of the social/technological interface has yielded some unsettling prophecies. Super-Cannes is basically a parable about the future; and as Ballard views it, the future is now.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Ballard is one of those writers I've always meant to check out, but somehow hadn't gotten around to until picking this up. Read morePublished 19 months ago by A. Ross
Many reviewers sneer at this book because they think the author repeated himself and said it better in his previous novels. Read morePublished on June 2, 2014 by Wistful Angst
For a while now I've been trying to get around to reading JG Ballard novel (they don't stock them on any shelves for some reason, despite having had them turned int films). Read morePublished on March 2, 2014 by Dwayne Dibbly
In one of his last published books, J. G. Ballard, in SUPER-CANNES, probes at several of the themes that he is most noted for - namely the repression and subsequent release of... Read morePublished on March 5, 2012 by Bryan Byrd
Remarkably visionary, like all Ballard, but sometimes pedantic and plodding. There are also some timeline and character development weaknesses. Read morePublished on June 27, 2009 by R. O'Brien
I'm writing this review because I think it's an absolute tragedy that this book has only received an average of 3 stars.
I think this book is a masterpiece. Read more
The book was pretty good, but I wanted to leave a note about a small problem I had with the Kindle version. If you go to location #956, you'll see there's some text missing. Read morePublished on February 21, 2008 by Edith Frost
I got this book after reading the glowing reviews on the back of the jacket, such as "A magical hybrid that belongs to no known genre, a masterpiece of the surrealist imagination. Read morePublished on January 5, 2008 by Pyxey