This review is more or less a random collage of fragments that appealed to me: fragments of reviews found on Goodreads, of the book’s preface by William Burroughs, of Hari Kunzru’s introduction, of a 2019 text by Rob Doyle in The Irish Times, and quotes from Ballard & the book itself.

Part of this review also went through an additional process, as I asked an AI to attempt to integrate & summarize some of these fragments into a coherent whole – but I don’t think it did very well on that front.

My editing is fairly minimal, not zero. I also wrote a few sentences or parts of sentence of my own.

The Atrocity Exhibition

In 1964 J.G. Ballard’s wife died suddenly of pneumonia, leaving him to bring up their three children alone. In 2007, when he was already terminally ill, Hari Kunzru interviewed him. “I was terribly wounded by my wife’s death. Leaving me with these very young children, I felt that a crime had been committed by nature against this young woman – and her children – and I was searching desperately for an explanation . . .  To some extent The Atrocity Exhibition is an attempt to explain all the terrible violence that I saw around me in the early sixties. It wasn’t just the Kennedy assassination . . . I think I was trying to look for a kind of new logic that would explain all these events.”

The Atrocity Exhibition is a challenging read that takes the reader on a journey into the abstract and hallucinatory realm of Ballard’s writing. It crosses over from his more familiar territory of cold and sterile science fiction and delves into a world reminiscent of Burroughs. The central narrative is elusive, making the reading process difficult, but for some it might be worthwhile if you are up for the challenge.

The book can be seen as a long poem. However, Ballard works against himself when his imitations & appropriations of the mind-numbing jargon of medical and sociological studies become mind-numbing themselves. Still, there are interesting phrases & scenes to be found throughout. The author notes that accompany later editions are at times more interesting than the text itself.

The Ballard book that should grace every home is not Crash, nor even The Atrocity Exhibition, but Extreme Metaphors: Interviews with JG Ballard 1967-2008. In those interviews, ideas teem with intoxicating abundance, whereas the novels that serve as vehicles for those ideas tend to be clunky and long-winded, their plots and cut-out characters the paraphernalia of an entertainment form unsuited to the agitated 21st-century brain that Ballard anticipated. He was such a superb commentator on his own fiction, one wonders whether the fiction was needed at all. Might he not have simply pretended it existed, then given us books of pure ideation?

The Atrocity Exhibition is a novel about sex, death, media manipulation, car crashes, and celebrity foreshadowing various themes found in his later works. Fame and the treatment of the famous by the media are explored, as well as linking car crashes and the like with erotic impact, a theme he explores more famously in Crash. I did appreciate his point that media sanitation of violence and sex means that the public can easily dismiss or ignore these ‘atrocities’, but his vehicle for explaining this is abstract, hindering easy engagement by the reader. Except in the final chapters, Ballard’s self-proclaimed “free association” method of writing quickly becomes tedious and monotonous.

This book proves once again – as if I needed any further proof this far into our tiresomely exhibitionist century – that other people’s sexual fetishes make for dull reading, even when they are gussied up with artful prose and oodles of past celebrity names.

But here we come to the crux of this review. While Ballard’s execution is nearly perfect, the actual work he has executed is trite, irritating, often pedantic, shallow and lacks either the earnestness or irony that might salvage it, even if Ballard tries to project an image of being detached from regular society too: “The Atrocity Exhibition‘s original dedication should have been ‘To the Insane’. I owe them everything.”

Some elements are weirdly prescient, whether in a societal sense (the “banalization of celebrity… an instant, ready-to-mix fame as nutritious as packet soup”, and the Vietnam war becoming a rich vein for cinema), or in his own life and works: this was written in ’67 and in ’70 Ballard did actually put on an exhibition of crashed cars in London, and in ’73 he published Crash. The real exhibition provoked strong, violent and sometimes strange reactions in ways that the same vehicles on the street outside would not. Most bizarrely, a model hired to interview visitors whilst she was naked, said, after seeing the exhibits, that she would only do it topless.

On Crash Ballard has written the following: “Throughout Crash I have used the car not only as a sexual image, but as a total metaphor for man’s life in today’s society. As such the novel has a political role quite apart from its sexual content, but I would still like to think that Crash is the first pornographic novel based on technology. In a sense, pornography is the most political form of fiction, dealing with how we use and exploit each other in the most urgent and ruthless way. Needless to say, the ultimate role of Crash is cautionary, a warning against that brutal, erotic and overlit realm that beckons more and more persuasively to us from the margins of the technological landscape.” It’s easy to see the same applies to this earlier novel. It’s also of note that Ballard would later regret dubbing Crash a cautionary tale, asserting that it is in fact “a psychopathic hymn. But it is a psychopathic hymn which has a point”. The question again is: was Ballard enough of an earnest psychopath himself? Would psychopaths even want to communicate something of a point to the world?

Either way, time has been an enemy of the book’s controversial nature. Who still cares about what Ballard wrote in the notes: that “Pornography is a powerful catalyst for social change, and its periods of greatest availability have frequently coincided with times of greatest economic and scientific advance”?

He sat on the edge of the water-filled basin, staring into the lucid depths of that exposed placenta.

The profound anality of the Presidential contender may be expected to dominate the United States in the coming years.

The fine sand poured into the hollows, a transfer of geometry as delicate as a series of whispers.

The author’s traumatic loss of his wife and the subsequent utterly rearranged life and lifestyle explains at least some of this early-onset logorrhea. Variations on a theme. Kaleidoscopic meditation on the sexuality and non-sexuality of the body, the barrage of cultural imagery, yada yada… you know the drill.

The attempt at abstraction isn’t always engaging, and the prose style – in terms of descriptive ability – is repetitive… every landscape looking like a Max Ernst, a surgical tool, or a rib cage. The characters operate in it as repeat motifs, cropping up in different scenarios and locations as different people.

There are stories here, for those who want to take the time to find them, but the book is held together more by its themes than by its narratives.

This is Ballard’s most outlandish book, a bizarre and eccentrically profane work whose first edition was ordered pulped by publisher Nelson Doubleday when he came across such chapters as “Why I Want to Fuck Ronald Reagan” and “The Assassination of John Fitzgerald Kennedy Considered as a Downhill Motor Race.” I had been looking forward to reading this for a while. Now that I have finally finished it–it is not that long, but it is muddled in its own weird way–I have to say it was something of a disappointment.

The action takes place in a typical Ballardian setting: a hostile future world, barren and desolate, technologically advanced but emotionally primitive. The “narrative” is frequently interrupted by strange lists of scientific factoids and artistic observations, and descriptions of bizarre experiments concerning insanity, Vietnam, and car crashes, among other things. Media heroes from the 1960s appear regularly on billboards, or in the sky, or in other ways, emphasizing the rapid growth of the media’s impact on the consciousnesses of average people, and the totemic nature of those earlier media stars in comparison with today’s less impressive luminaries. Ballard intermingles their images with obsessive fantasies. In his mind World War III represents the final self-destruction and imbalance of an asymmetric world. The human organism is an atrocity exhibition at which he is an unwilling spectator.

Behind their display frames the images of Nader and JFK, napalm and air crash victims revealed the considerable ingenuity of the film makers. Yet the results were disappointing; whatever Talbot had hoped for had clearly not materialized. The violence was little more than a sophisticated entertainment.

Ballard obsesses over the ways violent mass media spectacles – Vietnam, the assassination of JKF, the suicide of Marilyn Monroe – send shockwaves across the global unconscious. But for me, Bormgans, the real question is if such an unconsciousness actually exists.

The Atrocity Exhibtion looks on our culture’s real sacred treasures – the imaginary bodies of famous people – and responds with all the violence and lust and revulsion that the healthy well-adjusted citizen suppresses. Decency is what separates rational economic actors, dutifully maximizing their personal benefit, from the racaille, from scum. It is the source of order. Ballard’s fictional refusal of it might have been a threat once, but I think it was and is hardly effective given the current state of the world. As such, a miserable, failed attempt.

Love + Napalm Export USA

As an experimental review of an experimental novel on a not-for-profit blog, I believe possible copyright issues fall under fair use. Comment below if you think your rights are violated, and I will take down the relevant sections.

Consult the author index for all my other reviews, or my favorite lists.

Click here for an index of my non-fiction or art book reviews, and here for an index of my longer fiction reviews of a more scholarly & philosophical nature.

33 responses to “THE ATROCITY EXHIBITION – J.G. Ballard (1970)

  1. I tried the AI image and AI paragraph blocks yesterday on a blog setup by someone else, where I am a contributor. It was definitely a test and it failed miserably. What scared me though is that despite how vacuous it was, it sounded like a lot of younger bloggers today, or those pop culture “news” sites that report on what Heartthrob X wore yesterday or why Bra Y just won’t do.

    Kids are going to start using it and never learn what good writing actually is and that scares the living daylights out of me.
    (and so does Ballard, but since he’s dead I can’t toss him over a literary cliff like I can kids of today)

    Liked by 2 people

    • I have to say I’m not an AI non-believer. I think the one I used simply wasn’t (yet) up to the taks I set, but I’ve seen some really really impressive images generated by AI, and also some fairly good conversations & texts. For a large part, the success hinges on the prompts one gives the technology, the wiliness to finetune the settings, and the the patience to let the AI work on the output again and again.

      The effect on kids’ writing will depend for a large extent on how teachers will manage to come up with assignments that will be impossible for AIs, something that’s even not that hard when teaching highschoolers imo. Also, in most classrooms it should be easy to monitor & limit access to AI, so for in-class writing there shouldn’t be a problem at all.

      I do want to read more of Ballard – not much, but not zero – but I’m unsure what. I guess I’ll let it depend on what I come across in a physical shop. Do you feel he’s a bad writer? I just thought you didn’t really sync with his depressing subject matter when you read the short stories.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Alright, but which of these opinions are yours? What did you think of it?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thanks for the warning. I’m assuming the content is well represented in the beginning of the book – it doesn’t seem like the kind of book that will reward the reader with fond memories and a desire to re-read once a year.

    Some of those books are necessary – maybe – but I’m glad I’m not required to read them. I already have an imagination corroded and studded with horrible images – I’m in my 70s and have lived in this world – I don’t want to acquire more by choice.

    I don’t think books like this should necessarily be banned, though I’m tired of certain categories, but that they should sink of their own weight because every reader that innocently starts reading them reaches a Yuck! point. Sadly, there are those among us who are attracted to them.

    On this one, I’m not going to read to find out on my own.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I really respect Ballard’s attempt here. I guess it’s better to approach this title more as a work of conceptual art than a novel. One could also look at it as sketches for actual images, and as such it truly is not dissimilar to walking around an art gallery. As such, I think this is both a 5 star as a 1 star book.

      I would hat stuff like this banned, so I’m a bit puzzled by your phrasing using the world “necessarily” – it seems somehow like you wouldn’t oppose the idea?

      I don’t think there will be lots of innocent readers that will start this with the wrong expectations nowadays, but in a way that would be better, more in tune with the book’s mission, confronting those that need – those still innocent – it with its content.

      I’m not sure I’m sad there are people attracted to it, as I count myself among those people. I’ve always been interested in these matters from a theoretical point of view. As you say: we live in this world, and death, violence, sexuality and excess are part of that world. I guess curiosity on this front is a coping mechanism, just like trying to look away. Not that both mechanisms are just sides of the same coin. I’m sure it’s more complex than that, even though a big part of the difference might just be the elusive ‘taste’.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I don’t approve of book banning, because it just makes the book more attractive. That’s all. Let the reviews tell people who doesn’t like it, and then readers can make their own choice whether to pay for it or borrow it. Or skip it.

        But there are plenty of books to read, and I don’t like the ones that make my head hurt or get filled with unsettling images – I’m likely not to finish those if I start them at all. Personal choice. I won’t read Lolita. I forced myself to read Catcher in the Rye, and hated it. I need SOMEONE in a story to identify with.

        I have limited time on Earth for the good stuff; I don’t want to spend any of it on icky stuff. I apply the same standards to my writing – and came very close to the edge.

        Liked by 1 person

        • I guess icky stuff in unavoidable if you want writing to be a realistic reflection of the world in some way or the other.


          • I pushed some of my villain’s behavior as close as I could, and then over the line as far as I dared. Reviewers have, maddeningly, not given me feedback on the plot line – and have not complained about the results.

            It will happen some time. Meanwhile, I’m glad they liked what was non-negotiable about the second book in my mainstream trilogy. I was prepared to be the only one who liked it.


  4. Very interesting post and most stimulating conversation. I do like listening to you talk about the challenges and the experience of reading modern authors and the themes they choose.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks!! In a way, reading this indeed was more about the experience & challenge than about pure enjoyment, but I guess it’s never really only the one or the other, at least, not the kind of books I enjoy.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. “Might he not have simply pretended it existed, then given us books of pure ideation?” This suggests he was a better theoretician than practitioner, so I’d be happy to make his nonfiction a priority over his fiction – that is, if I ever finally get round to reading anything by him.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I suppose the question that surfaces for me is: what’s your opinion and what isn’t?

    It’s a shame that Ballard decided to publish these “condensed novels” in one work. About half of them had already appeared separately. And like much of Ballard’s fiction, or at least his high point of ‘experimentation’ in the mid to late 60s, one is rewarded by taking them slowly, one at time. Perhaps that’s the case for most short story collection in any case, but I would hazard to say it is even more the case for The Atrocity Exhibition.

    I can’t help but agree with this:

    “In those interviews, ideas teem with intoxicating abundance, whereas the novels that serve as vehicles for those ideas tend to be clunky and long-winded, their plots and cut-out characters the paraphernalia of an entertainment form unsuited to the agitated 21st-century brain that Ballard anticipated.”

    Is this you?

    Also, the following reminds my of Guy Debord’s comments upon the surrealists: “Ballard’s self-proclaimed “free association” method of writing quickly becomes tedious and monotonous”.

    This is certainly a wider problem with surrealistic ‘pure psychic automatism’. It’s a great spice, but when it’s laid on thick it rapidly becomes tedious.

    Here are Debord’s apposite remarks:

    “The error that is at the root of surrealism is the idea of the infinite richness of the unconscious imagination. The cause of surrealism’s ideological failure was its belief that the unconscious was the finally discovered ultimate force of life; and the fact that the surrealists revised the history of ideas in accordance with that simplistic perspective and never went any further. We now know that the unconscious imagination is poor, that automatic writing is monotonous, and that the whole ostentatious genre of would-be “strange” and “shocking” surrealistic creations has ceased to be very surprising. […] The discovery of the role of the unconscious was indeed a surprise and an innovation; but it was not a law of future surprises and innovations. Freud had also ended up discovering this when he wrote: “Whatever is conscious wears out. What is unconscious remains unalterable. But once it is freed, it too falls to ruin.”
    (from here:

    Ultimately, I think it is hard to judge The Atrocity Exhibition in terms of what makes a good novel. It isn’t a good novel, and in part, that’s the point. Ballard and others were butting up against not only the limits of the story & novel form, but also the whole point of writing such fictions given the apparent decent into violence that they witnessed, and sometimes were caught up in. In Ballard’s case, he came back from the extremes of his experiments (for instance, the very loose trilogy Crash, High Rise and Concrete Island, that can be considered more ‘disciplined’ and novelistic approaches to some of the material in The Atrocity Exhibition).

    I would pose that there are only two ways to go after the heights (or depths, if you prefer) of The Atrocity Exhibition. Either give up writing (possibly in favour of another “practice”) or turn back to the task of writing something that will be a more commercially successful work than The Atrocity Exhibition. It is interesting to note that Ballard was not the only one who faced this dilemma at this point (and presumably for similar reasons).

    My favourite example is the relatively “straight” Robert Silverberg, who rapidly embraced New Wave themes, only to find himself exhausted by the mid-70s along with declining sales. This was enough for him to give up writing for the rest of the decade.

    Liked by 1 person

    • (will answer tomorrow)

      Liked by 1 person

    • I agree I would have liked this a lot more if I hadn’t read it cover to cover, but did as Ballard instructed. I guess I was too conditioned to follow his advice. Both quotes you lift from the review aren’t mine originally – I don’t think there’s a full paragraph that is fully of my own hand. But as I agree to all the opinions in the review, you could say they are all mine – even if most of them originated from me, at least not in these specific words.

      That Debord quote is very interesting, I have to agree there too. It might also help explain why I never was that interested in surrealist art forms to begin with – not in writing, not in painting. In a way, it seems too easy as well.

      The thought that this is a failed attempt I expressed in the review was mine, and basically for the same reason you list at the end of your comment: I think successful resistance probably needs to be commercially successful too, or it will hardly have an impact. It might be successful in the long run if it influences other artistic output, but I don’t think that was the case with The Atrocity Exhibition. In my review of Powers’ Bewilderment and elsewhere I’ve already written on my skepticism about literature as an originator of real world change, so even with commercial success I think it would be nigh impossible to write a warning with impact, nor a “psychopathic hymn with a point” – that is, if Ballard intended that point to really pierce something.

      Liked by 1 person

      • To be fair to the surrealists, some of the foundational examples of “pure psychic automatism” are great. For instance, I heartily recommend André Breton and Philippe Soupault’s ‘Les Champs magnétiques’ (the magnetic fields). But yes, *pure* psychic automatism becomes tiresome fairly quickly. Another cool example of surrealist writing that uses automatism, but not in its pure state, is ‘L’Immaculée Conception’ by Breton and Paul Éluard. I’m not sure to what extent this influenced Ballard (he seems to be more influenced by the paintings than the poets), but it would interesting to compare the latter work with some of Ballard’s more psychoanalytic pieces (including The Atrocity Exhibition).

        With regards to this comment of yours: “I think successful resistance probably needs to be commercially successful too, or it will hardly have an impact.” What type of impact would you say was a measure of success, given the aim of the experiment was largely negative (i.e., an anti-novel let’s say)? For instance, Lautréamont’s ‘Les Chants de Maldoror’ was not a commercially successful novel at all and was largely forgotten for the first 50 years after its first publication. But now, it would be hard to reckon with the course of French and even world literature in the century after its publication without coming to grips with its influence.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Thanks for the recommendations, but if I’m honest chances are slim that I’ll ever get to them, my French isn’t up to the level to be effortless enough to enjoy it, and it seems besides the point of reading writing like that in translation.

          Good question about what would be a success – that final part of the paragraph was indeed my own btw. Ballard’s own initial intention might have been a warning too, like Crash was, and in that sense it seems to have failed, as it fell on deaf ears in society at large. There was also talk of the novel being a threat – I’m not sure anymore who that sentiment belonged to – and in that respect it seems to have failed as well. But you are right, novels can have in influence on other novels, and in that sense succeed artistically, but not socially. I was talking about a social failure here.

          It’s not an easy topic, since it’s so hard to prove (either way) but the older I get the more I’m inclined to be very skeptical about the romantic idea of works of (high brow) art being able to influence society (outside of art) in any meaningful way, i.e. structurally/materially. There might be exceptions, but I think they’re few, especially when compared to the self-proclaimed importance on that matter of many writers.


  7. Interesting, though flawed – your experimental review, haven’t read that Ballard and don’t intend to, from what you and AI write it seems like a waste of time 😉

    I guess when it comes to your review I was rather underwhelmed by the vocabulary and cadence – you don’t write this way even if the content of these sentences reflects your thoughts. But it’s interesting, and a great thought experiment, and maybe a beginning of a discussion about the merits of AI and whether it will learn enough to have its own voice one day 🙂 The one thing that continues to concern me is that AI still does not know enough to know what it doesn’t know. It does not question itself. I’m looking forward to that!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, that’s a very interesting remark, hadn’t thought about the review in terms of my own personal writing style, but indeed, it makes sense. It’s kinda weird typing this, realizing recurring readers of this blog actually have a mental image of what constitutes as my style, cadence, etc. I wonder how such an image would fit with the actual real-life person I am – even though the online persona here undoubtely is me.

      Coincidentally, I was thinking the other day that that style has evolved a lot over the years – it’s a bit confronting when I sometimes reread early reviews.

      I have to say the role of the AI in this Ballard review was really limited. What it basically did was take the quotes and preserve 98% or so of them, and just put them in another order. It also didn’t use all the quotes I fed it, so I ended up incorporating those as well, and added/inserted yet a few others later.

      I don’t think AI “knows”. It just seems to mimic speech patterns and is great at linking semantic issues in the patterns of its source material and the questions it gets asked. To know what you know or don’t know, you need self-awareness, and I think we are pretty far removed from self-aware AI – closer to centuries than decades is my hunch. To someday reach self-aware AI, it should be truly embodied to begin with. Biological evolution has had billions of years, and the species that are self-aware atm aren’t plenty. Granted, technological evolution goes way faster, but I don’t think it can be achieved in the short run.

      One final remark, not sure if it comes across clearly in the review, but the reason I choose this particular form is that The Atrocity Exhibition also consists of fragments, of which some were appropriated too. I was both tired & lazy, and thought just using quotes was an apt way to go for this particular book, but in the end I ended up spending more time on it than I would on a regular review, polishing, editing, etc. So it’ll be a one time thing for sure.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I agree with your assessment about AI, though I think the moment when it reaches self-awareness is much nearer because its evolution has begun from a much higher level of complexity.

        I think it was a really cool idea to employ AI to mix up your review – it gives us a good topic for conversation, too!

        As for your personal style and how it would be different from the real-life personality you usually exhibit… It’s an interesting topic, certainly, and I can confess here that I have this mental image of you being a very methodical, unruffled and generally considerate person who is slow to anger and to other strong emotions, but very stubborn, too! 🤣 Tell me how much off the mark I am! 🤣🤣

        Liked by 1 person

        • I think you also need agency for self-awareness, and it doesn’t look like AI is being programmed for that atm. We’ll see. I could obviously be very wrong.

          I’m not sure if I’m very methodical in my personal/professional life, but all the other stuff is pretty spot on. Strong emotions have become less by getting older, but I have to say I can still be very enthusiastic/emotional about some piece of art/music/literature/food/etc. or non-fiction, reality, etc. too.

          Liked by 1 person

  8. Thanks for the interesting review. I have slowly been working through Ballard’s opus over the last few years. I agree that Extreme Metaphors is amazing—there is something special seeing the arc of his life through interviews (I can also recommend listening to his complete short stories as an audiobook). I didn’t realize how much of his life was really inspiration for his books. Although I have read through most of his works, I skipped over The Atrocity Exhibtion thinking it might be too chaotic for me, but your review has somewhat reassured me that I should give it a go.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. That’s a difficult question. I have mixed feelings about Ballard. I keep going back to him, but I am not always sure why. It’s something about his writing style and mood that he creates that I like, but I don’t always find the stories very satisfying overall—but they still somehow keep luring me back for more. I liked the Drowned World—set in a flooded London. Crash is very good—perhaps his best. High-Rise is interesting too. I haven’t read anything past the early 1980s yet. My next book is Empire of the Sun, which is meant to be his best along with Crash.

    Personally I would read Extreme Metaphors first, as it gives so much context for where his ideas are coming from.

    My favourite works by him are stories set in the Mohave resort town of Vermillion Sands. Probably my favorite of these is “The Cloud-Sculptors of Coral D”. His collected short stories were a bit hit and miss, but the good ones were really very effective.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks! Now that you mention them, I might get the Vermillion Sands collection. I liked an early collection of his (I reviewed that too) and that included 2 Vermillion Sands stories. I don’t think I’m up for the full collection of short stories, so Vermillion Sands might be the way to go. High-Rise is on my radar too, just as Extreme Metaphors. Like you, I’m somehow drawn to Ballard without fully being able to explain way. I’ve read three of his titles now, and none of those were a fully satisfying reading experience (my hunch is even that he never wrote a book that’ll fully satisfy me), and yet I’m curious for more.


      • I find I am very much in agreement with your reviews so I wouldn’t be surprised if we had somewhat similar feelings about Ballard.

        I think I am also just fascinated by him as a person and writer. The sudden death of his wife while on holiday in Spain has just got to be one of the worse things that could happen. Basically they do a funeral there and then drive back home with the kids to London. His daughter said they never spoke of it again. The trauma was just too great. He was suddenly a single parent, deeply grieving the senseless loss of his wife, while having to keep it together to look after the kids and somehow earn enough money by writing, all the while taking them to school, making lunches etc. I think he says in one of the interviews that he was basically writing at the kitchen table between drop-off and pick-up in the afternoon. Terrified that the kids are going to be hit by a car on the way home. The death of his wife, plus the sudden destruction of his childhood in Shanghai and placement in a Japanese interment camp, plus the feelings of alienation to England when he returned as a outsider child explains a lot of the alienation/darkness of his writing to my mind.

        The Vermillion Sands stories are great. I don’t think that “The Cloud-Sculptors of Coral D” was in the original short story collection called Vermillion Sands though (it seems to have been published in an earlier collection) but there is probably a more modern collection that contains them all. I would never have had the strength to read the complete short stories if it wasn’t for Audible. I just listened to them over a few weeks as I was out walking.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Becoming a single parent of 3 young children must be absolutely brutal, and as you say, that wasn’t his only mental ordeal. I’ll have to read more of him knowing all that, as it wasn’t to the front of my mind when I read The Atrocity Exhibition. I found a copy of Vermillion Sands with Cloud-Sculptors included. I’m also thinking of ordering High-Rise.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s