Here it is … our first publication, award-winning author C. J. Hopkins’ debut novel, ZONE 23, published under our venerable imprint, Snoggsworthy, Swaine & Cormorant Paperbacks. It’s available online from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Waterstones, Dussmann, this Dutch operation, this one in Norway, Angus & Robertson Bookworld in Australia, and various other similar sites, or you can physically order it at your local bookstore (assuming you still have a local bookstore).
ZONE 23 … a darkly comic dystopian satire about being human, all-too-human, featuring two of the most endearing and emotionally messed-up Anti-Social anti-heroes that have ever rebelled against the forces of Normality. Set in the post-catastrophic future, in a peaceful, prosperous, corporate-controlled society where everything has been privatized and commodified, all dissent and non-conformity has been pathologized, and the human race is being genetically corrected in order to establish everlasting peace on Earth, ZONE 23 is a hilarious, heartbreaking affirmation of the anarchic human spirit, and a defiant departure from the norms of both the genre sci-fi and literary novel.
— Snoggsworthy, Swaine & Cormorant Paperbacks
Here’s a taste of what the critics have said about C. J. Hopkins’ previous work …
“A brilliant (and hilarious) critique of the emptiness of American life and the meaninglessness of the popular culture that attempts to fill the void.” — Toronto Globe & Mail
“A blistering revelation … Hopkins’ work owes a huge debt to the absurdists and so manages to blast beyond the merely political or allegorical to the existential.” — Time Out New York
“Sharp, brilliant, intense, fast-moving, made for the moment we live in.” — The Scotsman
“America’s relationship with consumerism and the media is unerringly skewered.” — The Times
“Hilariously at odds with the mainstream.” — The Herald
“A hyperreal, tragicomedy, laced with wicked wit and spiked with horror.” — Metro
A gripping satire, which spills into sinister weirdness.” — Die Tageszeitung, Berlin
There’s much more on his official website, so we’re not going to duplicate it all here. We’re just trying to get you to purchase this book so that maybe Hopkins will stop calling our offices twelve to fourteen times a day demanding to know how the marketing is going.
Oh, and speaking of marketing, we’re adopting a somewhat unorthodox strategy to try to sell this novel, which is approximately 500 pages long (i.e., twice as long as a debut novel is supposed to be according to “the rules”), and which doesn’t quite conform to the genre formulas of either a sci-fi or a literary novel … or any other formula or rules for that matter. In addition to which, if you’re at all familiar with Hopkins’ plays or his political satire, you can probably imagine the challenge we’re facing in releasing this book into a literary market almost totally dominated by a small cartel of extremely powerful corporate publishers. These enormous corporations (and the people who serve them) are who mostly decide which books we get to read, which is why so much of contemporary literature is so formulaic and instantly forgettable. It’s not a question of censorship or anything; it’s just that the corporate literary establishment (and the MFA factory system that feeds it) tends to produce, publish, and promote books which align with the views of its members, many of whom come from extremely wealthy families, which is how they can afford those expensive MFA programs, and their unpaid internships at prestigious publishers, and … all right, we think you get the picture.
The point is, you won’t be seeing any ads for ZONE 23 in The New York Times, or encountering any fancy in-store displays, or strategically positioned stacks of the book on the tables of whatever corporate behemoth has underpriced your local bookstore to death. Instead, we’ll be relying on you to help spread the word to other readers, and to post reviews on Amazon.com, and your blog, and Twitter, and Facebook, and so on, and to ask your local bookstore to stock it, and to otherwise generate a groundswell of interest, which is the only way we’re going to be able to compete with those aforementioned corporate publishers.
So please help us out with all that if you can. If you’d like to review or write about the book, or otherwise promote it, or carry it in your bookstore, or attempt to interview C. J. Hopkins, we’d love to hear from you … just send us a message with our handy impersonal contact form.