By J. G. Ballard
"Harsh and inventive! High Rise is an severe and shiny bestiary, which lingers unsettlingly within the mind." ―Martin Amis, New Statesman
whilst a category battle erupts within a sumptuous house block, glossy elevators turn into violent battlegrounds and cocktail events degenerate into marauding assaults on “enemy” flooring. during this visionary story, human society slips into violent opposite as once-peaceful citizens, pushed by means of primal urges, re-create a global governed via the legislation of the jungle.
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Extra resources for High-Rise: A Novel
Come on, up the following . . . ’ Barely capable of include his glee on the spectacle of this bald-headed crone fawning with exaggerated pathos over the puppy, Wilder leaned opposed to the desk, giggling soundlessly to himself. At any second she will be in for a surprise, his heavy boot on her neck. at the back of the barricade a moment determine seemed. a tender lady of approximately thirty, most likely the daughter, peered over the outdated woman’s shoulder. Her suede jacket used to be unbuttoned to bare a couple of dirty breasts, yet her hair was once elaborately wound right into a mass of rollers, as though she have been getting ready elements of her physique for a few formal gala to which the remainder of herself had now not been invited. the 2 ladies stared down on the puppy, their faces expressionless. because the daughter waited with the carving-knife the mum edged down the stairs. Muttering reassuringly, she patted the poodle at the head and bent all the way down to take the lead. As her robust palms closed round the twine Wilder leapt ahead. The puppy sprang to existence, hurled itself up the stairs and sank its enamel into the previous woman’s arm. With magnificent agility, she darted in the course of the hole within the barricade, the puppy clamped to her arm. slightly in time, Wilder her, kicking again the writing-desk prior to the daughter might lock it into position. He dragged the poodle from the outdated woman’s bloodied arm, seized her by means of the neck and flung her sideways throughout a stack of cardboard cartons. She lay there shocked, like a raveled duchess stunned to discover herself under the influence of alcohol at a ball. As Wilder became away, wrestling with the puppy, the daughter ran in the direction of him. She had thrown the carving-knife apart. in a single hand she held her hair curlers, within the different a silver purse pistol. Wilder sidestepped out of her method, knocked the pistol from her hand and clubbed her backwards around the barricade. because the girls sat panting at the flooring, Wilder appeared down on the pistol at his ft, little greater than a child’s vibrant toy. He picked it up and commenced to examine his new area. He was once status within the front to the 35th-floor swimming-pool. The tank of foetid water, full of particles, mirrored the garbage-sacks heaped round the tiled verge. A small den were equipped within a desk bound elevator within the foyer. Beside a burnt-out fireplace an aged man—a former tax-consultant, Wilder looked as if it would recall—lay asleep, it seems that ignorant of the spasm of violence that had taken position. A chimney flue, shaped from lengths of balcony drainage pipe, exited over his head during the roof of the elevator. nonetheless keeping the pistol, Wilder watched the 2 girls. the mummy sat one of the cardboard cartons, matter-of-factly bandaging her arm with a strip torn from her silk costume. The daughter squatted at the ground via the barricade, rubbing the bruise on her mouth and patting the pinnacle of Wilder’s poodle. Wilder peered up the staircase to the thirty sixth flooring. The skirmish had excited him, and he was once tempted to press on the entire solution to the roof. despite the fact that, he had now not eaten for greater than an afternoon, and the odor of animal fats hung within the air round the hearth via the doorway to the den.