From the author of Apathy and Other Small Victories, a darkly comic novel, set in the near future, about the race to find a missing cyber program with the power to bend reality, all before a fast-approaching comet destroys the earth.
THE HOLLYWOOD SPIRAL
by Paul Neilan
Grand Central, June 2021
(chez Writers House – voir catalogue)
In the near future, after the internet grinds to a halt amid a wave of cyber-attacks, a company named Zodiac steps in to replace it with an evolved, augmented-reality version called The Grid. Harrigan, a hard-drinking private detective living as off-Grid as possible, is about to be evicted from his apartment when a stranger shows up asking for his help in finding Anna, an escort who he claims he’s desperately in love with. Turns out that through Harrigan’s new client, Anna has come into possession of a program/entity called Mirror, Mirror, which has the capacity to merge The Grid and reality, bending both to the whims of the program’s user. Soon Harrigan finds himself up against the last surviving organized crime gangs in Los Angeles, Zodiac’s mercenaries, and a mysterious group called The First Church Multiverse, all of whom are hot on the trail of Mirror, Mirror – if the comet rapidly approaching Earth doesn’t kill them all first.
Paul Neilan grew up in New Jersey before fleeing the Garden State for its polar opposite: Portland, Oregon. A graduate of Rutgers University, he worked a mind-numbing job in an insurance company where he spent much of his time asleep in the bathroom dodging his boss and his coworkers. It was in the uniquely creative zone of the stall of that men’s room, legs akimbo and drool puddling on the linoleum floor that he began to hatch the idea for his first novel, Apathy and Other Small Victories. He still writes best in the bathroom.