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Byers, Sam

Entry updated 22 April 2024. Tagged: Author.

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(1979-    ) UK author whose first novel Idiopathy (2013), though not literally fantastic, engages in edge-of-the-present, extremely funny Satirical assaults on the British Media Landscape, and on the chatterati's morganatic relationship with the Internet in general. His second novel, Perfidious Albion (2018), moves his focus forward, into a post-Brexit Near Future world where figures similar to those anatomized in the first novel find themselves even more deeply compromised as Britain begins to suffer the consequences of isolation. Questions of Identity – identity theft being hard to define when almost everyone is busy transforming themselves into monetizable code – irradiate the tale, without a significant climax being reached, though with hints that the new world is becoming or has already becoming an arena where Doppelganger Avatars reign. There is a sense throughout that the tools of Fantastika, here lightly deployed, have a teasing effect: a sense that the worst is yet to come, perhaps in the next book. Though it makes some use the hypocritically named Green, the same octopodal corporation that dominates Perfidious Albion, the narrative line of Come Join Our Disease (2021) focuses monothetically on its protagonist's absolutist refusal to remain part of the world we have bartered our privacy to. [JC]

Sam Byers

born Bury St Edmonds, Suffolk: 1979



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