Book – Liberation, by Brian Francis Slattery

Just finished reading Liberation: Being The Adventures of the Slick Six After the Collapse of the United States of America, and it’s a fine, fine book. Essentially a pulp adventure story, but quite politically aware, this book is about, well, the aftermath of an economic collapse of the United States. But one of the most interesting things about this book is that it avoids traditional novel plot structure. The protagonist is hyper-capable, and there appears to be very little conflict… it’s like playing a video game in God mode or something. And yet it pulls it off as quite entertaining… the conflicts arise in the subtexts: this isn’t a book about love, but the love interests are where the tension arises. Mostly, it’s just beautiful to read.

I’m a little bit disappointed by the authors portrayal of the anarchist character, who is described as a “militant anarchist” and whose single goal primarily revolves around blowing things and people up with bombs. There is an anarchist organization mentioned in the novel as well that appears to have a similar desire… despite the author name-dropping Bakunin, it is clear that he is not at all versed in modern anarchism. There is a similar slander portrayed against the anti-industrial folks, but it is a bit more interesting, intentionally outlandish, and doesn’t pretend to connect to anything that actually exists in the real world.

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