The Gone-Away World (Vintage Contemporaries) (Paperback)

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Staff Reviews

Gone-Away World wins all the awards in the grand awards assembly in my head. It has the most gonzo pulp adventures, the wildest larger-than-life characters, the cleverest witticisms, the most absurd pratfalls, the most astonishing plot twists, the most biting critique of the military industrial complex, the strangest and most affecting love stor(ies), the deepest reverence for compassion and ingenuity, and the lowest tolerance for greed and hatred and stupidity.  It's all action and laughs except then you find you really, really need to talk about it all with someone over a drink or seven.  I can't actually tell you anything else about it because I might spoil something (I'm possibly overexcited), so read the back and then go ahead and buy it so you can start reading it and we can talk then.

Picked by Jessica in Ft. Greene

— From Staff Picks

October 2008 Indie Next List

“Nick Harkaway's first novel, The Gone Away World, is hilarious, wonderful, and surreal. It is a kind of post-apocalypse mercenary troop muckabout with ninjas, monsters, epic kung-fu battles, and a really compelling theme about the utter banality of every step towards becoming truly evil.”
— Lars Townsend, Politics & Prose Books &, Washington, DC


A hilarious, action-packed look at the apocalypse that combines a touching tale of friendship, a thrilling war story, and an all out kung-fu infused mission to save the world.

Gonzo Lubitch and his best friend have been inseparable since birth. They grew up together, they studied kung-fu together, they rebelled in college together, and they fought in the Go Away War together. Now, with the world in shambles and dark, nightmarish clouds billowing over the wastelands, they have been tapped for an incredibly perilous mission. But they quickly realize that this assignment is more complex than it seems, and before it is over they will have encountered everything from mimes, ninjas, and pirates to one ultra-sinister mastermind, whose only goal is world domination.

About the Author

Nick Harkaway is the author of Tigerman and Angelmaker, and a nonfiction work about digital culture, The Blind Giant: Being Human in a Digital World. He is also a regular blogger for The Bookseller's FutureBook website. He lives in London with his wife, a human rights lawyer, and their two children.

Praise For…

“A flat-out ferociously good novel.... Reads like a surrealist smashup of Pynchon and Pratchett, Vonnegut and Heller.”—Austin Chronicle“Harkaway delivers plenty of action and surprises.... Likely to be this season’s major conversation-starter.”—San Francisco Chronicle“A gripping, satirical, postapocalyptic war epic populated with mimes, ninjas, bureaucrats, chimera, and gun-toting nerds.”—New YorkMagazine"Very funny and hugely entertaining. . . . And brilliant. Read it."—Milwaukee Journal Sentinel "Bewilders, amazes, entertains. . . . a Catch-22 for the 21st century. . . . a work of extraordinary imagination and charisma. . . genius"—The New York Observer"Leaves the reader gasping for both adjectives and description. It's a powerful and accomplished first novel that weaves elements of romance, mystery, SF/F and -- yes -- thriller together in a way that leaves no doubt that the master storyteller gene really is something that can be passed along."—January Magazine"Vivid and exciting. Harkaway manages to meld a vision of war more germane to today's world, and take it to its most horrifying, apocalyptic conclusion."—Charleston City Paper

Product Details
ISBN: 9780307389077
ISBN-10: 0307389073
Publisher: Vintage
Publication Date: August 11th, 2009
Pages: 576
Language: English
Series: Vintage Contemporaries