A novel by Matthew McIntosh
Matthew McIntosh, theMystery.doc
Purchased a hardback? Download your free ebook >
Matthew McIntosh, ilMistero.doc
Dicembre, 2019, ilSaggiatore◹
Purchased a hardback?
Download your free eBook >
Reading theMystery.doc is like wandering through a gigantic art installation: On white walls there are looped filmstrips depicting events in slow-motion and groupings of old family photos; computer monitors are scattered everywhere, most showing message-board postings or cryptic codes; from unseen speakers issue phone conversations or snippets of lectures. You stop for a few minutes to watch actors in the middle of mundane activities. You keep getting ambushed by exhibits on the 9/11 attacks. You pick up various documents, some of which have been redacted in black or look like avant-garde poems. You feel like Alice in Wonderland.
...But everything here is blown up to Imax proportions.
The workings of memory is [a theme], and in this way theMystery.doc resembles [Proust’s] In Search of Lost Time. ... theMystery.doc also resembles In Search of Lost Time in length, but this 1,664-page novel reads quickly. Because of all the illustrations, graphics and sparsely populated pages, it’s like reading a 300-page book.
Art installation, performance piece, vision board: these are odd ways to describe a novel, but McIntosh clearly wants to update that old genre, to give it a postmodern makeover ... At a time when most novels still resemble their Victorian forebears, it’s refreshing to encounter a novel that actually looks like a 21st-century production.
British writer Alan Moore, author of last fall’s longest new novel, Jerusalem, compares theMystery.doc to T.S. Eliot’s The Waste Land, which is apt. Just as Eliot used a disorienting collage form to represent post-World War I angst, McIntosh does likewise for post-9/11 anomie.
...a remarkable achievement.