About the Book
What’s the book about?
Stephen Wald is trapped: exhausted by a monotonous job; bound and chained by the compulsive thoughts of his obsessive personality; and — most frustratingly — constrained to a 17.2″ wide cushion of foam and fabric during a packed seven hour flight. As he suffers the needling indignities of modern air travel, his mind turns away from his surroundings and it becomes clear that this trip is no ordinary vacation, but an attempt to escape.
Nearly a century later, the world has become host to a wondrous array of technologies that make Wald’s problems obsolete. In this future, a government agent named Chandrasekhar kidnaps the beautiful heiress of the world’s greatest fortune and flees the Earth to a city travelling among the stars in search of a vision he cannot explain. He is everything that Wald is not: a man of arresting action, a pulp lead in a nearly absurd sci-fi world.
As the parallels between Wald and Chandrasekhar unfurl, the foundations of the future world crumble under the inconsistencies of eighty years of interconnected history, fraught with the tragic misuse of innovation by base con-men and well-intentioned philanthropists. Events, phrases and thoughts begin to recur across the threads of each story — the odd inflection of a woman’s voice, a sequence of numbers, the lyrics to a song — calling into question the nature of each reality.
Repetition is a literary speculative fiction novel that takes a routine occurrence in modern life — an uncomfortable plane ride to a far destination — and posits a future where technology has liberated us from the bureaucratic & financial constraints of travel.
How do I read it on the site?
You can start with the beginning of the book, and then use the >> and << controls that appear on the side of the webpage in order to easily move forward and backward. The posts are minimally formatted, matching the original text.
What are the novel’s influences?
The theme of the book revolves around core science fiction conceits such as faster-than-light travel and super materials, but in narrative form is closer to that of a magical realism novel. It channels Borges as much as Vonnegut, and is as strongly influenced by glam rock and cheap TV as it is by true literature. The book references or draws direct inspiration from sources which are partially listed here.
How is the book structured?
The book contains traditional chapters that are further divided into 3 parts, forming a narrative triptych in which themes recur. The first segment is a modern story that takes place in the very near future; the second forms a future history that connects the book-ending parts, and the third is a pulp-like adventure set at the end of the 21st century.
Where can I get the book?
The book is available only on Amazon Kindle right now, as well as on this site. It can be purchased here. The Kindle app is available on a large number of digital platforms (iOS, Android, PC), so any device with the Kindle app can be used to read the novel. It can be loaned out as well.