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The Brief and Frightening Reign of Phil Kindle Edition
Welcome to Inner Horner, a nation so small it can only accommodate one citizen at a time. The other six citizens must wait their turns in the Short-Term Residency Zone of the surrounding country of Outer Horner. It's a long-standing arrangement between the fantastical, not-exactly-human citizens of the two countries. But when Inner Horner suddenly shrinks, forcing three-quarters of the citizen then in residence over the border into Outer Horner territory, the Outer Hornerites declare an Invasion In Progress--having fallen under the spell of the power-hungry and demagogic Phil.
So begins The Brief and Frightening Reign of Phil. Fueled by Saunders's unrivaled wit, outlandish imagination, and incisive political sensibility, here is a deeply strange yet strangely familiar fable of power and impotence, justice and injustice--an Animal Farm for our times.
"An astoundingly tuned voice--graceful, dark, authentic, and funny--telling just the kinds of stories we need to get us through these times."
"Mr. Saunders writes like the illegitimate offspring of Nathanael West and Kurt Vonnegut. [His] satiric vision of America is dark and demented; it is also ferocious and very funny."
--Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times
"A master of distilling the disorders of our time into fiction."
Want to know the story behind the story of award-winning author George Saunders's new novella, The Brief and Frightening Reign of Phil? Then read "Why I Wrote Phil," an exclusive essay from Saunders concerning the genesis of his new work, which has been praised as possessing "an absurdist wit as playful as Monty Python's and a vision as dark as Samuel Beckett's."
Read George Saunders's Essay, "Why I Wrote Phil"
More from George Saunders
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--This text refers to the paperback edition.
- ASIN : B000OCXH3G
- Publisher : Riverhead Books (6 September 2005)
- Language : English
- File size : 443 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 134 pages
- Best Sellers Rank: #233,960 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from India
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Written in 2006, almost fourteen years ago, this novella is still so frighteningly prescient. We are living it in a way, in almost every country. Most countries of the world today have their own Phil, and their reign isn’t brief.
The country in the book is called Inner Horner, large enough for only one resident at a time. There are citizens who wait to gain entry, and these citizens fall under the rule of the despot Phil, which further leads to mass chaos and hysteria.
The novella is funny (intentionally I guess, at the same time making you see the mirror), dark, and in no way, you will not think about it after you’re done. The so-called people in the story are human in their actions, but maybe not in their appearance. They resemble machines, so maybe Saunders is making multiple points at the same time.
The Brief and Frightening Reign of Phil is for sure a quick read and a political allegory that we are perhaps a part of without realizing it. It is the kind of book that will jolt you a bit and makes you also look at the on-goings in the book from a distance by removing the human element. It is a book that delivers its message if you want to see it. Coupled with some lucid illustrations, this book blends the elements of the surreal and fantastical with great ease, making for a highly introspective read.
Relevant in the background of current political scenarios in most countries. So it was as real as it was dystopia.
In the end - Phil was just forgotten. What an end to the dictator.
Most of all, I loved Phil's speech. Big words strung together to make it sound coherent, to attract mass appeal, but in reality, being nothing but just words. Now, who talks that way? ( your guess as good as mine!)
Wonder why this book isn't more popular.
Definitely recommend this to anyone who likes satire/ politics.
Top reviews from other countries
Man merkt schon: Die Geschichte ist ziemlich abgefahren. Und sie ist eine böse Satire auf Grenzpolitik, die langsam immer mehr in Schikane eskaliert. In einigen Rezensionen wurde die Geschichte mit Farm der Tiere verglichen, aber das hängt diese Geschichte zu hoch. Sie ist wirklich nett, aber von der bizarren Welt und dem sehr typischen Tonfall des Autoren abgesehen, bietet sie keine wirklich neuen Ideen. Sie ist aber eine angenehme Leselektüre - die mit etwa 120 Seiten aber auch sehr kurz ist und an einem Nachmittag durchgelesen ist.
Eine ebook-Ausgabe (zum Zeitpunkt dieser Rezension sogar die günstigere) einhält noch die Kurzgeschichtensammlung "In Persuasion Nation". Die Kurzgeschichten da sind logischerweise noch kürzer, unabhängig voneinander und haben nichts weiter mit der Titelgeschichte zu tun. Sie sind ganz nette, satirische Beschäftigungen mit den Amerikanischen Medien. Nett als Dreingabe, aber nicht mehr.