Immortality Inc – Robert Sheckley

Image used for review purposes only.

Image used for review purposes only. Source.

A man dies in the Fifties and is resurrected one and a half centuries later. He wakes to a world of suicide booths, of a Mars colonised by China, of entire plant ecologies that devour themselves for the entertainment of restaurant patrons, of mindswapping, of zombies and poltergeists and werewolves, and of frustratingly antiquated gender roles.

I didn’t like this book. I thought Robert Sheckley was meant to be funny, but this book was earnest. There was a tacked-on romance that felt completely gratuitous. The woman was an official at the company the resurrected the man, and the first person he saw in the future. She’s described as being formal, unemotive, stiff, and I have to say, what’s wrong with that? The man decides to romance her out of spite, and predictably she gives in.

Still, the suicide boothes and overall plot were likely to have inspired Futurama, and that was great show. Plus, my edition says that there’s a Mick Jagger film based on it. Everything I’ve read about the movie makes it sound awful, so of course I have to see it.


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