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Cocaine Nights Paperback – 3 Jul 2014


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Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Fourth Estate; New Ed edition (3 July 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0006550649
  • ISBN-13: 978-0006550648
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 2.3 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (58 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 38,190 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

J.G. Ballard was born in 1930 in Shanghai, where his father was a businessman. After internment in a civilian prison camp, he and his family returned to England in 1946. He published his first novel, The Drowned World, in 1961. His 1984 bestseller Empire of the Sun won the Guardian Fiction Prize and the James Tait Black Memorial Prize, and was shortlisted for the Booker Prize. It was later filmed by Steven Spielberg. His memoir Miracles of Life was published in 2008. J.G. Ballard died in 2009.

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Review

‘Utterly compulsive’ Sunday Telegraph

‘Snort up “Cocaine Nights”. It’s disorientating, deranging and knocks the work of other avant-garde writers into a hatted cock’ Will Self

‘The possessor of a terrifying and exhilarating imagination – and a national treasure’ Guardian

‘Guaranteed to keep you reading into the early hours’ Sunday Times

‘Thrillingly wired … dazzlingly original’ Independent

‘The terrifying thing about Ballard is his logic; is this science fiction or history written ahead of its time?’ Len Deighton

About the Author

J. G. Ballard was born in 1930 in Shanghai. After internment in a civilian prison camp, his family returned to England in 1946. His 1984 bestseller ‘Empire of the Sun’ won the Guardian Fiction Prize and the James Tait Black Memorial Prize. His controversial novel ‘Crash’ was made into a film by David Cronenberg. His autobiography ‘Miracles of Life’ was published in 2008, and a collection of interviews with the author, ‘Extreme Metaphors’, was published in 2012. J. G. Ballard passed away in 2009.


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Customer Reviews

3.4 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jane Aland VINE VOICE on 3 July 2007
Format: Paperback
This is an interesting novel that melds one of Ballard's warning fables of the near-future with a whodunnit mystery, as a man tries to find out why his brother is pleading guilty to the charge of killing five people, when everyone is sure of his innocence. It's interesting and strange, but the novel doesn't quite succeed as well as it might though - Ballard's ideas on a future society of idle zombies and the shocking methods needed to 'wake them up' are disturbingly compelling, and the whodunnit mystery is at least initially intruiging, but the novel never quite gells into a satisfying whole. Still, an interestingly bizarre scenario, though Ballard would mine similar territory more succesfully in his next novel Super-Cannes.
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By Dr. Delvis Memphistopheles TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 16 Jun 2011
Format: Paperback
Briliant satire on lower middle class aspirations brimming with the desire to remain immobile and passive acting out a living boredom. This book provides valuable insights into the imaginary dream of going abroad to live out the lie. Ex Pats trapped in sepia memories of "Great" Britain; faded and tinged, popping up on yahoo websites to bark out their acidic recollections.

A connection between those who stayed and those who returned are the encoded memories. Relating to the time they left, nostalgic Britain; class divided, 60's/70's/80's football/TV shows, music (Glam, Mod, RNB, Soul) and all those carefully prepared memories of how it was round 68 Butterworth St. or Corporation Avenue; back in the day.

Returning, now all gone, bulldozed and transformed.

Lying in the sunshine soaked and baked in relative wealth the escapees feel the oil soak in as they lie on top of a shag pile. Instead, whilst living in glamorous surroundings; pueblo stucco, swimming pool, barbercue, sunshine, beach; an echo of various style over substance boredom drops in for a coffee, resonating with an inner doused ennui. Modern facades based on crowing outwardly to neigbours, portraying german success, whilst secretly craving life back in the council house.

Within the novel they drink themselves silly, intrigue, and then swap their partners. Bored with this lifestyle, go to the sands and keep on digging, looking for something that isn't there, a mirage inside the head. Theres only so much sun you can take.

This novel is full frontal nude expose of someone, who roles a conductor of communal violence to form social glue.
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Format: Hardcover
Set in a Spanish ex-pat community this a tense thriller written with sarcastic wit that explores to quote from the text , `a social economy based on drug-dealing, theft, pornography and escort services from top to bottom a condominium of crime'.

Charles Prentice arrives in this strange community to discover just why his brother Frank, manager of the local sports club as confessed to a charge of murdering five people in a house fire! Everyone, apart from the local police, is so sure of his innocence that Charles decides to do some investigating of his own. His questioning causes all sorts of attacks upon him as he discovers a strong undercurrent suggesting that there are much more complex things of concern to the community than the death of five people!
At first Charles is sickened by the behaviour of the residents he meets but gradually he is drawn into their world. The person who has the most disturbing effect upon him is Bobby Crawford the club tennis coach who changes Charles Prentice just like he did his brother Frank before him. So much so that he accepts his logic without fully understanding that he is becoming involved in a bizarre social experiment.
A clever totally unexpected ending, though afterwards when I was still thinking about the novel I realised it was the obvious one, just that I had missed the hints!
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By Mr. M. Bounds on 8 Jun 2009
Format: Paperback
i enjoyed this book. the plot was quite implausible, but non the less i still found it a good read.
the ultimate goal for a lot of people is to have un limited leisure. how many people wish that there numbers come up on the lottery? the reality seems to be that if you do not have enough to occupy your time, you will decend into a bored waking coma.this seemed to of happened to the ex pat community in estrella de mar.the book goes to show how new experience can jolt us out of our torper. i liked the idea that activities that went on had got neighbours out and interacting with each other and help generate a community spirit again and helped rejuvenate the resort. i liked this idea and found it resonably plausible, but a majority of the ex pat community descending into a shared world of crime, pornography and murder i didnt. but on the whole if you can suspend belief, you will find this an enjoyable read. this was my first j g ballard book and it will not be my last.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Greshon on 29 May 2008
Format: Paperback
This was another book I read upon finishing my English Literature degree, eight years ago, for light relief. The fact that it was modern and that it was set in sunny Spain appealed to me, but the book didn't live up to my expectations. I'd found Empire of the Sun stuffy when I had read it at school, but I had liked Crash very much, thinking it in fact a masterpiece (a pleasant surprise after that dreadful film). But Cocaine Nights seemed a bit tired, without flashes of Ballard brilliance. Solid stuff, all the same, but unless you are an avid Ballard fan, there is better stuff out there worth spending your time on.
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