4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
..this is not a novel..,
By A Customer
This review is from: Report on Probability A (Paperback)
This is not a novel. Not really.
Here is what happens: three men named G., S., and C. watch a house. Other people watch them. The end.
Well, see, there's people watching people. And more people watching those people. And more people watching them. And you, reading the book. Or not.
And no, there is no point. If you read this book you may come to the last page and get angry. You may wish to know what the point is. That's fine. That's a good question. This is a perfectly normal reaction.
The book functions in the same way as a painting which recurs as an image throughout: we perceive things in one limited snapshot of time. We are asked to provide our own context. We are asked to decide what happens next ourselves.
Aldiss was one of the science fiction "new wave" authors of the 60s, trying to reconfigure science fiction from its pulp roots to a form which would serve to deal with people. I believe it was JG Ballard that coined the term "inner space" for this sort of thing. Whatever. 'Report..' is a fantastic, flawed examination of what a novel is in relation to the reader, shored up somewhat by the hokey old science fiction concept of the parallel world. And in its own way, hilarious.