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The Book of Dave by Will Self
The Book of Dave moves back and forth between present-day London and a time centuries in the future when the seas have risen so high that England is an archipelago. In our time, Dave Rudman is a London cabbie who has "the Knowledge," a complete map of London in his memory. He's also going through a nasty divorce and is about to lose custody and all contact with his son. Driven by rage, Dave writes "The Book of Dave," full of his knowledge of London and his misogynist rants about his wife and modern society. He buries the book in his wife's backyard in hopes that one day his son will find it and read it. In the future, on an island that was once part of Hampstead Heath and is now called Ham, the people live their life based on their prized possession of earlier times, "The Book of Dave." The Hamsters speak with a London dialect, their men and women live apart with children moving back and forth, and a priest called The Driver makes sure they don't stray from the lifestyle specified in their holy book. Will Self's book has received mostly positive reviews with the Seattle Times saying, "The evolution of The Book of Dave is intercut with its application in the future, and the result is occasionally hilarious and always smart and imaginative. Though his prose can be undisciplined, Self's energy and ideas pick up the slack and make this a remarkably sharp book about the many ways people can go terribly wrong."