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Bug Jack Barron by Norman Spinrad

Bug Jack Barron (1969)

by Norman Spinrad

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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6121023,928 (3.63)19



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» See also 19 mentions

English (8)  Italian (2)  All languages (10)
Showing 1-5 of 8 (next | show all)
Brilliant in its day... ( )
  AlanPoulter | Jun 6, 2017 |
A good time, as a late-night talk show host takes on the economic powers that be. As the prose pretty good, I've considered it one of Spinrad's best. ( )
  DinadansFriend | Jul 12, 2016 |
Perhaps this book is no longer politically correct, but I found it to be one of the most interesting books I've ever read. The first chapter alone was so dramatic, funny and cynical, I fell over in my chair. Literally! Then I got up and read some more. On a more serious note, the book is one of the great New Wave science fictions of the 60s. It just missed winning the Hugo, losing to THE LEFT HAND OF DARKNESS, but hey, what can you do. It's still a fantastic book, full of socio-political commentary and proves that Spinrad had a crystal ball into the future. Ignoring the misses in technology, he very well describes the zany world of infotainment which surrounds us. Even though not everyone will understand New Wave SF, I can not give a higher rating. Everyone should read this book: whether they like it or not! ( )
4 vote sgarnell | Jul 10, 2012 |
In 1969, this controversial book (for its graphic sex scenes) was very much science fiction. Set in the distant future year of 1994, it depicted an amoral television video-jock exposing corporate racism, scandal and horror in a way that shocked many readers for its brutalism. Now, it looks like - well, reality. Jack Barron is recognisably a modern media figure; name your particular 'favourite'. When he confronts the scandal he exposes, his dilemma is the oldest one out - should he buy into the scandal for the biggest and best prize of his life, or should he do the right thing and expose it, and to hell with the consequences.

Although the book reads like something of its time - the language is definitely tripped-out 1960s and there are some aspects of this future that haven't happened, like legal marijuana and a black separatist Mississippi - you cannot get away from the fact that the world it depicts is painfully close to our own. Perhaps we need our own Jack Barron...

And the book has its place in the story of censorship in the UK. When it was serialised in Michael Moorcock's 'New Worlds', complaints about the sex led to W.H.Smiths withdrawing the magazine from sale; that led to the withdrawal of its Arts Council grant and the collapse of the magazine, setting the British SF magazine market back for nearly 25 years. Again, now it seems comparatively tame compared to all the rest of the material regularly carried on the news-stands. We certainly do live in the future. ( )
3 vote RobertDay | Jul 9, 2010 |
The best way to describe my reaction to Bug Jack Barron is that I simultaneously loved and hated it.

The loved is simple: it's a fairly gripping SF tale, even if the plot is occasionally predictable, and there's something about that prose that just feels alive.

The hated is a bit more complex, but can be boiled down to two main problems: the first is that the female characters are incredibly poorly developed, existing for little reason but to hero-worship the protagonist. The other is that the book is immensely dated; it is inherently, inseparably, and unavoidably tied to the '60s culture that spawned it in its world-view, its language, its predictions for the future, and everything else, all of which doesn't necessarily detract from the interest but does serve to make it far less relevant than it would have been 40 years ago. ( )
4 vote g026r | Apr 8, 2010 |
Showing 1-5 of 8 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (4 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Norman Spinradprimary authorall editionscalculated
Abadia, GuyTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Alpers, Hans JoachimEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Alpers, Hans JoachimAfterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Brautigam, DonCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Daily, DonCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Freas, Frank KellyIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gnidziejko, AlexCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gudynas, PeterCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Körber, JoachimTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Körber, JoachimPrefacesecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Koslo, PatrickCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lundgren, CarlCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Soriano, GádorTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Taylor, GeoffCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wurts, JannyCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Information from the French Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
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Information from the German Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
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Dedicated, in gratitude, to: Michael Moorcock and to The Milford Mafia
First words
"Zieht euch zurück, Jungs, ja?" sagte Lukas Greene gedehnt und winkte mit seiner schwarzen Hand (die er, aus einem unerfimdlichen Grund, einen häßlichen, kurzen Moment lang tatsächlich als schwarz sah) den beiden Männern (die er in diesem Augenblick der Übermüdung perverserweise als Nigger betrachtet) in den Univormen der Mississippi State Police (Nicken nach rechts) und der Mississippi National Guard (Verbeugung nach links) zu.
"Split boys, will you?" drawled Lukas Green, waving his black hand (and for that nasty little moment, for some reason, thinking of it as black) at the two men (perversly seeing them for the tired moment as niggers) in the Mississippi State Police (coon to the right) and Mississippi National Guard (schvug to the left) uniforms.
Information from the German Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Where have all the flowers gone, long time passing....?
When will they ever learn? When will they ever learn...?
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Information from the German Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
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Jack Barron, a call-in talk show host, is offered immortality from cryogenics millionaire Benedict Howards, after a man complains on Barron's show that he has been denied a place in the Foundation of Immortality's freezers because of his race, leading Howards to appeal to the popular media journalist to better his public standing.… (more)

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