Fluctuations in solar radiation have melted the ice caps, sending earth into a new Triassic Age of unendurable heat, in this first major novel by J.G. Ballard, from 1962 (followed by The Burning World in 1964 and The Crystal World in 1966). London is a swamp; lush tropical vegetation grows up the walls of the Ritz, and strangely primitive reptiles and insects fight for dominance in the lagoon of Leicester Square. While some survivors drain the submerged streets of London in search of treasure, Robert Kerans—part of a band of scientists studying the changes—comes to accept this primeval new world, and finds himself strangely resistant to the idea of rehabilitating it. This edition includes an interview, reading list, and notes on Ballard and his novels.
"Extraordinarily prescient.... Ballard is a prophet."—Philip Pullman
"One of the brightest stars in post-war fiction. This tale of strange and terrible adventure in a world of steaming jungles has an oppressive power reminiscent of Conrad."—Kingsley Amis
"The terrifying thing about Ballard is his logic; is this science fiction or history written ahead of its time?"—Len Deighton