TWO YEARS AGO J G Ballard published his Complete Short Stories, a remarkable collection warranting his reputation as one of Britain's most formidable writers. At 1,200 pages, the ninety-six stories were notable for their range and consistency over nearly half a century. There was no falling oe if anything, the stories grew bolder and more experimental. Many of the qualities of that volume are on hsvlav in his latest novel: a visionary science-fiction A, style, a forensic imagination, and, above all, prescience.
In Millennium People, he produces an all too credible vision of British society teetering on the edge of a collective breakdown. The middle classes are in revolt because of rising council taxes, overpriced housing and exorbitant utility bds. (Quite by chance, as I was reading this book, Radio 4 broadcast