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The Red Men

“Sumptuously written, with prose that glitters with a dark lustre like a Damien Hirst fly collage. intricately plotted, and a satirical point as sharp and and accurate as the scalpel of a brain surgeon: De Abaitua operates on the smiling face of the present to reveal the grimacing skull of the future.”
– Will Self

The boundaries between the real and the virtual break down in this literary science fiction thriller from the author of If Then and The Destructives.

File Under: Science Fiction [ Welcome to Redtown | Singularity Satire | You Are Data | Dr Easy ]

Only available in paperback in the US, and ebook in US/Canada

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Available on November 7, 2017.
SKU: AR9780857667564
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Once, Nelson was a radical journalist, but now he works for Monad, the corporation that makes the Dr Easys, the androids which police London’s streets. They also make the Red Men, versions of real people imagined by a shadowy artificial intelligence… and they’re looking to expand the program.

Nelson creates Redtown, a digital version of a suburb, where the deepest secrets and desires of its citizens can be catalogued and studied. But the project’s goals are increasingly authoritarian and potentially catastrophic. As the boundaries between Redtown and the real world break down and revolution against the Red Men is imminent, Nelson is forced to choose between the corporation and his family.

Previous Publication

First published by Snowbooks 2007 and Gollancz ebook 2013


The Red Men


Matthew De Abaitua

Publication date

07 Nov 2017

Cover Art Raid71

7th November 2017 | 9780857667564 | epub & mobi | $6.99/$7.99

US Print

7th November 2017 | 9780857667557 | Massmarket Paperback | $10.99

Goodreads URL Read & Review

“With The Red Men, De Abaitua joins the ranks of Philip K Dick, J G Ballard, Rudy Rucker and Lavie Tidhar, writers who see and understand what’s happening to reality before the rest of us do. That he is able to explore all this with warmth, wit and humanity is what makes The Red Men such a vital work of modern SF.”
Golden Apples of the West

The Red Men is a brilliant work of social theory, in the same way that (as I have argued before) novels by authors like J G Ballard and Bret Easton Ellis are works of social theory. The Red Men is as informative and thought-provoking, when it comes to working out how society actually works in the 21st century, as anything by Zygmunt Bauman, Ulrich Beck, or Manuel Castells.”
The Pinocchio Theory

“The initial chirpy tone and thread of black humour running through this book gets steadily darker. It is compelling, clever and terrifyingly plausible. It is also savagely violent. As a sharp and accomplished writer, de Abaitua is completely capable of delivering a nuanced, satirical take on the subject.”

“This brilliant book tests the reader with questions relevant to our day-to-day lives.”
Fiction Uncovered

“Like the famous elephant surrounded by blind men, its shape and texture suggest differing beasts depending on where you grab it. Literary thriller and domestic drama, thought experiment and drug trip, cyberpunk and technopagan, satire and prophecy.”
Strange Horizons

“Matthew de Abaitua makes Michel Houellebecq seem like Enid Blyton.”
Matt Thorne

“de Abaitua can write better than any average Booker shortlist could if they all networked their brains and collaborated.”

The Red Men resonates with everything. Everything here on this site, everything I’ve written, everything I’ve done. Everything I’m doing. In fact, ‘resonates’ is the wrong word. Shakes. It shook me. Read it.”
Magical Nihilism

Praise for Matthew de Abaitua

“A talented novelist in his own right.”
Will Self, for The Independent

Matthew De Abaitua's novel The Red Men was shortlisted for the Arthur C Clarke Award and adapted into a short film ‘Dr Easy’ by Shynola and produced by Film4/Warp Films. His science fiction novels IF THEN (Angry Robot, September 2015) and The Destructives (Angry Robot, 2016) complete the loose trilogy begun with The Red Men. His second book was a memoir and history, The Art of Camping: The History and Practice of Sleeping Under the StarsThe Economist described it as one of the books of the year. He lectures on creative writing and science fiction at the University of Essex and lives in Hackney.

More information about the author