Red Pill

Red Pill

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NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK OF THE YEAR

A bold new novel about searching for order in a world that frames madness as truth from the widely acclaimed author of White Tears


After receiving a prestigious writing fellowship in Germany, the narrator of Red Pill arrives in the Berlin suburb of Wannsee and struggles to accomplish anything at all. Instead of working on the book he has proposed to write, he takes long walks and binge-watches Blue Lives, a violent cop show that becomes weirdly compelling in its bleak, Darwinian view of life. He soon begins to wonder if his writing has any value at all.
 
Wannsee is full of ghosts: Across the lake, the narrator can see the villa where the Nazis planned the Final Solution, and in his walks he passes the grave of the Romantic writer Heinrich von Kleist, who killed himself after deciding that “no happiness was possible here on earth.” At a party, he meets the charismatic Anton, creator of Blue Lives, and the narrator begins to believe that the two of them are engaged in a cosmic battle. Anton is “red-pilling” his viewers—turning them toward an ugly, alt-rightish worldview, he thinks, as he starts to wonder if he is losing his mind.
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