Ice | Penguin Random House Canada

Ice

50th Anniversary Edition

Publisher: Penguin Classics
A dazzling and haunting vision of the end of the world, Ice is a masterpiece of literary science fiction now in a new 50th anniversary edition with a foreword by Jonathan Lethem

"One might become convinced that Kavan had seen the future . . . A half century after its first appearance, Kavan’s fever dream of a novel is beginning to seem all too real." -The New Yorker
 
In a frozen, apocalyptic landscape, destruction abounds: great walls of ice overrun the world and secretive governments vie for control. Against this surreal, yet eerily familiar broken world, an unnamed narrator embarks on a hallucinatory quest for a strange and elusive “glass-girl” with silver hair. He crosses icy seas and frozen plains, searching ruined towns and ransacked rooms, all to free her from the grips of a tyrant known only as the warden and save her before the ice closes all around. A novel unlike any other, Ice is at once a dystopian adventure shattering the conventions of science fiction, a prescient warning of climate change and totalitarianism, a feminist exploration of violence and trauma, a Kafkaesque literary dreamscape, and a brilliant allegory for its author’s struggles with addiction—all crystallized in prose glittering as the piling snow.
 
Kavan’s 1967 novel has built a reputation as an extraordinary and innovative work of literature, garnering acclaim from China Miéville, Patti Smith, J. G. Ballard, Anaïs Nin, and Doris Lessing, among others. With echoes of dystopian classics like Ursula Le Guin’s The Lathe of Heaven, Kurt Vonnegut’s Cat’s Cradle, and J. G. Ballard’s High RiseIce is a necessary and unforgettable addition to the canon of science fiction classics.

"One of the most mysterious of modern writers, Anna Kavan created a uniquely fascinating fictional world. Few contemporary novelists could match the intensity of her vision."  —J.G. Ballard

“There is nothing else like it.” —Doris Lessing
 
For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,800 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.

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It was essential for me to find her without delay. The situation was alarming, the atmosphere tense, the emergency imminent. There was talk of a secret act of aggression by some foreign power, but no one knew what had actually happened. The government would not disclose the facts. I was informed privately of a steep rise...
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PRAISE FOR

"One might become convinced that Kavan had seen the future . . . A half century after its first appearance, Kavan’s fever dream of a novel is beginning to seem all too real." -The New Yorker

"Ice is ambitious, unforgettable, and one of a kind. It demands to be experienced." -The Millions

"A writer of intense imagination…. Slippery, bizarre, and meticulously written…. A gripping and uniquely strange work of science fiction.” -Kirkus, starred review

"One of the most mysterious of modern writers, Anna Kavan created a uniquely fascinating fictional world. Few contemporary novelists could match the intensity of her vision."  —J.G. Ballard

“There is nothing else like it.” —Doris Lessing

"One [of] our greatest and most original novelists." The Guardian

"I can tell you about some women writers who truly are fantastic. One is Anna Kavan . . . she's caught in a haze and then a light, a little teeny light, come through. It could be a leopard, that light, or it could be a spot of blood. It could be anything. But she hooks onto that and spirals out. And she does it within the accessible rhythms of plot, and that's really exciting. She's not hung up with being a woman, she just keeps extending herself, keeps telescoping language and plot." -Patti Smith

"Kavan is a brilliant high-modernist writer whose work has largely fallen by the wayside, and it is truly a blessing that we have a new version.” -The Rumpus


"Brooding, mysterious...a fascinating marriage of the Goth novel with science fiction." —Publishers Weekly

"One of the most terrifying postulations of the end of the world." —The Times of London

"What a writer, and what a vision. What a perfect book to read in preparation for the end of the world." -Granta

"[A] marvelously gifted writer...an abundance of writing that astonishes with poetic brilliance." —Sunday Telegraph

"Unique...its incantatory powers move it beyond the scopt of science-fantasy." —Brian Aldiss

"Originally and masterfully written." —Columbus Dispatch