J. G. BALLARD
The Unlimited Dream Company
An imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers 77–85 Fulham Palace Road London W6 8JB 4thestate.co.uk
This edition published by Fourth Estate in 2014
First published in Great Britain by Jonathan Cape in 1979
Copyright © J. G. Ballard 1979
The right of J. G. Ballard to be identified as the author of this work has been asserted by him in accordance with the Copyright, Design and Patents Act 1988.
Introduction copyright © John Gray 2014
Interview copyright © Vanora Bennett 2004
‘Fly Away’ by Malcolm Bradbury reproduced with permission of Curtis
Brown Group Ltd, London on behalf of the Estate of Malcolm Bradbury copyright
© Malcolm Bradbury 1979
A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library.
This novel is entirely a work of fiction. The names, characters and incidents portrayed in it are the work of the author’s imagination. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events or localities is entirely coincidental.
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Cover by Stanley Donwood.
Photography by Peter Stone.
Ebook Edition © SEPTEMBER 2012 ISBN: 9780007374885
From the reviews of The Unlimited Dream Company:
‘A remarkable piece of invention, a flight from the world of the familiar and the real into the exotic universe of dream and desire … dense and erotic and magical, a pleasure to read’
MALCOLM BRADBURY, New York Times Book Review
‘A remarkable fantasist … rich, seductive … Ballard’s eloquence is as lush as the flowering vines he hangs from his multi-storey garages’
‘I was completely beguiled … Worked out with Ballard’s mastery, it is the most cunning evocation of a dream world’
‘The idea is blindingly original and yet as basic as a dream of the whole human race. Moving, thrilling, exquisitely written’
‘Ballard is one of the few genuine surrealists in business … At its most heightened, Ballard’s prose is an impacted mass of images, dense and iridescent as mercury, stranger, you might say, than fiction’
‘An extraordinary and touching piece of surrealism … [a] strange and beautiful extravaganza’
‘Extraordinary … there is no doubt of the intensity and originality of the imagination that conceived the scenes of Shepperton transformed into a paradise … far beyond the scope of most novelists’
‘One of the most startling and original novelists. Extremely witty, Ballard’s most optimistic book contains some of his strongest, most vivid prose … exuberant fantasy’
Introduction by John Gray
CHAPTER 1 The Coming of the Helicopters
CHAPTER 2 I Steal the Aircraft
CHAPTER 10 The Evening of the Birds
CHAPTER 11 Mrs St Cloud
CHAPTER 12 ‘Did You Dream Last Night?’
CHAPTER 13 The Wrestling Match
CHAPTER 14 The Strangled Starling
CHAPTER 15 I Swim as a Right Whale
CHAPTER 16 A Special Hunger
CHAPTER 17 A Pagan God