Book Review – Zero K

by Don DeLillo (Picador) ISBN: 9781509822850

Not since his Underworld, which I read in 1998, have I been so singularly occupied by the body of thought presented in a novel as by Zero K. To me it is a meditation on life and death in a time when life on earth seems apocalyptic and alternatives are available.

Jeff Lockhart is invited to The Convergence, a remote cryogenic centre, by his billionaire father Ross to say goodbye to his terminally ill stepmother who will undergo the body freezing process hoping to return to life in a healthy condition. During his bewildering stay Jeff learns that the treatment is also available to people who choose to suspend living until they can return to a better world with better people. Ross has chosen this option but it takes another two years before he does it.

His visits to The Convergence cause Jeff, who doesn’t commit to much, and who makes sense of people and events by naming and defining them, to reflect on life and how people try to control it.

In just 274 pages of profound prose, DeLillo opens a visionary portal to questions of language, art and contemporary life that has yet to release its hold on me.

Josine Overdevest

Buy the book here

Posted on: 5th June 2016