January 03, 2003 at 05:00 AM EST

The Scheme For Full Employment

type
Book
Current Status
In Season
author
Magnus Mills
genre
Fiction
We gave it a B-

The ”Scheme” is this: A battalion of wage earners putter around town from warehouse to warehouse in specially designed ”UniVans,” solely to pick up or drop off the replacement parts that keep their UniVans running. Mills’ nameless narrator is a veteran driver and happy cheerleader (”For without a doubt the UniVan was a glorious creation!”) who, like Mills, is pretty content just loping around amiably from point A to point B and back. Mills, called ”the acknowledged contemporary master of the working-class dystopic parable” on the same dust jacket that reprints a rare blurb from Thomas Pynchon, runs capitalist utopia through a hamster wheel, crafting a wry tale just a bit too subtle and straight; it might’ve broken more of a sweat.

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