The Employees: A workplace novel of the 22nd century by Olga Ravn, translated by Martin Aitken / ISBN 9780811231350 / 125-page hardback from New Directions, just published
Shortlisted for the International Booker prize, The Employees reshuffles a sci-fi voyage into a riotously original existential nightmare
"Everything I’m looking for in a novel. I was obsessed from the first page to the last. A strange, beautiful, deeply intelligent and provocative investigation into humanity. The Employees is an alarmingly brilliant work of art"― Max Porter
Funny and doom-drenched, The Employees chronicles the fate of the Six-Thousand Ship. The human and humanoid crew members complain about their daily tasks in a series of staff reports and memos. When the ship takes on a number of strange objects from the planet New Discovery, the crew becomes strangely and deeply attached to them, even as tensions boil toward mutiny, especially among the humanoids. Olga Ravn’s prose is chilling, crackling, exhilarating, and foreboding. The Employees probes into what makes us human, while delivering a hilariously stinging critique of life governed by the logic of productivity.