Ivon by Michael Aylwin
Brilliantly original concept. Never read a book like it Guardian
Wonderfully dark satire about the future of sport Will Greenwood
You think sport is bonkers now… this could be the futureSunday Mirror
The year is 2144, and the world is powered by sport - politically and practically. Each community owes its prosperity or otherwise to the success of its teams and athletes. A person's class is determined by their aptitude for sport. Once their useful life as an athlete has expired, they are placed in stasis at an age predetermined by that class.
But not in Wales.
Separated from the rest of the world by a huge wall, the Welsh still play games for joy. They play, they carouse, they love, they die. They have fun.
Of all the Welsh, the greatest sportsman is an unreconstructed genius called Ivon. When the chance arises to become the first Welshman to cross the great divide into England, he cannot resist. His parents, exiled from England before he was born, know what London will do to him. They are desperate to have him back. But London will not give up an asset like Ivon so easily.
Ivon is a celebration of where sport has come from and a satire on where it is going.
Published 15th February 2018
Publisher link https://reddoorpublishing.com/
Author twitter link https://twitter.com/mdmaylwin
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I love sport so my intrigue was high when starting this book. Just when you think sport is beginning to go one way in the world nowadays, then something comes along to change the direction and a whole new can of worms is opened and our perception of sports is changed again. And this is exactly what this book is about! It's a whole different level of sport and quite a scary and bleak look into how our love for sport - either watching or playing - can be changed forever!
Thankfully this is written in a bitingly funny way and I loved how it matches the way we know sport now over the borders in Wales where spectators are free to make noise in the stadiums, and the players are free to make their own choices on the field, to how the world of sport has evolved in England where it is all about productivity and taking away the players' choice of how a game is going! They must follow orders for the best of the team! To Ivon playing sport is his life! He can think of nothing better!! So he dreams of playing in England but the moment he arrives there he soon finds out the dream isn't quite what he imagined! The whole of english life is so different - even sex is scheduled in to daily life to help with the productivity, along with making calls by telepathy and people being chipped so they are fully compliant!
It did take me a while to get into this book while trying to understand the concept and terminology - i am very easily confused! - but once my mind had come to terms with it all I found this to be a fascinating, funny but dark look at a world that could soon be here!
Many thanks to the publisher and author for the advanced copy in return for a fair and honest review.