Faceless in Nippon – Dale Brett
Slip through the aqueous mist whispering nostalgic sweet nothings. Embrace this invitation to become enveloped. Your breathing slows to a controlled pant before settling into its new tingling default, a hum of vacant reception, a reassuring murmur of inviolate presence, an ontology of de facto delirium. You mind meld with Dale Brett’s narrator, lapse into a state of mind malleably purposed to your bagged bones and jerky, spastic energy. Cruise control with unblinking techno-addled fascination in an oblivion of echoing sorrows passing epsilons of diaphanous clarity through a carnival of lewd and cerebral pleasures decadent and ancient, a love letter to an amorphous city of reverie rendered as bleary-eyed consumer simulation, a reveille for the overwhelmingly sensate, atomized into arresting poetic narrative constellations. Brett’s nameless metropolis is a promised land for active psychonauts and enthusiasts of stupefacient pastimes, veteran readers with a taste for narcotic drip allures, the world-weary human tourist pining for exotic lands while wired to a modem. For the wandering alien of existence whose faith tabernacles are a vivid, stroboscopic carousel of interpassivity, a Bohemian Bermuda gesturing at a Xanadu of qualia, the shambles of eternity but echophenomena. Chasm or cataract, all terra incognita, microdosing damnation, a gospel for raffish waywards of Otaku and other esoteric persuasions, continuity as tundra of pulsing melancholy. A lucid high for burnout syndrome. Exhilarating, charming mythopoeia for the modern computer mode sentients of the new decade, an aesthetic rarefaction to a world beat. By turns whimsical and winsome, by orders alchemical, etheric, cosmic, alethic- ride the inexorable plunge to lush latitudes, sink into egalitarian opulence, not substance impairment but rapt surrender, a living end reminder you haven’t lived ’til you’ve downloaded this sim, this proto-dystopian technological Mecca, this deconstructive underworld, brain molten and photosensitive, erogenously tactile. Quintessentially vibe-compatible. Comical, blissed out. Incomparably lovely. Dale Brett collapses wide-eyed wanderlust with the Promethean inertia of the zeitgeist. A word machine marvel. A seismic arrival for a protean raw talent. A resonant confirmation that visionary gusto remains unabated in literature.
Faceless in Nippon is perhaps the most sincere contemporary novel about banality, modernity and existential ennui to exist, this side of 202X. With surprising ease and admirable restraint, Brett competently weaves the tale of one individual’s attempt at self-discovery and extreme escape. It is powerful, mildly depressing at times, almost always funny, rarely cynical and completely unironic. I wholeheartedly applaud any writer capable of crafting a complex (but easy-to-follow) story structure without the employ of meta-narratives and post-everything tropes. Brett presents a writing style that is both exuberant and attentive—enough, to present juxtapositions that alone, pretty much approach silent excellence and supreme intellectual sophistication. The not-so-subtle anti-groupthink motifs within the text posit a very important question vis-à-vis the perceived status quo, and what is to be expected of humanity, as a whole, in the years to come. There are several breathtaking moments and unique descriptors, like: ambient observations RE: the different colours of the sky, the muted magnificence of neon lights and their effect on the substance of the night, abstract ideas of the ethereal and its ineffable properties, the magickal aspects of vapourwave music, the stunning ethnographical discourse and of course, Blade Runner. If any or all of this sounds familiar, I assure you, Brett takes what you think you know, and turns it into the unfamiliar.
—Mike Kleine, author of Kanley Stubrick and Lonely Men Club
The time has come … pick up … put down those bread knives … Dale Brett has written with a livid expression … attacking the aluminium fascia of literature … kicking the coffee cans of Asia. Dale Brett wrote a book. A meditative trance of a novel … full of nocturnal sounds … painful blows … the menial tasks of modern society … the strange feeling from a variety show … the bitter taste of cheap drinks … cup noodles … late-night advertisements … J-pop … and beautiful human bodies. The broken murmurs of inner loneliness … the blank mass of social media pleasure-feeds … the convenience store. Faceless in Nippon. F.I.N. Fin. Begin. Finnegan’s Wake. The beautiful skins of previous worlds. Apartment buildings full of hentai magazines. Glass containers of bizarre taxidermist creatures. Dale Brett’s novel isn’t some mandatory script … it is a mental scab … a burnt-out body encompassing kawaii and key chains … the public intimacy show … excessive mayonnaise … Styrofoam and corporate entrails … warm waves of gaudy sashes and electricity. Nameless in Japan. Eyeless in Gaza. The overhead ramps of your social conditions. Turbo jets inside a fancy shell. Wasteful conglomerations of real people. This book contains the night’s forgotten moments … the hard times … the artificial light … dirty river … facial expressions … Japan … flip phone … capitalist perfection. Inside … on these pages … the glossy lustre of Jesus … aluminium fascia … cigarette ash … greasy convenience store debris. Don’t be a suspicious customer … read this.
—Shane Jesse Christmass, author of Belfie Hell and Xerox Over Manhattan
5.5 x 8.5″. 266 pages perfect-bound. Cover Art by Arturo Herman Medrano.