The Agony of Survival: A novel by Dr. Spyros Vrettos
Translated from the Greek by Harikleia Georgiou Sirmans
Edited by Dr. Constantine Santas
Cover art by Frana
Infinity Publishing December 2011
USD$13.95; 185 pages; 21 x 14 cm
This is the first novel of a trilogy which deals with the most vital issue of survival in its entire manifestation. It is a prophetic novel because it anticipates exactly and foresees, in general, the evolving and threatening reality of our world as well as the necessity to seek intelligent solutions of escape.
The central character, Aris, an investor and representative of high technocracy, realizes that something extremely menacing is developing worldwide. Extended natural disasters continuously afflict particular areas of our planet, which he can trace through his complicated electronic systems. Earthquakes and diseases emerge more often in the universal spotlight, while complicated and peculiar disasters threaten the foundations of the worldwide economy. It is like creating a new “entity,” something new that starts to control the fate of the world with its own destructive force. Philosophy and political thought are powerless to confront or to simply conceive the new complicated reality as well as the reasons that generated it.
Aris selects an area of rare beauty to live, to invest, and to connect electronically with the world. He lives with a woman, Danae, whom he met during his visit to the Museum of Modern Art in New York, and who stands by his side along with another couple that arrives later. He believes that he has discovered an exceptionally secure way to survive in an insecure world. But, does he survive?
On a second narrative level, both the characters of the story and the reader participate in the narrative tale of a panoramic screen, where Dante guides Virgil to landscapes of a recognizable planetary experience. Together, they discover dramatically the good and evil of modern life as well as the limits and possibilities of human reason.
The plausible question arises whether human intelligence suffices to confront the coming reality. However, the beauty of the broadening capability of human thought and virtue also emerge during this ordeal. Despite the threatening visible or invisible disasters, the possibilities of escape and rebirth in the story are depicted allusively in some passages and vividly in some others.
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