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Half World - Scott O'Connor

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Published: 28th May 2014
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Inspired by the shocking history of Mkultra, the secret CIA mind-control program.

In the 1950s, the CIA began a clandestine operation known as Project Mkultra, in which unwitting American and Canadian citizens were subjected to insidious drug and mind-control experiments. In the two decades of the program, countless lives - and families - were destroyed.

Haunted by these events, acclaimed novelist Scott O'Connor has crafted a literary thriller that vividly imagines the devastating emotional legacy of such a program. Henry March, an unassuming CIA analyst forced to spearhead Mkultra's San Francisco branch, finds himself bridging an untenable divide between his devotion to his family and the brutality of his daily task. Torn between duty and conscience, Henry's own identity begins to fray, until he reaches the ultimate breaking point. Amid the wreckage, he disappears without a trace.

Twenty years later, as the country struggles under the weight of the Vietnam War, another troubled young agent, Dickie Ashby, will risk everything to find Henry. dickie must piece together the staggering aftermath of the crimes before it's too late.

From a writer hailed for his ability ;to make something beautiful of unspeakable matters' (The New York Times), Half World is both a page-turning drama and a transcendent celebration of our enduring capacity for hope.

Read Caroline Baum's Review

Inspired by the true history of the CIA's shockingly primitive early mind control program (think of the real early experiments that resulted in the plausibility of The Manchurian Candidate scenario then, The Bourne Identity and Homeland today). In the 1950s, the CIA began a clandestine operation in which unwitting American and Canadian citizens were subject to clumsy and dangerous drug experiments which destroyed not only the lives of the subjects but the testers and their families. Novelist Scott O'Connor has turned his personal horror at these events into a superbly taut and sinister literary thriller that examines questions of duty, conscience, patriotism and secrecy. Of course these themes have great moral resonance and relevance today, as notions of privacy and political paranoia play out across all media and national boundaries. Classy, vivid, disturbing story-telling with an acute psychological edge.

About the Author

Scott O’Connor was born in Syracuse, New York. 'Among Wolves', his 2004 novella about a boy who believes his parents have been replaced by imposters, was praised by the Los Angeles Times Book Review for its “crisp, take-no-prisoners style.”

'Untouchable', his first novel, will be published by Tyrus Books in May, 2011. He lives with his family in Los Angeles.

ISBN: 9781925106015
ISBN-10: 1925106012
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 432
Published: 28th May 2014
Publisher: Scribe Publications
Country of Publication: AU
Dimensions (cm): 23.4 x 15.3  x 3.1
Weight (kg): 0.57