The Third Decrease

September 5, 2009 / Michelle Houellebecq, world’s best novelist.

Warning: if you consider reading ahead (even a few hundred words from the middle of the book) to be a spoiler, then this is a spoiler. Back away from the blog, and go have a nice cup of tea.

Excerpt from Houellebecq:

A kind of joy descends from the physical world. I am attached to the Earth.

The rocks, completely black, today plunge through vertical stages to a depth of three thousand meters. This vision, which terrifies the savages, inspires no terror in me. I know that there is no monster hidden in the abyss; there is only fire, the original fire.

The melting of the ice occurred at the end of the First Decrease, and reduced the population of the planet from fourteen billion to seven hundred million.

The Second Decrease was more gradual; it happened throughout the whole of the Great Drying Up, and continues to this day.

The Third Decrease will be definitive; it is yet to come.

The Possibility of an Island, p. 79 (Vintage paperback edition).

I started it over a year ago so, yeah, this one is taking me a while…

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