Books written by Ray Sullivan

Saturday, 4 November 2017

Did I predict Brexit?

A year last June the UK voted to break away from its long standing association with the European Union. It was the year the world, apparently, went mad, with our US cousins handing the keys to the White House to a guy who'd never shown any aptitude for politics while the UK threw away thirty percent of its value, give or take.

For the record, I voted to stay. I don't have a deep rooted love of the EU, and fully agree it has faults that need to be addressed, but I couldn't find any reasonable information regarding what leaving would entail, and sixteen months later still can't. But this isn't going to be a 'remoaner' post - there's plenty of them to read, not one of those posts is going to make a change to our future, so I'll save my breath.

However it occurred to me that I'd forecast the Brexit vote not once, but twice. In Parallel Lives, my first novel, the UK has clearly ceded with the EU and in fact had become isolated from the rest of the world, with the government becoming increasingly paranoid about anywhere that was not the UK. Then, in my latest novel, Assassin, the UK is again separated from the EU. In Assassin the government has suspended democracy as part of the fight against terror and not gotten around to reinstating it. Scotland is an independent nation and my own home country, Wales, is notionally independent but financially betrothed to England, dependent on English money and trade just to keep its head above subsistence.

Of course, the word Brexit doesn't appear in either novel - it didn't exist when I wrote both books ten or so years apart. Both books describe a UK many years down the line, wrapped so much up in itself that it's losing it's plot. Watching the progress of Brexit so far, neither book looks unreasonable right now.

Post Brexit the UK might be fine - I fully accept that the Leave campaign concept might work, indeed, given that we are sleepwalking that way anyway I really do hope they're right - but so far all I read, and I read a lot, I'm not brimming with confidence. Currently the government appears to be staggering from crisis to crisis, ironic given that the whole referendum was an attempt to stabilise the Conservative Party but will probably serve to destroy it given enough time. I doubt that my predictions in Parallel Lives and Assassin are correct. If you've read either book I'm sure you'll agree, however I can't eliminate the possibility that the UK, post Brexit, won't end up introverted instead of the outward facing country Leave supporters hope for.

If you haven't read either book then why not mosey over to your favourite bookseller and download a copy. Both are currently very reasonably priced (one is free on some sites, just don't include Amazon on that thanks to their marketing stance, but never forget they'll price match if you tell them - they will sell you paperback versions, but I can't help with the cost of them unfortunately).

Here's a link to where you can obtain copies from:

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