I’ve been trying to get a hold of this book for some time. The only Max Barry book that appears to be readilly available in the uk is his best selling Jennifer Government. I’ve managed to hunt down his other two books Syrup and now company on amazon but i’ve yet to see either in book shops. Which is a shame…
This is Max Barry’s third book, he specializes in corporate Satire, his first book “Syrup” was about a guy getting screwed over by the marketting practices of the Cola industry, his 2nd book Jennifer Government was about a a near future where corporations ruled the world.
Company looks at management practices, The main character Jones is a graduate recruit at Zephyr Holdings Ltd, he’s eager to to work his way up the corporate ladder and when he joins the corporate sales team he finds they are in the midst of a crisis of monumental proportions. Somone has had two doughnuts leaving none for Roger.
Jones tries hard to fit into the company who’s strange pratices and crazy bureaucracy confuse him, it takes him a while to ask the question “What does the company actually do” and when he asks it no one seems to know. His investigation and what leads on from that form the rest of the book which I can’t really tell you much about without ruining it for you. The scary thing is I can believe that it could be true.
Company is a really easy to read book, I’m normally a slow reader (My record for reading one book was 6 years) but I read Company in 2 Days, and thats only because I had to go to work. My one criticism is that having read Barry’s other books I’m noticing some similarities in the characters, I think that Jones is really similar to the main character in Syrup, and the I’m-your-friend-but-you-have-to-watch-your-back-because-I’m-in-this-for-me-but-I-love-you-really antagonist/protagonist/love interest reminds me an aweful lot of the character who played the same role in Syrup. That not to say that they are bad characters, just they are awefully similar.
I’d recommend company to anyone who’s ever worked in a company, or taken a management course, it’s a good story with interesting (if predictable) twists and turns, and it covers novel subject matter.