An interview with BFG editor Neal Pollack about his new novel satirizing pandemic policies
I helped Book and Film Globe mark the release of ‘Edge of Safety,’ a new satirical novel by its editor in chief Neal Pollack by reading the book and talking to him about it!
Pollack titled “Edge of Safety” after a ubiquitous edutainment soap opera that dramatizes the dangers of veering from health ministry edicts in the near-future Canada where the novel mostly takes place. The book traces the adventures of happily bourgeois Amelia Stewart and her dog Little Miss Daisy as Amelia evades and engages her employer, an autocratic Health Ministry that mandates lockdowns and markets social distancing regardless of any actual epidemics. She crosses the closed border to the United States, visiting a fourth-term Snoop Dogg-like President and enjoys the ongoing White House parties in the new capital– a domed Phoenix, Arizona.
Neal and I chatted about his experience of “lockdown” in Austin, Texas, where a 15-minute drive one way from his home led to a locked-down ghost town while a similar drive the other way led to a Texas suburb where the pandemic barely disturbed normality. We discussed satire, pandemic rules and how he portrays the leadership of the United States as well as the “Canada of the mind” in a book subtitled “The Very True Story Of How The Citizens Of Canada Had The Courage To Stay Home So No One Ever Died.”