Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin)
Dead in Long Beach, California

Wrong Way

9780374610661 fc
Paperback, MCD × FSGO, 2023
Mcneil  joanne by lizzy johnston

Joanne McNeil

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Joanne McNeil’s debut novel is an idea-driven portrait of a woman cornered by capitalism who lands her dream job.

For years, Teresa has meandered from one job to the next, settling into long stretches of time, unable to move ahead in any field or career, the dreaded move from one gig to another starting to feel unbearable. When a recruiter connects her with a contract position at AllOver, it appears to check all her prerequisites for a “good” job. It’s a fintech corporation with progressive hiring policies and a social justice-minded mission statement. Their new service for premium members: a functional fleet of driverless cars. The future of transportation. As her new-hire orientation reveals, the distance between AllOver’s claims and its actions is wide, but the lure of financial stability and a flexible schedule is enough to keep Teresa driving forward.

Joanne McNeil, who often reports on how the human experience intersects with tech, brings all of her compassion and criticism about labor and technology to Wrong Way. In this thought-provoking, fresh, and humane novel, she captures the existential perils imposed by a nonstop, full-service gig economy, and exposes the toll of corporate calculations on the human spirit.

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Read the First Chapter: WRONG WAY

  • “ A Ballardian tale of pristine corporate campuses and aspirational product marketing, Wrong Way reveals to us the very human cost of the AI future we’ve already been sold and makes us question how many lies and absurdities we’re willing to accept in order to try to feel like we belong here. Subtle and beautiful, Joanne McNeil’s masterful debut is a powerful example of what the contemporary novel can and should be in our endlessly perplexing times.”—Tim Maughan, author of Infinite Detail“No one understands the dark side of the gifts offered by billionaire tech gurus better than Joanne McNeil. With Wrong Way, our most prescient tech critic has turned to fiction, giving us a glimpse of a near future defined less by wondrous new gadgets and genius AI than by with the pretense of innovation slapped on ever more alienating work done by people who remain, despite everything, human. In prose at times dreamy and lacerating, McNeil shows us what’s coming, and how easily we might wind up accepting it.”

    —Tim Maughan, author of Infinite Detail

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