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Identity Crisis

By: Ben Elton
Narrated by: Ben Elton
Length: 9 hrs and 58 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (448 ratings)

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Summary

Random House presents the audiobook edition of Identity Crisis, written and read by Ben Elton.

Why are we all so hostile? So quick to take offence? Truly we are living in the age of outrage. 

A series of apparently random murders draws amiable old-school Detective Mick Matlock into a world of sex, politics, reality TV and a bewildering kaleidoscope of opposing identity groups. Lost in a blizzard of hashtags, his already complex investigation is further impeded by the fact that he simply doesn’t ‘get’ a single thing about anything anymore.

Meanwhile, each day another public figure confesses to having ‘misspoken’ and prostrates themselves before the judgment of Twitter. Begging for forgiveness, assuring the public 'that is not who I am'.

But if nobody is who they are anymore - then who the f**k are we?

Ben Elton returns with a blistering satire of the world as it fractures around us. Get ready for a roller-coaster thriller, where nothing - and no one - is off-limits.

©2019 Ben Elton (P)2019 Random House Audiobooks

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Elton's Rifle!

I've always liked Ben Elton without ever being his biggest fan but in this book, he genuinely spoke to me. This is relentlessly bubbly, irreverent (of course) and often very funny. No target is safe in this very-near-future world of Elton's and he fires shots seemingly indiscriminately. While most politicians have made up names it's obvious who is being sent up, for example, Bunter Jollye and Plantagenet Greased-Hogg - can't imagine who they are modelled on . . .

Elton's story which is very well read by himself follows these politicians, various activists, the production team of Love Island and a number of people who find themselves caught up in the social media trends of the day. It cleverly jumps on very current issues; social media, fake news and the sheer fickleness of modern society. It explores and magnifies every facet of political correctness twisting it into unrelenting satire. Running through it all though is the outrage so often generated on social media, the impact it can have on people and very on trend how public opinion is manipulated insidiously for all manner of reasons.

At the centre of all this, is Detective Mick Matlock, a genuinely well-intentioned old-school policeman who is simply baffled by the ways and speed that the world is changing around him. He struggles to navigate his way through the booby-trapped jungle of modern language. The world has changed around him and he simply hasn't kept up with it which plunges him like a tragic hero from one awkward situation to another.

This is, of course, treacherous ground that Elton is treading but I think he strikes just the right notes and the book genuinely asks some fairly sobering questions about the direction our online, social media-driven society is taking. It may upset some, I'd be surprised if it didn't, but I'm more than happy to say I very much enjoyed it from start to finish!

17 of 18 people found this review helpful

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Fun, Cynical and Inciteful... Typical Ben Elton

I've haven't read/listened to one of Ben's books for some time but decided to give this a go as I work on the web and in social media despite my 'dad-man' status, so the subject struck home. I enjoyed the story and progressed through the book while working. As a result, I'm going to give it another go based on how much I enjoyed it but also for those small sections where my working mind wandered.

The book is certainly up-to-date and despite some slightly dodgy accents Ben's performance was good and made me want to keep going. The funny part is that I'm not sure whether he was highlighting the issues and problems with today's 'social media' world or bolstering (some of) the ideas presented. There is plenty of well-thought view and perspectives from the side of those considered snowflakes as well as the dinosaurs (like me apparently) that think there is a massive movement toward being over sensitive because nobody ever died of being offended. I'd love to sit and chat with him about it to try and find out where he, Ben, himself falls on opinions offered because the story is woven so well I can't tell... Which I assume has been done on purpose but also adds to the entertainment.

Obviously I'm not going to give away the plot even though it's predictable in places, and I won't get bogged down in discussing specific characters for fear of ruining it. Simply, I enjoyed the reading and it's a well thought out book. the story structure is typically Ben Elton and the cynical(?) and o#well observed story is clearly based on the state of our modern fast moving world...

If you like Ben's books I'm sure you'll love it.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

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Must Read for anyone in today’s society

This had the delightful effect of making me laugh in wonder and fear at the same time.

If you genuinely want a laugh and to be intellectually challenged at the same time read this

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Brilliant

Another great book by Ben Elton. Thoroughly enjoyed this
story. Fun, exciting and as always extremely perceptive. Highly recommended.

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storytelling at its best - Truth is stranger than

Dad cop "Mick Matlock" is trying to navigate the evolving minefield of identity issues whilst solving a murder. Where motive at first is hard to find, the gripping, intertwined stories of British political chaos amidst another referendum ("England Out" this time!!!), with Love Island making an appearance, soon reveal there is more to this apparently random murder than meets the eye. Fast-paced, funny, beautifully crafted..............opens up a world of information and perspective about how we choose to describe our identity and that of others...........or is it more accurate to say how we describe our identity and that of others is chosen for us by the raging influence of social media under the control and manipulation of a small but powerful 'set'. This book is now top of my list of all time favourite reads. Will be recommending it to anyone who will listen.

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Weak writing

Having not read a Ben Elton book for a good while I was hugely disappointed by Identity Crisis.
Take events from the last few years and recycle them with a flimsy wrapper and you have Identity Crisis

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another great classic from Elton himself<br />

Van outen manages to create a hilarious yet zeitgeist story. was even more interesting to read considering the context of brexit and love Island.

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Brilliant

what a cracker throughly enjoyed this book. will recommend to friends #veryfunny #zeitgeist #hashtag ##

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No one nails it like Ben Elton

Personally, I love everything by Ben Elton and this new one is a cracker spot on up to minute fast paced and so current all about Brexit but cunningly disguised. So quick, so witty, so Ben but beware - it's packed full of naughty words which are ok by me and suits the story but your Auntie Margory may be shocked. Loved it and as he might say `he absolutely owned it darling"

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  • David Mason
  • Rickmansworth, Herts United Kingdom
  • 07-06-19

IrritatingBen Elton style of narration and voice

Listened to about 15 minutes of this book but found Ben Elton’s voice too irritating to carry on. The book certainly has promise so maybe I will buy the book and read it.

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  • Robert
  • 07-05-19

initially difficult but well worth the effort

felt strained at the start . ended up really enjoying it. not quite the resolution I was expecting