Jeff Noon's most recent book, Falling Out of Cars, has not been published in the United States. The official story is that it simply hasn't found a publisher. After even a cursory reading, it seems more likely that the Food and Drug Administration is withholding their approval pending an infinite series of tests. I'm surprised that Customs isn't seizing copies of the book at the border; currently, Falling Out of Cars can be delivered to U.S. addresses from Amazon.co.uk and other fine establishments on the far side of the Atlantic Ocean. (Copies do occasionally show up on various resale sites within the US, so check around for bargains.)
Since his first novel more than a decade ago, Noon's twin loci have been drugs and music. Vurt, his debut, was something of a page-turner set in near-future Manchester, where brightly-colored feathers placed on one's tongue served as gateways to a series of virtual worlds.
Falling Out of Cars continues Noon's program of literature as drug. The world is contemporary Britain, or nearly so-a virus has been let loose that interferes with its victims' ability to interpret symbolic representations: words drift away on pages, street signs lose their iconic meanings, photographs blur beyond recognition, and mirrors have become a gateway to madness. Even something as normal as wallpaper is transformed into something foreign and incomprehensible:
The story is told in fragments, purportedly the diary of Marlene Moore, whose ability to read what she has written is virtually nonexistent, except under the intermittent influence of the 'Lucidity' drug. The effect, therefore, is that we perceive the story through the effects of the virus itself, whose changes resemble an atavistic return to Julian Jaynes' conception of the "bicameral mind," down to the voices in the head that victims-and Noon's readers-experience.