I read The Water Knife quite recently and I found it a great book, driven by the characters and the depth of context: you taste the dust and despair of a near-collapse Phoenix on your lips. Like Ellis, it reminded me of John Brunner’s masterworks, The Sheep Look Up and Stand On Zanzibar, but free of Brunner’s McLuhanesque, novel-as-output-of-algorithms, ’60s writing style. The Water Knife is now the novel I most hope to see made as a movie.
Here’s from Ellis:
[…] the book lives in the details: from people on the street drinking their own piss through water-processing sacs to the legal and physical mechanics of managing and stealing water supplies in an America of permanent drought and existential panic. As a speculation, its accessibility, intelligence and storytelling velocity may make it the most effective near-future warning sign this year.