Happy Utopia Day, Joe McCarthy

Happy Utopia Day, Joe McCarthy

by J.T. Lundy

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Happy Utopia Day, Joe McCarthy by J.T. Lundy

Combining political satire with espionage parody, J. T. Lundy tells the story of an unlikely secret agent facing a bizarre, xenophobic government conspiracy

Chris Thompson thought his youthful dreams of being a secret agent had long ago been put to rest. He has a wife and child, a stable job with the US Customs Department, and--aside from a minor incident involving outsourcing American apple pie production to Bangladesh--no real worries.

This all changes when Chris receives a phone call from the president of the United States, Oscar I. Wright, regarding a secret invasion of America from Canada and Mexico--an invasion somehow tied to the "Big Mac Party," a cultish political party that worships the legacy of the notorious Communist-hunting Senator Joseph McCarthy. Soon, Chris is equipped with firearms, designer suits, government helicopters, and an array of gadgets worthy of any top-notch spy. His mission: infiltrate the mysterious "Emergence" program founded by McCarthy within the shadowy halls of the US government--and, ultimately, save democracy as we know it from the xenophobic demons of America's past.

A unique, bubbling combination of Christopher Buckley-esque satire, political farce, and espionage comedy, Happy Utopia Day, Joe McCarthy reveals--through encounters with a hilarious cast of hallucinating politicians, Border Patrol commandants, crew-cut torturers, stuttering computer wizards, supposedly immortal pilots, and more--just how frightening a contemporary abuse of government power can be, and just how much we sometimes stand to lose when we decide to pursue our dreams.

Product Details

BN ID: 2940148782056
Publisher: Emerald Book Company
Publication date: 09/30/2013
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
File size: 1 MB

About the Author

J.T. Lundy lives in Naperville, Illinois, where he writes novels and screenplays, and attempts to help his wife manage the chaos from raising three growing boys. He likes to read, write, travel, and eat good food. A graduate of Indiana University, he also holds an MFA from Spalding University and an MBA from the University of Chicago.

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Happy Utopia Day, Joe McCarthy 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 9 reviews.
EDL85 More than 1 year ago
“Happy Utopia Day, Joe McCarthy” is a madcap satire that veers into darker and heavier territory as the story goes on. At the opening, Chris Thompson is a low-level government worker with the U.S. Customs Department who gets a sudden call from the White House—the president wants to see him.   Within no time, Chris finds himself with a made-up top secret clearance, ends up “government dead” in a plane crash, and travels 1,000 feet below the Earth to infiltrate a secret group from the McCarthy era called “Emergence.” And that’s just the beginning of the adventure, which will see Chris traveling the country, making a host of new friends, and getting swept up in the seamy side of politics.   While I usually am not a huge fan of satire, “Happy Utopia Day, Joe McCarthy” is genuinely clever and amusing—it made me laugh more than once. Part of its charm is that it doesn’t stick just to satire—though it lampoons the government all the way through—but creates tension through dangerous situations. Chris’ relationship with his wife (rocky at first, as she thinks he’s cheating on her and doesn’t believe he’s now a special agent) adds some emotional depth to the book, as does the secret fate of those who run the Emergence program. The cover is bright and eye-catching, and represents this book well—it’s a fun, vibrant romp that fans of contemporary fiction will likely enjoy and be amused by, at the same time as they are prompted to think about government manipulations, propaganda, and the slippery slope of hardcore beliefs. 
GarrettZ More than 1 year ago
In Happy Utopia Day, Lundy creates a compelling political and satiric tale that builds on the comedic and absurd traditions reminiscent of Dave Barry and Kurt Vonnegut.  The novel is an absolute pleasure to read, with a well-written and straightforward narrative masterfully executed in a biting view of the contemporary American political landscape through the lens of a whimsical fictional bureaucracy driven by McCarthy's antiquated and nonsensical personal philosophies. When the united states is threatened by Mexico, Canada, and the new progressive cultural and political McCarthyism is picking up steam, a new operative is necessary.  But why?  The only person he president could possibly consider for their secret mission is an office-based former CIA applicant Chris Thompson, a man with James Bond aspirations but whose life has taken on a wholesome middle-class American family man avenue.  With a super-duper-top-secret-totally-awesome laminated id badge bestowed by the president himself, and an unclear agenda takes him across the United States to complete his not-quite-lucid objectives as his identity, existence, and understanding of the world is obliterated.  Thompson is surrounded and helped with his progress by a wacky, sophisticated troupe of characters from sorority girls, to strip club bartenders, hackers and con-men, and is a memorable character whose personality is an American everyman in extraordinary circumstances. Well-designed, well-written, editorially astute, and a great pleasure to read for any audience, Lundy's work is a sharp commentary on the ridiculousness of top-down political systems and the influence of crowd-thought on our everyday existence.  The approach Lundy takes brings a spectrum of humor and a straightforward storytelling that makes the piece accessible and a pleasure to experience.   Some other reviews suggest background knowledge in regards to American history and McCarthyism, but after reading those I would say that a rudimentary grade school knowledge is just fine to get everything out of the book, and a simple wiki search would suffice if you have absolutely no idea about it.  I also liked the stark simple design of the book itself, and it was perfectly formatted with corresponding hard copy pages for my kindle.  A fun little read.
eheinlen More than 1 year ago
This book was fairly well-written. I did see a few grammatical errors, but not major ones. The story wasn’t my type of story and it didn’t catch and hold my attention, but it wasn’t horrible. Someone else may find it engaging.
Ebienic More than 1 year ago
I love farce, and I love politics (okay love/hate politics) so this book is right up my alley. Seriously, how can you even pass up a title like Happy Utopia Day, Joe McCarthy? Lundy imagines Joe McCarthy’s utopia and then blows it way out of proportion, just like any good farce should. I doubt I agree with all the politics and presumption but it is a funny read without getting too preachy. Hero and all around special snowflake Chris Thompson is a mostly honest customs agent (except for that Bangladesh thing he let slide) who, completely out of the blue, gets sent on a secret agent mission by the President. Fancying himself the next James Bond (ba da BA DA) he takes off on a mission that of course turns out to have a terrible twist, and he must decide whether or not he can save us all. It all centers around a secret program put into place by Joe McCarthy himself to save the American way of life, but has been horribly corrupted along the way. He encounters all the the things a secret agent should - Black Hawks, invasions, secret tunnels, a bouncer side kick, his best friend scamming on his wife, a college computer nerd, a Tri-Delt party, Indians….the list goes on and on. If you have ever wondered what would I happen if Joe McCarthy had gotten his way, well this probably isn’t it, but it’s still a good read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
IndieHeart More than 1 year ago
This well-written political satire focuses around a simple basic premise, stated in the book by its protagonist Chris Thompson as "If the people aren't vigilant, a dictatorship could happen here in the United States. McCarthy nearly proved it." Obviously, it will help the reader to have some concept of exactly who Senator Joseph McCarthy was and how he successfully spearheaded the most shameful witch-hunts the United States has ever participated in. The book is timely in a political age when some of our elected representatives feel more than comfortable accusing government whistleblowers of being Russian spies as Rep. Mike Rogers did with Edward Snowden earlier this year. However, the book really isn't heavy handed with the politics: you don't have to be a conspiracy theorist to enjoy it. Although, if you are, you'll love it. The novel is a well-written, over-the-top, political comedy/adventure, with an often tongue in cheek attitude. It is good-natured rather than nasty or accusatory, and I really enjoyed it. I recommend it for fans of political satire, action flicks, and left-leaning communist sympathizers :-) I received a copy of the novel for free in exchange for my honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Having a very thought-provoking storyline, this book seamlessly combined humor and thrills. It really crosses literary genres; part political satire, part spy thriller, 100% enjoyable. Once I started reading the book I was not able to set it down until it was complete. I highly recommend this work to anyone looking for a good laugh and a good story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book seamlessly interweaves the remnants of McCarthyism into an edge of your seat thriller, while at the same time keeps you chuckling. It's masterful satire. I mean, come on, who outsources baking apple pie? A must-read for the thriller and satire audience.