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Zero Visibility Possible

First novel in a trilogy exploring the effects of our dystopian times on inner lives

At the center of the worst mass shooting in US history is a black hole. Why did a wealthy, white middle-aged man who liked guns and gambling and once worked for the U.S. government cause this public tragedy? Set over three days in 2017, a small group of journalists is tasked with witnessing and making sense of senseless mass violence as the truth-telling structure collapses. They struggle with malleable facts, disinformation, and conspiracy theories; they are lured by and resist the increasingly popular notion of a hallucinatory mirror world, the sense that important truths are hidden.

A dark satire about American violence and media and the lure of conspiracy thinking, this is the first novel in a trilogy exploring the effects of our dystopian times on inner lives.

Nina Burleigh is a national journalist and bestselling author of seven previous books on a wide variety of topics, including a notorious CIA-connected murder, Napoleon’s scientists in Egypt, archaeological forgery in Jerusalem, the Amanda Knox trial, Trump’s women, and the Covid vaccine. She is the publisher of American Political Freakshow and lives in New York.

“Nina Burleigh’s Zero Visibility Possible is a brilliant, dark, witty, and obsessively readable mystery about one of the darkest and strangest crimes in America’s recent memory…and shows us that the more our technology knows about us, the less we know about ourselves, and even the narrators of our national story don’t always tell us, or themselves, the whole truth.”

Rick Wilson, author of Everything Trump Touches Dies

“In her stick-of-dynamite of a debut novel, Nina Burleigh displays a journalist’s eye for detail, a filmmaker’s skill at world-building, a poet’s way with words, and a sibyl’s gift for unpleasant prophecy. Set in an alternate reality where Donald and Ivanka exist but Steve Bannon does not, Zero Visibility Possible is a riveting thriller about mass shooters, CIA pilots, crypto operatives, and journalists of all stripes: men and women, young and old, innocent and jaded, celibate and insatiable, corporate sellouts and those still speaking truth to power. Over the span of a few days, we witness a collision of old media and new, old money and new, old reporters and new, old spooks and new—and the resulting explosion goes all the way to Plattsburgh. It’s The Crying of Lot 49 meets Network, Slow Horses in the (virtual) newsroom: a brilliant and highly entertaining book that I’m told, and I hope, is the first in a trilogy. Zero Visibility Possible possesses the ineffable and rare quality summed up in six magic words: I can’t stop thinking about it.”

Greg Olear, author of Fathermucker and Totally Killer

“2017. A baffling, horrific event, the greatest mass shooting in US history. A public tragedy with a black hole at the center, the enigma of the wealthy white middle-aged man who liked guns and gambling and once worked for the U.S. government. A small group of journalists are tasked with making sense of it while struggling variously with PTSD, failed legacy media, debased public leadership, personal crises, sex, and lies. Zero Visibility Possible is a dark satire about people bearing witness to cruelty and violence, abject to algorithms and surveillance, and the lure of conspiracy thinking as disinformation ops flood the zone and anything seems possible and true in a society de-linked from agreed-upon fact.”

Ian Shapira, Washington Post

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