|Author||J. Neil Schulman|
|October 16, 1979|
Alongside Night is a dystopian novel by science fiction writer J. Neil Schulman intended to articulate the principles of Agorism, a political philosophy created by Samuel Edward Konkin III, to whom Schulman dedicated the work. It was first published during 1979 by Crown Publishers, with subsequent paperback editions released by Ace Books during 1982, Avon Books during 1987, Pulpless.com during 1999, and Amazon Kindle during 2009. It has completed production as a feature movie by Stonegait Pictures, Braeburn Entertainment, and Jesulu Productions. and is in theatrical distribution via TUGG.com. A new movie tie-in edition of the novel was released by Pulpless.com in 2013 as both a trade paperback and a Kindle edition, and an Unabridged Audible.com audio book edition is linked from the Amazon.com catalog page. Also released in 2013 is J. Neil Schulman's Alongside Night—The Graphic Novel, based on Schulman's movie screenplay.
The story begins with the United States collapsing economically -- inflation increasing rapidly, the government struggling to keep its power. Trading in foreign currency has become illegal. Businesses are subject to rationing. As a result, there is a growing black market for everything. It's the world as Samuel Edward Konkin III conceived it would be just prior to a successful agorist revolution.
Elliot Vreeland, son of Nobel Laureate Austrian School economist Dr. Martin Vreeland, learns of his father's apparent death and is rushed home from school. But the death is fake, a plot concocted by his father to escape arrest by the FBI who are collecting "radicals" accused of worsening the economic crisis. Eliot is sent by his father to collect some gold coins that had been stored in case the family ever had to escape.
Upon his return home Elliot finds his family missing. FBI agents enter the house searching for Eliot, who manages to escape.
Elliot becomes acquainted with the Revolutionary Agorist Cadre, an organization plotting the end of the US government by means of counter-economics. The cadre is strong and well organized, and has its own militia. Elliot enlists their help and meets Lorimer, a girl similarly hiding from the law, with whom he soon develops a personal relationship.
As the government's stability weakens, its leaders tighten controls on communication, travel and trade. But this fails to avert economic collapse, causing the private sector -- the unions, syndicates and many unorganized individuals) to take control of the old infrastructure.