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3.53  ·  Rating Details ·  1,430 Ratings  ·  40 Reviews
Unable to move his legs after being injured in the line of duty, policeman Walter Toland finds new freedom in Killobyte, a virtual reality computer game, but when a deranged hacker blocks his exit from the game, Walter must fight for his life.
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published January 5th 1993 by Putnam Publishing Group (first published 1993)
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(showing 1-30 of 2,247)
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I really enjoyed this book. I thought that the total immersion game theme was fun and well done, a chance to put modern people in Medieval and other situations.

I didn't have any major problems with the plot or characters. I actually thought they were both very well-done. I would rate it higher except I think it may have become a bit dated in recent years, and it kind of threw me off at times.

Baal, the main female character, has diabetes, and is completely ostracized for it. Everyone is afraid
Aug 05, 2016 Maya rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who likes video games
Shelves: tcf-2016, wobble
I picked this one up on a whim at the library - I was curious if they had any in the Xanth series, which I'm currently picking my way through, and I stumbled upon this gem instead.

It's not perfect. A book hardly ever is. However, this was pretty dang good. There's a good amount of romance, action, and humor - enough to make sure everyone is taken care of. The premise is interesting and doesn't let you down. And the writing, as usual, is excellent. I only wish there were more novels in this worl
Sep 24, 2014 Bill rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Standard bit of Piers Anthony story-telling with Piers being mostly serious. His style is light and breezy even if the subject matter isn't. The info about the phone lines is a bit out-dated but otherwise it's a nicely built world.
Apr 16, 2014 Robyn rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I got this book when it was new, which is a good 20 years ago now. Back then the virtual reality aspect seemed really cool and cutting edge. Now the gaming is all very dated and awkward. I can't imagine people enjoying it much today who aren't either Anthony fans or re-reading the book after having read it long ago. I still own my copy because of the nostalgia factor, but I can certainly recognize its flaws. I'd say one of the biggest, then and now, is Anthony's obsession with suicidal teen girl ...more
R.B. Hathbury
Jan 06, 2016 R.B. Hathbury rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016-readoff
The first book on my shelf to start my great 2016 Read-Off. I loved the Xanth series as a child, largely for the rampant puns, but I've only read this and The Willing Spirit of his standalone works. (At least, that I recall.)

I got rid of The Willing Spirit several years ago after a reread, and it looks like Killobyte is going to go the same route* for a lot of the same reasons. Neither has the charm that I remember Xanth having, and I find the characters somewhat off-putting.

Both of the prot
I found this book in my senior year and it was one of the first books that really connected with Video Games. Although it's not the best written nor most riveting, I feel like this book was the granddaddy to books such as Ready Player One in that it delves into the world of virtual reality and what that means for people who are not happy with who they are in real life. Again, not life changing, but not awful either.
Aug 25, 2015 Joseph rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is one of those novels that you just overlook if you're going by genre. It's not fantasy, not really. It's some strange mix of science fiction, with just a little cyberpunk.

people compile lists of their favorite VR novels, and most of them never gave this a chance..because hey, isn't Piers Anthony that guy who wrote those stupid magic Florida novels we read as kids? (not to say that's MY view...I still have fond, fond memories of some of those punny novels).

It's got it all, a believable s
Nov 14, 2014 Ryan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The technology representation was ok - not as dated as you would think for a book that is 20+ years old. Especially the mindset of the villain, which is a good representation for people who commit similar activities today. However I felt that the mindsets of some of the other characters was quite dated, especially relating to sex and consent. I felt that overall the intent of the novel was to portray many different positive messages for people who feel left out or alienated. It accomplished this ...more
Sean Randall
Aug 15, 2014 Sean Randall rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is, if not the first work of Anthony's I actually read, the first I enjoyed so much that I recognised his name as a tour de force. Of course, I reread it for these few reflections, but I almost didn't need to: it's a book I devoured time after time after time. It’s on par with every big book, series or author that shaped my reading life, and there are many of those.

I have a very strong memory of listening to this book on a Road Runner or Book Courier, both of these are very niche reading m
Jan 15, 2013 Brian rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed the lighthearted tone and easy to read style of this book, it made for a quick and easy read. In the end though, it was a bit too quick and too easy to make it all that enjoyable.

As a result, the few areas the authour put a lot of focus on, like the female lead's medical issues, and the religious factions in one of the settings ended up sticking out like sore thumbs.

If you could make yourself stop giggling every time the modem was running up user's phone bills and preventing phone call
Noah Vickstein
Jul 02, 2009 Noah Vickstein rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I first read this book in what I seem to remember as fourth grade, as the Internet was coming into its own. Around this time I was first exposed to the burgeoning AOL chatroom scene, mysterious and inviting, with implications that could hardly be grasped. It was a new and total thing. A modern breakthrough, and the world was changed forever.

So when I read this book, I was immersed in the possibility that something like this was on the horizon, that virtual technology lay in the not-too-distant f
Jul 31, 2015 Andrew rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Read this a long time ago. I remember likig it at the time, sort of a fore runner to Ready Player One. Lots of Video game references and alternate realities of the main character. i especially liked that the main characters are flawed not only in character. The diabetic falls in love with a paraplegic and are attacked by a social isolationist.

Good read.
Apr 20, 2014 C rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Two people fall for each other in an MMO.

That's about all that was memorable about it, other than Anthony imagined a chair that provides all kinds of sensory stimulus (stimuli?). I'm sure some lonely gamers will look forward to that invention..
Jul 31, 2015 Jared rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
A little bit offensive at points. Could do without all of the explicit language and sexuality. But overall, a very good story. I've read it a few times now, and the concept is still good. It never loses its charm.
Sep 30, 2015 Honeybadger rated it liked it
I had long forgotten about reading this one. It's Piers Anthony, so good but not great. Perfect for young (nerdish) teens, which was me at the time. A much quicker version of Tad William's - Otherland series.
Jan 18, 2010 Jen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Perhaps it suffered from being read just after Spider Robinson's "Very Bad Deaths", but this book just felt sort of flat to me. Not Anthony's best work, by far. The plot was interesting, the pace was fine (although I think he achieved the never-stopping action imperfectly; yes, it never stops, but after a while it felt redundant rather than suspenseful). The characters were even fairly likable, but I didn't believe in them and the villain didn't strike me as a threat at all. It felt...hollow, so ...more
Jeffery Chatham
Aug 29, 2016 Jeffery Chatham rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A pretty solid read, about what I've come to expect from Piers Anthony, but it did drag from time to time. Some of the sections on diabetes were dull. I did enjoy it otherwise and would recommend it.
Fifteen-year-old me really liked this book! I haven't read it since then, though, so I'm not sure if it holds up. (It *IS* Piers Anthony....)
Dec 17, 2013 Jim rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A typical Piers Anthony book with characters that think and act as they do in most every other Piers Anthony book.

Given the year written, he does a very nice job with the virtual reality aspect of the book, so much so that it probably wouldn't need to be much different if written today (sans some anachronisms like phone modems).

I was a bit taken out of the book by the seeming over-ostracization of the character with diabetes. At the time, maybe someone HIV-positive, but diabetes?

Anyway, an ok bo
Mike (the Paladin)
Probably the book by Anthony that I liked best. A little strained and such but an enjoyable read. Trapped in a virtual world unable to extract yourself due to a crazed hacker (a phreak). Interesting idea. The protagonist who's body is injured and restricted to a wheelchair but who can still be the hero in the virtual world of Killobyte is one of Anthony's better creations in my opinion...but then over all I can't be said to be an Anthony fan either. Still, some problems aside (the same ones I se ...more
Feb 22, 2012 Penny rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I wanted to like this novel because the premise of a story set in a video game appeals to me but the writing just wasn't that good. The character interaction and dialogue felt really forced. The author devotes entire chapters to depressing back-stories about why each character is playing the game but then has them act directly contrary to their implied personality. He also has a tendency to restate the things that were just said in dialog as thoughts in someone's head which makes the writing fee ...more
It has been a while since I have read this, but I remeber something about a diabetic girl who gets stuck in a virtual reality gaming world and a paraplegic man must come to her rescue before she dies.

Good concept, but poor execution. The virtual worlds were kind of boring and too much time was spent in each.

Anne K.
I remember this book being terrifying to me because the the diabetes issues that arise during the story. I'm not sure if that plot aspect would be quite as scary unless you personally had diabetes or knew someone who did (as was my case).
Oct 17, 2009 Laura rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
I love the concept of being able to physically enter a game. I read this before games such as WOW even existed, and multi-player strategy games were very limited. It was fun to imagine how much farther such things could go.
Mar 01, 2009 Gwen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is great, especially when you take into account how long ago it was written. I wish parts of this story could be real. I would pay any amount of money to enjoy the technology described.
Jan 12, 2008 Amanda rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: computer nerds, videogame nerds, nerds
Recommended to Amanda by: Will
Shelves: sci-fi
My boyfriend tried to convince me of the entertaining qualities of this book. I thought it was a little too hokey and computer-nerdish for me. Also, the diabetic & crippled cop subplots were weird.
Aug 27, 2008 Sarai rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A mystery, a love story, and a hacker thriller all in one.
It's a bit dated in it's computer terminology and it's take on the gamer/hacker culture but it's still intriguing.
Dec 17, 2012 Magda rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi, unfinished
Had read this and liked it in middle school / high school, but am not interested in rushing through to finish it before it's due at the library this time.
Dec 28, 2009 Elena rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sff
I liked this as a teenager, but this time, I couldn't get 50 pages in. The writing is awkward and boring, and the characterization is worse.
Feb 04, 2011 Me rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ingenious plot. One of Piers Anthony's best and one where it is easy to place yourelf in the main character's shoes (no pun intended!).
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Though he spent the first four years of his life in England, Piers never returned to live in his country of birth after moving to Spain and immigrated to America at age six. After graduating with a B.A. from Goddard College, he married one of his fellow students and and spent fifteen years in an assortment of professions before he began writing fiction full-time.

Piers is a self-proclaimed environm
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