I don’t even know what to say about this book. It’s the third book set partly in an internet RPG that I’ve read this year, which is a little wild (theI don’t even know what to say about this book. It’s the third book set partly in an internet RPG that I’ve read this year, which is a little wild (the other two being Reamde and Ready Player One). Nothing on this topic before, and now three? Is the universe trying to tell me something?
This one was even more of a hot mess than Reamde. It was in second person present (“you see the apple and pick it up…”) which could technically work, but it's messy and unnecessary, especially with multiple POV characters.
I appreciate that it is set in Edinburgh (go Scotland!) and Stross made the interesting choice of making Scotland become independent from the UK in his near-future world. That is actually something I wish had been explored more, instead of the crazy virtual reality bank heist shenanigans that went on (that may sound entertaining, but it really wasn't).
The characters were very flat, maybe because they all were written in second person present. It's hard to develop anyone when it's hard to tell them apart (and when I didn't even realize there was more than one narrator for several chapters - I just thought the one girl had two jobs). ...more