This is my first experience with an audiobook (I've generally been avoiding obtaining them, but this was part of a bundle), so I'm not sure how much tThis is my first experience with an audiobook (I've generally been avoiding obtaining them, but this was part of a bundle), so I'm not sure how much the narrator affected my thoughts on his short story.
It's pretty short, and I'll state right out that I have absolutely no clue as to what the preceding books were about. I like to think that this is a good test of whether a short story can stand on its own. Going by this one, I'd say it is, because it doesn't really rely on what's happened before, although there are a couple of clues; just enough to help build their characters. Which isn't to say there's a lot of it.
Marcus and Ange are pretty shallow as characters go. It's partially due to the length of the story, but I prefer to think that it's because despite being protagonists, they aren't the subject of the story - they're the medium rather. I guess that's why the author gave Marcus the ability to make really great coffee? To give a little depth? Same with the parent connections, they felt like fillers.
So what's the subject of the story? It felt like it was teenage angst and anti-establishment. This story was overly one-sided without first establishing a strong enough reason for it; thus the confrontation felt more like being for the sake of it - glorifying the reasons for it, and even looking up Wikipedia for "liquid democracy". Perhaps I'm from a totally different culture or the wrong age group, but that's my impression of it.
The meat of it is about outsmarting police crowd control measures with technology, hackers, and even throwing in mentions of open source software. It's a geeky fantasy, and on some levels, I enjoyed that, but it felt a tad too much, even if this is supposed to be some sort of slightly futuristic society - it's pretty modern-day mostly, futuristic only when convenient to be. I'm not very sure, but I thought I heard the narrator refer to jailbroken Android phones... :/ But anyway, that ending scene was extremely cringe-worthy. Or maybe I'm just old. (view spoiler)[I can't imagine any woman (or teenage girl) finding that even remotely romantic. It sort of ties in with my thoughts about the story glorifying and beautifying acts of dissension (whether it's justified or not is not my point). (hide spoiler)]["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
I didn't realise that this was a debut novel until i finished it and started reading reviews. That made this book pretty impressive, as i thoroughly eI didn't realise that this was a debut novel until i finished it and started reading reviews. That made this book pretty impressive, as i thoroughly enjoyed. The author tells a noir tale in a science fiction setting where mankind has figured how to cheat death by "sleeving" one's consciousness into bodies, real or synthetic. As long as you can accept that premise without trying to find flaws with that idea, this will be the "magic" of this book - where it truly shines - the world-building.
Throughout the story, we get glimpses of this world (or worlds as the case may be) that's being unfolded slowly. How humanity has spread, how humanity's brutality and cruelty has reared itself again and again. How advanced mankind has become, yet doing the same things to each other as we're doing now. I found that the most interesting bit is not the thought-provoking idea of "resleeving", but rather the implications surrounding it. The author injects that throughout the story; showing you the practical applications of such a technology, and at the same time shines a little light on the morality of it.
The protagonist is an anti-hero that I readily got into and liked, a specially trained war veteran thrust into the midst of a conspiracy, and then determined that he didn't like it. It paints a gritty noir setting, complete with violence and sexual themes, but in sometimes rather imaginative futuristic flair.
If i have to dislike something, I guess there parts in the book that feels like it could be trimmed or cut as it detracts from the main plot. But I didn't mind because I really enjoy good world-building. Another less satisfactory bit is how the story was wrapped up. It's not that it left loose ends - i don't think it did - it's just that the last chapter and the epilogue felt rather rushed. After all the careful plot building and conspiracy unraveling, I guess it could've been better.
On the whole, this was a very enjoyable book for me and sent me into thought-provoking discussions of the ideas in this book....more
This anthology of multiple short stories set in the world of Shadowrun is a good compilation of stories. The way the various authors weaved each otherThis anthology of multiple short stories set in the world of Shadowrun is a good compilation of stories. The way the various authors weaved each other's tales into their one was very well done. The setting really comes alive....more