Sean Randall's Reviews > Hopscotch

Hopscotch by Kevin J. Anderson
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May 08, 2009

really liked it
Read in May, 2009

There's little doubt in my mind that this is one of my best reads of the month. Anderson paints a picture of a futuristic society but the whole concept of being able to swap bodies at will is quite inspired. he handles perspective, friendship and duty admirably.

Swapportunities and e-nouncements are cool watchwords for the future, and it's a great read, following the main characters, three of which are firm friends and the forth feels for duty, more than friendship. An artist, a lost soul and an eventual murderer all have their shining moments in this compelling story of swapping bodies,all undercut with tension and drama. The intricacies of the swap - the impact of the physical versus the mental - is very well thought-out indeed. Furthermore, the ability to move from physical form to form seems to have engendered a degree of sexual openness and communal working, in some quarters, and that's great to see.

As with any society there are bad as well as good people: the modus operandi of the bureaux that seem to run everything is shoot first, ask questions later, and Anderson's favourite mantra - a fake, wooing religion - is also apparent.

yet there is hope. For all the violence, the dangers and inherent legal complications that arise from being able to move out of your own body and into someone else's, the public are painted as generally average people, going about their day-to-day business. The Computer Organic Matrix (or COM) is an ever-growing network of computers and minds, and it seems as if any day now it will do something drastic - either to depose the bureaux or else to encourage more of the mere people to join it in some harmonious gestalt. maybe that would have worked for a sequel, who knows? In any case, a shockingly insightful little book, this - fiction at its futuristic best.
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Reading Progress

05/04/2009 page 108
22.5% "great concept, body swapping. The future tech is a little samey though."

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