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The Doubt Factory

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3.37  ·  Rating details ·  1,703 ratings  ·  367 reviews
A YA thriller about a teenage girl who discovers that her father is at the helm of an organization providing dangerous false messaging to society about global warming and other issues.
Hardcover, 496 pages
Published October 14th 2014
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Asteropê There are 2 Kindle editions listed:
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/2...
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/2...
And no doubt it'll be available…more
There are 2 Kindle editions listed:
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/2...
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/2...
And no doubt it'll be available via B&N, KOBO and other ebook places as well. (less)

Community Reviews

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Pamela
One of the many doubts raised by The Doubt Factory is whether Paolo Bacigalupi actually wrote this. I've read Ship Breaker (loved it!) and The Drowned Cities (liked it, with reservations), and both books had excellent prose, well-drawn characters, and a wonderfully seamy, gritty feel that perfectly suited the setting. I had been hoping he'd write another novel set in that post-apocalyptic world, but instead I got The Doubt Factory.

I went into The Doubt Factory knowing it was a Book with an Agend
...more
Patrick
Dec 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I wish every kid in the US had to read this before they graduated high school.
Tatiana
Apr 14, 2012 marked it as abandoned  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014, ya
I don't think I care to finish this. It is rather boring so far and plagued by an i-am-hot-for-my-criminal-stalker romance plot. Didn't expect that from Bacigalupi. Maybe it gets better and maybe I will try it again some other time.
Althea Ann
Jul 26, 2014 rated it liked it
Recommended for fans of Cory Doctorow's YA fiction.

The theme and feel here seriously reminded me more of Doctorow than Bacigalupi. Now, I quite like Doctorow, so that's no insult. It's got hackers, activists, and thoughts on information (and disinformation).

But I have to admit - this just wasn't as good as I expected. I've absolutely loved pretty much everything else Bacigalupi has published, so I had very high expectations.

Here, we've got Alix, a rich, white, privileged private school kid. She
...more
Brendan
Aug 08, 2014 rated it did not like it
Having read both Ship Breaker and Pump Six, both of which I admired, respected, and enjoyed, I am a huge fan of Paolo Bacigalupi's work, and I was thrilled to get a chance to read an e-arc of this one.

Because I like his other work so much, I had high expectations. And I want to be kind. So here's the kind version: a disappointing misfire from one of SF's most talented writers. What could have been like a really good teen version of Leverage ultimately doesn't work as a thriller.

But I invested a
...more
Whitley Birks
Oct 11, 2014 marked it as dnf
Shelves: 2014
See more reviews on my blog.

I only got to about the 20% mark, but it's taken me over a week to get there. There is no rating, since I only rate books after 50% or more.

I just...wasn't thrilled by this thriller. It had stuff that could have been interesting, and it did a fair job of establishing a tone of "something isn't right" from the start, but the delivery was quite bland and didn't spark my interest. I think the problem was the main character, Alix, and her focus on how attracted she is to
...more
Munro's Kids
Jun 16, 2014 rated it liked it
I absolutely loved Drowned Cities and Ship Breaker by Bacigalupi, so I was very excited to hear he had a new YA book coming this fall. And while there were many strengths to The Doubt Factory, it didn't blow me away like his previous dystopias.

The Doubt Factory is a very educational, well-researched book that has some good characters and a decent plot. But even if you agree with his message (which I do), it is so prevalent that it becomes a little off-putting. As readers we often like our books
...more
Denise Weintraut
Jul 13, 2014 rated it really liked it
I genuinely enjoyed this book filled with intrigue and conspiracy theories! Yes, I received an ARC at BEA, but I think I would have picked it up anyway. This is an unusual tale in the YA world: a story of the back door peddling that works to keep the corporate wheels of profit turning.

It starts with a moderately rich teenage girl who witnesses an unusual event at her private, upscale high school. Before she knows it, she has been drawn into a web of subterfuge and conniving... All to undo the s
...more
Ian Wood
Aug 04, 2014 rated it did not like it
This is the complete review as it appears at my blog dedicated to reading, writing (no 'rithmatic!), movies, & TV. Blog reviews often contain links which are not reproduced here, nor will updates or modifications to the blog review be replicated here. Graphic and children's novels reviewed on the blog will generally have some images from the book's interior, which are not reproduced here.

Note that I don't really do stars. To me a novel is either worth reading or it isn't. I can't rate a nove
...more
C.J. Sarcasm & Lemons
Read more at Sarcasm & Lemons


the basics
The Doubt Conspiracy is, in my mind, the perfect concept subverted by ham-fisted politics, thin plotting, and a faceless cast. The first half is arguably the most interesting, with the strange attacks on Alix's school and a mysterious stalker. Then it's all ruined because of course he has a magnetism that she can't resist. Pro tip: Stalkers aren't good boyfriends. Alix's fascination leads her into the headquarters of 2.0, a gang of teenagers set on ave
...more
Rob
...What we are left with is a suspenseful novel with occasionally very good characterization. It's a novel with an important message, one that, despite the mechanism being clear for anyone willing to connect the dots, doesn't get nearly enough attention. I enjoyed reading it but after finishing The Doubt Factory it still left me with the feeling that the novel made it too easy to dismiss it as a conspiracy theory. It's unfair to expect a work of fiction to come up with the answer to one of the m ...more
Bibliotropic
Jul 21, 2014 rated it really liked it
(Full review here: http://bibliotropic.net/2014/10/01/th...)

This is the kind of book that will encourage readers not to charge forward without a plan, but to do the research and to really understand what it is that they’re fighting for and what the costs can be. It presents activism and truth in shades of grey, and gives the reader an all-to-plausible scenario in which the truth can destroy lives, literally and figuratively. It hits you right in the heart and mind and leaves an imprint long afte
...more
Belinda Lewis
Oct 14, 2014 rated it did not like it
Simply talking about an important social issue does not a good novel make. Unlikely plot, poor and sometimes downright sloppy writing and overall a really dull and boring read. Probably wouldn't have bothered to finish it if I hadn't been trapped on a plane. I've loved all of Paolo Bacigalupi's other work - so have no idea what went wrong here.
Sarah Littman
I want to buy this for all the young people in my life so we can talk about it after they've read it.
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
Chapters read: 8

I wasn't really feeling The Doubt Factory to begin with. After putting it down for the weekend, I wasn't really looking forward to picking it back up again. The chapter that I read gave me additional trepidation. Then I saw that April had reviewed it and I checked with her on whether I would like it. The answer was no.

Here's my issue with the doubt factory and it all comes down to the romance:

"Meeting" One: Moses punches a school administrator while Alix looks on through the clas
...more
Elisabeth Lord
Mar 27, 2015 rated it really liked it
"My family's deaths aren't on you. The next one who dies though? That is on you. Because now you know something is wrong, and you're not doing anything about it."
'The Doubt Factory' by Paolo Bacigalupi is a unique and riveting YA novel full of action and plot twists. It begins with Alix, a teenage girl from a wealthy background, being targeted by a mysterious boy from an activist group known as 2.0. But Alix soon learns that it's not her 2.0 are after. It's her father, a man Alix is forced
...more
Andrea McDowell
Dec 26, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction
This was just not up to Bacigalupi's usual standards for YA.

The characters felt flat all the way through. It was more like Pilgrim's Progress for Radicals than a novel--you had your Status Quo, your Righteous Truth, your Innocent Orphan, and so on. They would speechify at each other, there would be a not-very-intersting action scene, and then they would speechify some more. Info-dumps all over the place.

This needed to be more fleshed out with a few more revisions, to turn the stereotypes into c
...more
paula
Aug 21, 2014 rated it it was amazing
All I have to say is FUCK YEAH BACIGALUPI. Exactly THREE people are writing subversive, idea-packed, politically activated thrillers for teens right now, and they are Alex London, Cory Doctorow, and Paolo "Read the Label" Bacigalupi. Bonus points to Sandy and to Paolo for misting their compelling novels of ideas with little wafts of realistic romance and friendship. Rock on, brothers.
Ben Babcock
We really might have hit some kind of Singularity, because this novel was published in 2014, and I am having a hard time caring not because it’s bad but just because certain elements of what’s happening right now seem like they’re out of the worst-conceived conspiracy theories ever. The Doubt Factory is an attempt by Paolo Bacigalupi to distill the dangerous, pay-to-play nature of many industries into a thriller for young adults. He examines the role that media and marketing play in sowing doubt ...more
Kat  Hooper
Sep 30, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: audiobook
Originally posted at Fantasy Literature: http://www.fantasyliterature.com/revi...

Paolo Bacigalupi’s most recent stand-alone novel is a modern day young adult thriller. It’s about a rich girl named Alix who attends an elite highschool (uh oh, it’s already starting off wrong for me) who meets a mysterious sexy bad boy (oh gosh) who leads a diverse gang of socially conscious teenage vandals (ugh) who hope to change the world by taking down a public relations company that works for industries like B
...more
Eli
The road trip through a story is never quite smooth. There are ups and downs, feels and sometimes plotholes.

Plot holes. THIS STORY HAS THEM.

And many other things. You know, when I was reading this book I went into it thinking SHIP BREAKER or THE DROWNED CITIES (Bacigalupi's other books). Both SHIP BREAKER and THE DROWNED CITIES were both awesome books with great plot, unique premise and characters, good writing and more. Bacigalupi has a very unique and entertaining voice that brings life to the
...more
Annette
Nov 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The Doubt Factory is an exciting page turner, that also gets you thinking about our legal system and how it can be manipulated.

Alix leads a pretty normal life, for a rich teenager. She attends a private school, has some friends, and her home life is pretty normal even though her father is a work-a-holic.

Things fall apart when Alix realizes she is the target of a stalker. Strange things happen at school, but the same kid keeps appearing, and Alix is confused. All he says is, "ask your dad -- he k
...more
Nicholas Karpuk
Mar 12, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This experience, along with his zombie baseball book, have given me a reason to be cautious about Bacigalupi books going forward. From now on, before renting or purchasing his books, I'm going to have to check the description to see if it takes place in present day.

I loved The Windup Girl, the Shipbreaker books, and the Water Knife. Part of what worked for me in those books was the excellent but not excessive world-building, the high-stakes, and the pacing. Sadly, in both this and Zombie Basebal
...more
Cecily Kyle
Oct 19, 2016 rated it it was ok
Shelves: wobble
I wanted to like this book as it hits a lot of important issues, However, it is way too conspiracy theory to me. Not that I don't think there is probably merit to a lot of claims out there of big companies doing exactly what is described. Reading it in a book just didn't keep me interested. Afterall, there isn't much I can do about it reading a fictional novel.
I understand that knowledge is power and all that, but not exactly my idea of leisure reading...
Meh
Jessica Woodbury
Apr 05, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: kindle, ya, crime-mystery
This is the kind of YA that requires a healthy suspension of disbelief to get anywhere. I was totally okay with that until the climax, when my brain kept getting the better of me and nitpicking. Which is a shame, because I liked this book, liked the weird central relationship between Moses and Alix, liked Alix's internal dilemma about her father. A strong concept, just wish the denouement worked a bit better and lived up to the rest of the book.
Mal Warwick
Aug 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
Let's start with a confession. I've been a fan of Paolo Bacigalupi's science fiction ever since reading The Windup Girl, which I regard as one of the best sci-fi novels I've ever read. The future scenario the author portrays is compelling and strikingly imaginative, and I've found much the same evidence of creativity in his other science fiction novels. So I turned to another of Bacigalupi's books, The Doubt Factory, expecting more of the same. It's not. This one, set in the United States today, ...more
Allan Dyen-Shapiro
Apr 16, 2015 rated it really liked it
I was very surprised at the number of negative reviews of this book on Goodreads. I liked it. But then again, I never read YA: I read it only because I think Bacigalupi is such an excellent writer. And he breaks the rules of YA--multiple points of view, some scenes from the POV of adults--making things more readable by at least this adult.

Some of the criticism levied by others: no smart girl would ever be attracted to a dangerous guy. Uh, I'm a high school teacher. Not buying that one. It happe
...more
Courtney
Dec 29, 2014 rated it it was ok
One day, Alix is sitting in her classroom at the elite Seitz Academy and gazing out the window. She spots a boy who doesn't look like he belongs at Seitz outside of the building. The principal walks up to him, presumably to move him along and the mystery boy punches him before casually strolling off. The next day, Alix arrives at school only to discover that a bomb squad is getting ready to do their bomb squad thing in one of the campus buildings. Instead of a bomb, however, an elaborate series ...more
Jordan
Jun 15, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The prologue of Paulo Bacigalupi’s The Doubt Factory gave me goosebumps. It’s so well written, and he leaves you with an incredible visual. It excited me to read the book -- and as I did, it left me wanting so much more than what I got.

For how careful and thoughtout the prologue was, it felt like the actual novel was written without much planning or editing, and instead, just written off the cuff in a flurry of inspiration over the course of a night. His Zombie Baseball Beatdown revolved around
...more
Tessa Barker
Feb 14, 2015 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
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Paolo Bacigalupi is an award-winning author of novels for adults and young people.

His debut novel THE WINDUP GIRL was named by TIME Magazine as one of the ten best novels of 2009, and also won the Hugo, Nebula, Locus, Compton Crook, and John W. Campbell Memorial Awards. Internationally, it has won the Seiun Award (Japan), The Ignotus Award (Spain), The Kurd-Laßwitz-Preis (Germany), and the Grand
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“If you wanted to look at evil, it was just a bunch of suits and ties, a bunch of cubicles and computers, the quiet whirring of commerce. Evil wasn't anything. It was just business as usual.” 2 likes
“Whenever I think I’m cynical, I find out I’m nowhere near cynical enough.” 1 likes
More quotes…