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Everything About You

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3.50  ·  Rating details ·  111 ratings  ·  52 reviews
Think twice before you share your life online.

Freya has a new virtual assistant. It knows what she likes, knows what she wants and knows whose voice she most needs to hear: her missing sister's.

It adopts her sister's personality, recreating her through a life lived online. But this virtual version of her sister knows things it shouldn't be possible to know. It's almost as
...more
Paperback, 352 pages
Published February 28th 2019 by Orbit (first published April 26th 2018)
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3.50  · 
Rating details
 ·  111 ratings  ·  52 reviews


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Dannii Elle
I was fascinated by the concept of this book, where a virtual assistant takes on the personality of the protagonist's missing sister, but was kept at a distance by the third person narration. This is a style I have limited interaction with so found it jarring to stumble across it here.

I also found my interest wane a little when the introduction of what initially fascinated me became a background feature of the book. This was a skilful blend of the science fiction and thriller genre but I still w
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Lou
Apr 11, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am a real sucker for thrillers with a technological edge to them so when this novel appeared on NetGalley I couldn't resist! The synopsis is what drew me in initially as it sounded like my perfect cup of tea! As the world of technology advances and brands continues to flourish more and more books are using tech as inspiration for some fabulous thrillers based wholly or in part on Twitter, Facebook, the dark web, dating agencies etc. One recent title being Friend Request by Laura Marshall, a bo ...more
Liz Barnsley
Mar 03, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A clever tale this, with speculative technology that soon could be anything but speculative, intertwined with the story of one woman’s search for her missing adopted sister – and about closure and letting go.

Freya is trying out some new tech – a virtual assistant that takes it’s information and forms it’s “personality” based on information from the cloud – and the cloud has all the information anyone could possibly want. It eerily starts to take on more than one aspect of the missing girls perso
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Lou
Apr 26, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am a real sucker for thrillers with a technological edge to them so when this novel appeared on NetGalley I couldn't resist! The synopsis is what drew me in initially as it sounded like my perfect cup of tea! As the world of technology advances and brands continues to flourish more and more books are using tech as inspiration for some fabulous thrillers based wholly or in part on Twitter, Facebook, the dark web, dating agencies etc. One recent title being Friend Request by Laura Marshall, a bo ...more
Olivia
May 29, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
3.5 Stars.

I was immediately drawn to this book because of the premise. A virtual assistant taking on the personality and speaking with the voice of a dead relative. How chilling, and very Black Mirror. I can understand the appeal. You get to talk to that person as if they were still alive. Totally something I'd see myself do, and then suffer.

The problem with Everything About You is that the mystery is mediocre. The sci-fi premise is brilliant, and those aspects of the book are the ones I enjoyed
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Shalini
AI is here to stay.

The story goes thus, a digital assistant (that we love in our mobiles) is soon a reality and Freya finds hers to be in the voice of a long lost foster sister Ruby. The story starts with a routine of Freya's life, which soon goes on to take darker turns as the assistant seemed to know more than she should have known, as if she knew Ruby's whereabouts. That part was certainly chilling.

Is Ruby alive?? Was her digital footprints getting uploaded and hence picked up by the Digital
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David Harris
Apr 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm grateful to the publisher for an advance copy of this book.

In a future London (perhaps 20-30 years from now, some time after a year of riots which have left whole districts derelict) 22 year old Freya survives a dead-end job in an IKEA-like furniture barn. At the start of the story she's selling actual, physical furniture, but there's an air of threat over the job as warehouse space is being converted for housing and the sales soon become virtual, supported by AI powered assistants. All that
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Jannelies
Since I love all things technological and SF... I was very disappointed by this book. The idea is fine and yes, it attracted me too because of the Dark Mirror mentioned in the blurb.
However, it started slow and became even slower. The main character is absolutely boring and not sympthatetic and halfway the book I decided to stop reading because the whole story was going nowhere, and became more complicated at the same time.
I don't like main characters that, finding themselves in an unhappy posi
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Charlie
Apr 30, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I got a chance to read this book thank's to Netgalley.
This thriller came out just a couple days ago and I hope it will get the success it deserves !!

I dived into the book not really knowing what to expect. I read a lot of thrillers but none of them are set in a futuristic, tech crazy version of our world and I am not a huge science fiction fan. But Oh what a pleasant surprise this story was.

Freya is a young woman unable to live her life to the fullest as she is haunted by the memory of her fos
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Kath
Apr 03, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am a bit new to this genre so I am still trying to find my feet with what I like and dislike and, on the whole, I liked this book very much. Set in the near future, technology has moved on enough so that people rely more and more on virtual assistants. Mostly they are generic AIs but more and more they are being customised for users and can be made up from people they know, created from their own online lives. In fact, it has become necessary for you to opt out if you don't want your personali ...more
Sana
'Is there some overarching power of the smartface that gives everyone what they want, by hook or by crook?'

So Everything About You is definitely quite similar to an episode of Black Mirror in the way that it's about the dangers of living inside an echo chamber and how virtual assistants are basically nightmare fuel for someone who's already emotionally vulnerable. Yet it's somehow lacking.

The world-building of Everything About You is quite well-executed as the world has advanced to the point tha
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Paul
May 04, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I’m sure many of you have a digital assistant in your home. It doesn’t matter if you use Siri or Cortana, Google or Alexa it’s all still a bit of a novelty isn’t it? Flash forward five or ten years from now, and it will be commonplace. We’ll all have our own assistants that are with us twenty-four seven. A virtual presence that knows you better than you know yourself and caters for you every whim. Sounds blissful doesn’t it? Heather Child’s debut novel, Everything About You, uses this as a jumpi ...more
Zoë ☆
Apr 26, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebook, netgalley
This book wasn't for me, unfortunately.

I really wanted to like this book and I was really interested because the concept sounded so cool!
But I found that the 'voice' in which the story was told was really confusing, maybe the first-person would have been better for me.
After a while I couldn't focus anymore on the story when I was reading it, I don't really know why, I can't place it. Maybe I should try reading this again another time.

I do think that it will be a good book to read if you like t
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Helen
I loved the idea behind the story and the way that it takes the tech we have today and extrapolates it all just that little bit into what we might have tomorrow!

It made it feel very realistic and relatable, like a world I'm excited to see. If anyone remembers Tomorrow's World on the BBC, it made me think of that a lot while I was reading it (spaghetti plants aside).

Part of the story is that Freya is struggling to find her own space in the world and I get that, it just felt like she didn't under
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Leo Robertson
Not very intriguing short story dragged out way beyond its due.

Wasn't even about what I thought it was about—when it cared to be about anything at all.

Nah.

This book was given to me by me because I found it in a sale :)
MRIDULA
|3.5 stars|

I am not a huge fan of technology, but the whole virtual assistant thing made me ask for this book. When you think about it, it can really be a wonderful thriller, with a hidden person feeding information etc.
Freya is thrilled about her new virtual assistant, a bot who knows everything about her, the information being fed via a cloud. Freya has one weakness- her dead sister. As the virtual assistant slowly turns herself into Freya’s dead sister, Freya starts to believe that her sister
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Julie Middleton
Apr 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A strikingly visual book that really stimulates the imagination. It's fast paced and does that smart thing that when you finish a chapter you just have to move to the next. It's clever, inventive, thought proviking and scary. Its not the type of book I usually read and I enjoyed it all the more for it. A fantastic debut work of fiction.
Clair
Book review will be added once other bookclub members finished reading.
Renata Riva
Dec 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: speculative
Twenty-two-year-old Freya has no career prospect and is haunted by the disappearance, occurred eight years earlier, of her foster sister Ruby. When given a personal assistant who can assume different personalities based on data available on the internet, Freya discovers that one of these personalities belongs to Ruby. Could Freya use what the assistant knows to find out what happened to her sister?

The story takes place in the near-future, in a London dominated by smart technology. It is a very b
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Sheri
Jun 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
For Freya, a young woman in her early twenties living in a near-future London, life isn’t going that well - her flatmate/ex-boyfriend has all but disappeared into an alarming world of virtual porn, and her job at a furniture store has been largely replaced by a hologram. And she’s still haunted by the disappearance - and presumed death - eight years earlier of her foster sister, Ruby.

When Freya acquires a smartface - a virtual assistant which can take on the personality of a real person, using t
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Emma Timson
Jun 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Isn’t it great when your Smart phone reminds you that your alarm for work is turned off? Or, have you ever impressed your friends by asking your Echo Dot to turn on your home lights and request your guests’ favourite song on the speakers? Imagine if your Smart Phone began to help with your life a bit more. Ordering your weekly shopping; reminding you of your weekly fitness regime or, even booking a blind date for you. The last one crosses a line, I feel. This novel reminds us of that line and ho ...more
Georgina Davies
Jun 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a timely, prescient book that is well written and thought provoking. The idea that technology will be used to manage and manipulate every aspect of our reality runs throughout the story, from a virtual assistant assimilating the identity of a missing person, to glasses that cover-up unpleasant sights. The world that Child creates in is entirely plausible and cleverly constructed. It's full of inventive and sometimes frightening ideas that may well come true in the not too distant future. ...more
Cynthia
Jul 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I can honestly say this book was a real page-turner, I was intrigued to see where the characters would end up and how the mystery would develop. I really enjoyed the descriptions of the imaginative tech in Child's version of the not-too-distant future; some made me laugh, some made me feel uneasy in how easily they could be upgraded versions of products around today - convenience definitely comes at a cost..!

I'd recommend reading to enjoy an interesting and refreshing story while simultaneously
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Rachael
Jul 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a wonderful, compelling read. The setting of the book is very clever and so terrifyingly relevant to the way we live and use technology - today and in the near future. For me however it is the journey that the main character goes on and the descriptions the author uses to bring all her experiences to life that i enjoyed the most. Would recommend - and not just for science-fi/ fantasy fans.
Amy Chiles
This review originally appeared on my blog On a Crafty Adventure

Every Thing About You is a debut novel by Heather Child. Touted as a sort of Black Mirror mixed with Gone Girl, this a slightly futuristic thriller that is eerily plausible if technology continues as we know it.

Freya is working a deadbeat job where she fears she will be replaced by sales robots who can mine data about a customer and tailor the service to their needs. This is a future where virtual reality is commonplace and used for
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miss.mesmerized mesmerized
21-year-old Freya is not very happy with her life as it is: she is still living together with her ex-boyfriend Julian, her job just serves to earn money but is not actually promising a career and she still misses Judy who first was a friend and then moved in with Freya and her mother and became something like a real sister. When Julian is not interested in the latest technological device from his father, Freya accepts to use the high-tech personal assistant. Since she is still longing for Ruby w ...more
Michelle
Probably just pushing towards 3.5 stars.

When Freya's new virtual assistant begins to take on the personality of her long missing (presumed dead) sister and appears to act with new information, could it mean her sister is actually still alive?

'Everything About You' premise is intriguing and conjures up some very real "what ifs" considering the usage of smartphones and social media now, as well as the developments in AI and worries about our data being stored online.

The sense of technology and th
...more
Kim
Apr 30, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Bursting with tech, of the not too distant futuristic possibility, Everything About You did not disappoint. Freya has a virtual assistant who can manage every aspect of her life but the personality it wears is that of her long missing adopted sister, Ruby. The mystery element of what happened to Ruby on that long ago day haunts Freya. Without really realising it, she quests to find answers in an unorthodox way whilst finding herself in the process.

The strength of this novel rests in the tech. I
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Ali Bacon
May 22, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Everything About You takes as its back-drop a near future in which data (which we hear about so much right now) is the driver for - well, everything. I found this entertainingly inventive - your toothbrush makes your dental appointment, your shower stops running when you're clean - as well as distinctly scary in the scenes where an entire personality as well as a personal history can be learned by and from the Cloud. (Go check those privacy settings!) But again this is a strongly personal story ...more
Niki Deepak
May 17, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018
Everything About You takes place in a parallel world where technology has seeped into every aspect of life. I'm not a huge scifi fan but I really liked the way this world was set up. Everything had been thought of (and sometimes even answered before I had time to question it). I also liked how the storytelling flashbacked to the past to explore more of the context.
The only thing is, the mystery, the excitement I had been looking forward to was just not there. It's a very passive book. And not o
...more
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Heather Child is a communications professional whose work on digital marketing has brought her into close contact with the cutting-edge automation and personalisation technologies that herald the 'big data' age. EVERYTHING ABOUT YOU is her debut novel.