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3.76  ·  Rating details ·  34 ratings  ·  20 reviews
A game for the times we live - and die - in. Enter Psychotopia, a dark new dystopian novel from the author of the acclaimed Silas Quinn mysteries.

PSYCHOTOPIA, LEVEL ONE. Create your own boutique psychopath, then deceive, manipulate and be ruthless, spreading mayhem and destruction to reach the next levels.

It's the computer game for our times. After all, the amount of c
Hardcover, 240 pages
Published February 1st 2019 by Severn House Publishers
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PSYCHOTOPIA. The cover, the synopsis, the title, and the review of a friend, (Thanks, Bandit!), all prompted me to request this book from NetGalley. I'm so glad I did!

There are several threads working together in this speculative fiction story. One from the POV of a policeman. Another from a young woman recently used and used hard by a handsome rogue. And lastly, there are chapters from a video game designer, talking about the architecture of a new, interactive, virtual reality experience. Such
Jan 12, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have been a fan of R.N. Morris for a number of years, enjoying his Porfiry Petrovich series and, in particular, his Silas Quinn novels. This is a bit of a departure for him; rather than a historical mystery, we have a science fiction, dystopian novel, which is also a thriller.

The premise behind the book is that more and more people are psychopaths. Crime is rising – especially in the younger population – and, of course, people are panicked about what will happen. Dr Arbus announces that he has
Robin Bonne
Psychotopia is based on the premise that psychopaths have become a larger part of the population and are wreaking havoc. The story is told through several different points of view. One point of view is a detective, one is of a woman who was a victim of a charming psychopath, and another is a psychopathic man hiring a woman at a video game company. There are gameplay notes peppered in between that describe a video game where psychopaths roam around.

The premise for this book has everything I shou
Oct 23, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What a pleasant surprise this turned out to be. I went into this with (pun alert) virtually no expectations. Never heard of the author, who seems to specialize in series as much as I specialize in saying away from series. Don’t particularly care for gaming stories, Ready Player One is hugely overrated. Even the title is somewhat cheesy. But then...I do like dystopias. And in this story the future belongs to psychos. And it isn’t even really all that much about gaming, it provides the framework f ...more
Judy Lesley
Thank you to NetGalley and Severn House Publishing for an eGalley of this novel.

I didn't really like this book at all, in fact it disturbed me to the point of having to wait several weeks before writing this review to try to keep some unbiased perspective. The three stars is for the author having the talent to write so intriguingly that I wanted to finish the book in spite of my discomfort. It is practically required that you read the entire novel to see how the whole story ties together because
Lel Budge
Mar 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
Psychotopia will mess with your mind….

Alpha Games are creating a VR game, where you create your own Psychopath with varying degrees of disorders….you choose!..

Serial killers get more points for more kills, the longer a psychopath remains undetected the better for the gamer……

But, the real world is struggling with a rise in violence, this is becoming the norm……adults and children alike are the perpetrators and victims.

Everyone’s lives are linked to their MindPhone, MindNet and MindMessages….(sound
Mar 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I was really excited when I saw Psychotopia by R.N. Morris. A virtual reality game centered around psychopaths? Be still my beating heart! You had me at “psychopath.” I have always been interested in psychopaths, particularly how their mind works and why they do the things they do. Blame it on my Criminal Justice major in college or my fascination with serial killers. Am I little weird? Quite Possibly! Anyway, add in a virtual reality game to the storyline and R.N Morris had me salvitating to ge ...more
Birdie O
Apr 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I started reading this book with no small amount of reservation. Obviously, I chose to read it. However, having worked in the game development industry in the past and been a regular game-player, myself, I was worried that this would be a very long, fictional treatise on the horrors of playing video games and how it’s killing society. I was pleasantly surprised to find that the game itself doesn’t feature prominently in the actual storyline until about a third of the way in.

To start, the book is
Yvonne Davies
After reading the blurb, I thought I knew what the book was about. I presumed it was about a VR game, how wrong I was.
Set in a dystopian Britain, where it was predicted that psychopaths were soon to be the majority. This book tells the stories of 3 characters that are affected living in this world. Inspector Glen Parfett is an overworked Police Officer. His job was to bring in psychopaths, who he can spot just by looking at them. Working on the National Taskforce, he has his most difficult case
The Scary Reviews
This was an interesting look at what makes a person a psychopath, how they live and how they deceive us. My review is posted here ...more
Jo Stevens
Mar 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Very rarely do I find a book so disturbing that I cannot read it all at once and yet Psychotopia does exactly that. The subject matter is itself disturbing, the little girl is disturbing, and psychopathy is disturbing. Subject matter aside the book is so well written that one would think the author was a psychopath. It raises so many questions about the nature of mental illnesses. Can they and should they be held more accountable than they are? If you can't actually cure them, and their one and ...more
Cheryl M-M
Mar 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
Right! R.N. Morris needs locking in a room with no access to the outside world and no internet - his ideas are far too dangerous.

A video game based on psychopathy, one that interacts and evolves based on the pathology of someone's lack of empathy, conscience and in general what is considered the normal emotional response based on societal norms. The idea is dangerous.

I wondered, as I am sure many readers will, what the underlying message is. To establish a world with psychopaths in the control s
Rebecca Bowyer
Jan 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
Psychotopia is a modern literary journey down through the seven circles of Hell which left me feeling utterly drained.

R.N. Morris has plucked out two of society’s current anxieties (the rise of psychopaths, especially in positions of power, and the influence of online gaming on the shape of our society), combined them with new scientific knowledge (the brain is a changing organ and neural pathways can be reprogrammed) and come up with a horrifyingly plausible future dystopian scenario.

What is a
Jessica Bronder
Mar 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
In this world people have come to care for their electronics and games more so then their fellow man. This is starting to make many people feel a rise in psychopathic behaviors. This story follows three story lines in this world. A police officer, a woman abused by a psychopath, and a psychopath that is developing a machine to test for psychopathic behaviors. But all wrapped up with these threads is notes on a video game that revolves around psychopathic behaviors in which worse behaviors gets y ...more
Jessica Belmont
Mar 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Psychotopia is a Sci-Fi, Dystopian, Thriller with a unique and disturbing plot that drew me in from the first page and had me up all night reading to the end.

There are three perspectives in this book: a police officer, a woman who is used by a psychopath, and a psychopath who is hiring a woman for his company, Alpha Games. In between each chapter are notes for the virtual reality game, Psychotopia. Each chapter is vastly different, yet, in the end they are drawn together.

This book asks so many q
Caroline Venables
Mar 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
This book really makes you think.  A new game has been developed that enables the player to become a psychopath, it encourages despicable behaviour.

Society has broken down, crime is rampant.  Psychopaths now out number non psychopaths.  People take pleasure in violence, even young children are exhibiting worrying behaviour.

This book is told from different pints of view, Aimee who is seduced by a charmer and destroys her faith.  A cop who never had any faith but is battling to help restore order,
Gayle Noble
What happens in society when psychopaths begin to outnumber non-psychopaths? Is there a way to weed them out? What should happen to them once identified?

Told from several points of view, interspersed with notes about a computer game, I found it difficult to know what exactly the point of the book was. Was the computer game the root of what was happening? I'm not sure - I finished it and just felt "Meh".

TW: mention of violence and sexual crimes, depravity

Thanks to NetGalley and publishers, Sever
Josef Hernandez
May 30, 2020 rated it really liked it
Not really sure what to say but read this book. For a full review, please go to and follow me on Twitter @josenher ...more
Josiah Lau
Dec 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
Spine-chilling. And yet with all other kinds of "slippery-slope"-ish fiction, it may seem so far away but yet so close.
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Apr 10, 2019 rated it liked it
I really wanted to review this book but had serious issues with the ADE / eReader crossover. I imagine the book is great, I just couldn't do anything about it.
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R. N. Morris's most recent book is the historical novel, Fortune's Hand.

He is the author of the St Petersburg Mysteries Series featuring Porfiry Petrovich, the detective from Dostoevsky's masterpiece Crime and Punishment: A Gentle Axe, A Vengeful Longing, A Razor Wrapped in Silk and The Cleansing Flames.

He also wrote the Silas Quinn series, set in London in 1914: Summon Up The Blood, The Mannequin

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