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The Future Is Yours

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Two best friends create a computer that can predict the future. But what they can’t predict is how it will tear their friendship—and society—apart.

If you had the chance to look one year into the future, would you?

For Ben Boyce and Adhi Chaudry, the answer is unequivocally yes. And they’re betting everything that you’ll say yes, too. Welcome to The Future: a computer that connects to the internet one year from now, so you can see who you’ll be dating, where you’ll be working, even whether or not you’ll be alive in the year to come. By forming a startup to deliver this revolutionary technology to the world, Ben and Adhi have made their wildest, most impossible dream a reality. Once Silicon Valley outsiders, they’re now its hottest commodity.

The device can predict everything perfectly—from stock market spikes and sports scores to political scandals and corporate takeovers—allowing them to chase down success and fame while staying one step ahead of the competition. But the future their device foretells is not the bright one they imagined.

Ambition. Greed. Jealousy. And, perhaps, an apocalypse. The question is . . . can they stop it?

Told through emails, texts, transcripts, and blog posts, this bleeding-edge tech thriller chronicles the costs of innovation and asks how far you’d go to protect the ones you love—even from themselves.

352 pages, Hardcover

First published February 9, 2021

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Dan Frey

4 books57 followers

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 429 reviews
Profile Image for MarilynW.
1,110 reviews2,796 followers
February 21, 2021
The Future Is Yours by Dan Frey 

 Ben Boyce and Adhi Chaudry have been friends since their first days in college. I never played too many of those old text based computer games but this story reminded me of them, in a way. It's told entirely through emails, texts, blogs, and transcripts, with newspaper articles from the future scattered throughout. Even though it's science fiction it came off as more of a character study with a "make up your own ending" surprise at the end. I do not like to make up my own ending, so even though I was interested in the maybe world ending invention of Ben and Adhi, I was disappointed that the story didn't feel finished to me. 

Ben Boyce is selfish, devious, after fame and fortune, hell bent on selling something to make his name in the world. I think he'd be happy selling cyanide laced pacifiers to babies if it would give him the major kudos he wants. His friend, Adhi, is a mentally ill genius and better off left alone than drawn into Ben's super sales pitched gimmicks. But Adhi has the brains (and some data stolen from Google) to devise a machine that can go into the future and read computers, thus giving the present day person knowledge of what is going to happen a year in the future. Ben sees the potential for billions of dollars if they can harness this ability and sell it to the everyday man and woman. He justifies this all by claiming the responsibility of using future knowledge falls on the shoulders of the people that buy their device.

As we watch all of this play out before us, the dysfunctional relationship between Ben and Adhi seems to drive the story. I don't really understand the tech of the invention and I'm not sure it's explained well enough for me to understand it. Then we come to the ending, the question of whether  Ben and Adhi can pull back what they have unleashed to prevent the world from destroying itself. And that's an ending you have to make up for yourself because that ending hasn't been written. I enjoyed the presentation of the story but I prefer not to have to make up my own ending. 

Publication: February 9th 2021

Thank you to Random House Publishing Group-Ballantine/Del Rey and NetGalley for this ARC.
Profile Image for Nilufer Ozmekik.
2,198 reviews40.7k followers
January 22, 2021
There is too much Ready Player One vibes in this book, am I wrong?

Just like Haliday and Sorrento’s entrepreneurship to create something unique to rock the world, Ben and Adhi leave their jobs to build a business from scratch by providing a groundbreaking device for the usage of consumers all around the world. And of course all those cultural references were mentioned have such resemblances with the same book.

This wasn’t a unique or original read. But it was still gripping, exciting, balanced paced story keep you in your toes. As you may imagine after seeing the dark side of machine they created, Ben and Adhi have to make a decision because the monster they created can drag the entire universe to a vicious apocalyptic destruction. But they already hate each other’s guts because greed, jealousy already destroyed what has left from their partnership! Will they unite for a greater purpose and let the bygones be bygones or will they fight against each other which may destruct the human beings’ entire future?

It was one of my fastest readings! The story doesn’t bring something unconventional, extraordinary to the table. It’s a little predictable. You can expect how the story will improve and conclude from the beginning.
But it was still promising, entertaining, above the average kind of moving experience. I went back and forth between 3 and 4 stars and I finally rounded up 3.5 stars to 4!

Special thanks to NetGalley and Random House Publishing/ Ballantine/ Del Rey for sharing this entertaining arc with me in exchange my honest review.
Profile Image for Blaine.
747 reviews607 followers
November 6, 2020
So an antisocial introvert doing everything in his power to avoid the world … may have created a technology that will end up destroying it? Interesting. I have no further questions.
If given the chance, I will always open Pandora’s box.
Thanks to NetGalley and Random House Publishing Group - Ballantine for sending me an ARC of The Future Is Yours in exchange for an honest review.

I’m always ready to read another time travel story. Ben Boyce and Adhi Chaudry have invented a quantum computer that can connect to the internet one year from now. Part of the story is traditional science fiction about the device itself and the potentially dangerous effects this technology might have on the world at large. Once you know what will happen in the future, do you have the free will to change that future? And why have some of the future reports started to change? This portion of the novel reminded me of the awesomely bad Ben Affleck|Uma Thurman movie Paycheck.

Beyond the more traditional themes and plot lines, The Future Is Yours focuses a surprising amount on other areas, such as how the two of main characters navigate Silicon Valley and the world of venture capitalists to try to bring their product to market. And the entire novel is told exclusively through written records—texts, e-mails, blog posts, and records of Congressional testimony— which requires the reader to sometimes have to read between the lines, ultimately uncertain about what truly happened between characters in a realistic way. But most of all, the novel is about these two men—Ben the ambitious, brash dreamer with the head for business, and Adhi the somewhere-on-the-spectrum genius programmer—and how their discovery changes each of them and their relationship.

The Future Is Yours is a fresh take on a time travel story, and is all the more interesting for being an epistolary novel with an open ending. It’s a fun, fast read. Recommended.
Profile Image for Bridgett.
Author 19 books423 followers
January 9, 2021
If given the chance, I will always open Pandora’s box.

There are things I really liked about this novel...and just as many things I didn't care for.

What I enjoyed:
1. The structure of the book is pretty freaking cool. It's written entirely in an archival, historical fashion - emails, texts, Tweets, blog posts, newspaper articles, government documents, and a variety of other multi-media. It makes for a very quick, addictive read. I read this in about three hours total.

2. Although not particularly ground-breaking, I still thought the plot was fascinating.

3. The two main characters were very flawed, but they also felt very real to me.

What I didn't enjoy:
1. I wish the story had focused more on the technology, and how it affected the world and its inhabitants...instead of devolving into petty bickering and affairs. It felt like a lost opportunity - as though it went from a sci-fi novel to domestic fiction.

2. There were small areas I just had to skim because the science was so far over my head, I think my eyes crossed.

Overall, I think most people will enjoy this book, even if sci-fi isn't their preferred genre. It's fun, plain and simple.

Available February 9, 2021
3.5 stars rounded down

Many thanks to NetGalley and Ballantine for my review copy.
Profile Image for Kemper.
1,390 reviews6,819 followers
January 17, 2021
I received a free advance copy of this from NetGalley for review.

Imagine if you could see what was in the news a year from now? Considering how the last year is gone, I’d guess it would be more than any sane person could bear.

Adhi Chaudry and Ben Boyce became friends in college even though they couldn’t be more different. Adhi is an introvert and a brilliant computer engineer. Ben is a charismatic salesman type who dreams of making it big. When Adhi develops a theory that would use quantum computing to enable a PC to show data from one year in the future, Ben immediately sees it is an opportunity to start a company that will make Apple and Amazon look like small potatoes. In fact, they even get confirmation that this is what they will do once Adhi gets the machine working and they look ahead a year to see that their corporation, The Future, has made them rich even before they start selling everyone their own machine. There are troubling aspects to the technology, but with the knowledge of what they will do in hand, Ben and Adhi press on even as problems pile up and begin to take a toll on their friendship.

There’s a lot I liked about this clever sci-fi book, and one of the best things was that it's epistolary novel told in texts, emails, and transcripts that bounce around from Ben’s testimony told in front of a congressional hearing just before The Future starts selling the machines to the public to flashbacks about how it all came about. It’s not just a clever gimmick either because there’s actually a reason why it’s told this way that becomes clear late in the book.

The idea of the glimpsing ahead to the future via a quantum computer was also intriguing and very well done. It could have been a concept that came across as wonky or even magical, but Adhi’s theory along with the development process grounds it more than enough to seem feasible.

Once the set-up is established, author Dan Frey then does some very nice work in a way that shows he thought through the implications of this technology even if his main characters haven’t. Adhi and Ben do a few tests that convince them that the future cannot be changed by them knowing the future. Although Adhi is more cautious we see how Ben’s enthusiasm blows past any notions that this is a bad idea.

This is where Frey’s themes become clear, and it couldn’t be more timely than this moment when social media companies who made fortunes by allowing anyone to say pretty much whatever they want have now been forced to reckon with the consequences because it turns out there’s a lot of people who are shameless opportunists who will lie constantly, and there’s even more people ready to swallow everything they say.

That’s why Ben’s character really struck me because he talks a good game about how letting everyone share the information about the future makes for a fair and level playing field and that it would actually make the world better. Yet, the story also shows time and again how he uses that argument to beat down rational concerns and criticisms about the technology he’s trying to sell and how much responsibility he bears for it. Sound like any tech billionaires you know?

Frey uses this to turn what could be the book’s biggest plot hole into a strength. Because if Adhi and Ben can see the future, why wouldn’t they just keep it secret and play the stock market to get rich without taking the tech public and open the Pandora’s Box of letting everyone see the immediate future?

Part of the answer is that it isn’t enough to just be rich, they want to become famous as world changers like Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, or Mark Zuckerberg. Or at least that’s Ben dream, and he can persuade Adhi that it’s his too. Which means they have to let the public know about it so the excuses about doing it for the good of the world start up. Plus, they know that they’ve already done it by looking ahead so why worry about it? They’ve set up a logic loop that demands that they do this even as the warning signs start flashing faster and faster.

On top of all this, it reads like any of those real stories about how some friends started a business, made it big, and then when disagreements come about it, everything falls apart. As you read their emails and texts you can see the cracks starting to form, and there’s a real sense of impending doom because readers can see what’s happening even if they can’t. This has impact because Frey built a real and believable bond between Adhi and Ben so that I was still rooting for these guys even as I was thinking that this was all a terrible idea.

Combine all this with a fantastic ending, and you’ve got one of the better sci-fi books that has extremely relevant themes.
Profile Image for PamG.
816 reviews481 followers
January 27, 2021
I have seen The Future Is Yours by Dan Frey categorized as science fiction, time travel, and as a techno-thriller, and there are aspects of all of these within this unique story set in California and Washington D.C. The key question in this book relates to seeing what is happening one year in the future. Would you take advantage of such an opportunity? Do you really want to know what the future holds for you?

Former college friends Ben Boyce and Adhi Chaudry answer this question with an overwhelming yes. Forming a startup called The Future, they want to deliver this technology to the world. Ben takes on the management, marketing and financial side and Adhi tackles the technical side. Will they make their dream into a reality where the device can predict everything perfectly? Will there be any downsides or long-term consequences? Would they be social, political, personal, or something else entirely? Can they overcome the technical, scalability, and ethical hazards of such a technology? What types of opposition and opportunities will they encounter?

The reader gains a strong sense of Ben and Adhi’s personalities through their texts and emails. Additionally, Adhi shows significant character growth despite his introversion while Ben seems to stay the extroverted entrepreneur that is out to conquer the world. How will their relationship change?

While I know other books have used similar formats, this is my first reading experience where the entire novel was told through written records such as emails, transcripts, blogs, text messages, incident reports, and letters. In this case, it worked well. Additionally, the reader gains some insight into venture capital and even board of directors’ office politics. Somehow, the format also managed to invoke a strong sense of suspense and tension which I didn’t expect, but made the reading experience pleasurable. I did think some of the swearing used wasn’t necessary to convey the mood and tension and could have been handled differently. Additionally, the use of stereotypes, if it was going to be used for the two main characters, could have been reversed and would have made the story more unique. Themes include friendship, ethics, love, business acumen, predictive accuracy, change, and consequences to actions.

Overall, this gripping, original, and steadily-paced book was entertaining and kept my interest. This novel was definitely thought-provoking. The ending? You’ll have to read it to find out if they are successful or not. Does the world change? What happens to Ben and Adhi?

Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine – Del Rey and Dan Frey provided a complimentary digital ARC of this novel via NetGalley. This is my honest review. Opinions are mine alone and are not biased in any way. Publication date is currently set for February 9, 2021. This review was originally posted at Mystery and Suspense Magazine.
Profile Image for Montzalee Wittmann.
4,559 reviews2,312 followers
September 23, 2020
The Future Is Yours by Dan Frey is a book I requested from NetGalley and the review is voluntary. I found the concept of this book very intriguing and it opened up a lot of questions about what would happen if this was real. Those same questions are addressed in the book. The book is presented not in a novel format but as transcripts and notes. A unique way to tell the story but also the only flaw I found. It was a bit different to follow at times.
The story has two guys building a computer that could look into the future to exactly one year from the date. They want to market it. Government steps in. Friendships wobble. Very intriguing and imaginative! Trouble all the way!
Profile Image for Sylvain Neuvel.
Author 21 books5,081 followers
November 29, 2020
Let me tell you about your future. You’re going to love this book. A fascinating premise, brilliantly executed. THE FUTURE IS YOURS is a thrilling scifi adventure you simply can’t put down and a masterful modern take on the epistolary novel.
Profile Image for Faith.
1,846 reviews516 followers
February 20, 2021
In 2021, college friends Ben Boyce and Adhi Chaudry form a venture based on an idea that Adhi was developing in grad school. He thought he could create a computer that was able to collect, with perfect accuracy, information from one year in the future. Written in the form of emails, newspaper articles, blog posts and Congressional records, this book tells the story of this invention. The partners are so consumed with the science, the quest for startup money, threatened lawsuits and government hearings that they lose sight of how the computer might be used. Actually, they do consider the implications, but Adhi is a scientist with mental health issues and Ben is a perpetually optimistic entrepreneur, so they might not be the two best people to have the fate of the world in their hands.

I am not a huge fan of books written in this way, but I thought that the style worked in this case to convey both facts and emotion. The ending didn’t tidy everything up, and I liked the ambiguity. I would be willing to read more by this author.

I received a free copy of this book from the publisher.
Profile Image for Jennifer.
315 reviews34 followers
February 19, 2021
3 stars

The Future is Yours is one of those books that I am not really sure how to rate. On one hand, I really liked the unique way that Frey told the story, through a series of texts, emails, articles and a deposition. On the other hand, Ben was a truly unlikeable protagonist, but not in a “good” way. Honestly, he was an egotistical jerk and I just found it very difficult having the story told in his voice.

The concept of this novel is great and that is what drew me in. I have recently become of fan of what I would consider “light” sci-fi (Think Dark Matter, Recursion, 11/22/63) and this book falls right into that genre. I also enjoyed the plot and the pacing of this book certainly keep me flipping pages.

The book definitely starts out strong and the premise of being able to get information one year into the future was really intriguing. But as the story moves along, it gets more into the weeds and kind of starts to fall apart when you realize that this technology really has no point and the end just didn’t work for me.

Thank you to Random House for my copy of this book via NetGalley
Profile Image for Matt.
3,723 reviews12.8k followers
January 21, 2021
First and foremost, a large thank you to NetGalley, Dan Frey, Random House Publishing Group-Ballantine, and Del Rey for providing me with a copy of this publication, which allows me to provide you with an unbiased review.

What would you do if you created a piece of technology that could peer into the future and demonstrate what life would be like, scanning emails you have yet to write and seeing search engine results for events that have yet to occur? Such is the premise of Day Frey’s novel, The Future is Yours. Two young men create a system that can project ahead, hoping that it will help people see the path they are bound to take, a likely goldmine. However, the road is fraught with unforeseen (or ignored) paths, such that the future is more likely to ruin, rather than reinforce, life as you know it. A thought provoking piece that touches on the technology, while offering an insight into why one might not want to peer behind the elusive curtain. Recommended to those who love a little tech in their thrillers.

Ben Boyce and Adhvan (Adhi) Chaudry had an irresistible bond in college, fuelled by their love of technology. They worked together on an idea that would create a system that could look into the future, allowing the user to forecast what lay ahead for them and the world at large. While many scoffed at the idea, Ben and Adhi forged on, using their determination to make it work.

Money proved to be elusive, but this could not deter the two men from pursuing their dreams. Ben was the business-minded one, while Adhi worked through the quantum computing, finally coming up with something that could be feasible. Their system, dubbed The Future, caught the eye of many in the tech and business worlds, though there was still a great deal of reticence by those who did not like dabbling into the future.

After Ben brought his wife, Leila, on to act as legal counsel, everything appeared to be running smoothly. However, the system itself needed some strong parameters in order to function well. Could seeing into the future allow someone to alter their destined path? Might this glimpse allow for illegal and unethical decisions to be made? Falling into the wrong hands, might this prove to be an issue of national security? Ben and Adhi are forced to wrestle with this, as well as some of their own personal quibbles, all while The Future rises in prominence.

As emotions run high and business decisions are made, someone will get left in the dust. It becomes a bloodsport to juggle The Future with what the months ahead will bring, including being summoned before Congress to answer for the technology. Ben is armed with foreknowledge of what is to come, but nothing will prepare him for The Future, including the future itself.

This book caught my eye when I saw the dust jacket summary, as I am always intrigued about what forecasting ahead would do for the world. While America has just gone through a political abyss where they wished to see how to make America great after authoritarian rule, many have not seriously thought or hoped to know what awaits them on the other side of the proverbial horizon. Dan Frey offers readers an insight without getting too tech-heavy or delving into the world of sci-fi.

Ben Boyce and Adhi Chaudry offer up wonderful co-protagonists in this piece. While they come from vastly different backgrounds, their passion for technology and looking into the future binds them together. There is some backstory woven into the narrative, mostly to explore how the two met and what brought them here, with a great deal of the focus in the present (and future, to a degree). Ben is the business-minded one whose eye is on the prize, while Adhi struggles with being the tech-savvy geek who is pushed aside and forgotten. These two men grow, independently at times, together in other instances, but surely apart as well. Their personal and professional struggles are front and centre in this piece, as the reader is forced to choose which of them is the more relatable and perhaps liked.

Frey does well to develop some strong supporting characters, some of whom emerge throughout the piece, while others are blips on the radar of this book. The present/future mix allows the reader to see how certain people will influence things throughout the novel, steering the story in directions for a time before letting fate take the lead. This is done so effectively and many of those who grace the pages of the book become influencers of the story’s future, in a unique manner.

While I am not usually a fan of sci-fi, this book really connected with me. It does have the element of looking into the future and using technology to dictate the path, but it does not get too heavy in that regard, keeping it readable and fun for the masses. Frey writes in such a way that concepts are easy to understand and fun for the reader throughout. This is not your typical story, in that it is retold through emails, memos, congressional testimony, and text messages. The narrative flows well using these forms of communication, exhibiting the emotion one might expect from strong narrative and dialogue. The plot is strong and pushes ahead, forecasting and foreboding throughout, as Ben and Adhi face professional and personal struggles throughout. If Dan Frey’s novel says anything, it is that his future is sure to be successful, and one need not look into any piece of technology to predict that!

Kudos, Mr. Frey, for a strong piece of writing that captured my attention throughout. I am eager to see what others think of it and where you will take readers next. The future awaits...

Love/hate the review? An ever-growing collection of others appears at:

A Book for All Seasons, a different sort of Book Challenge: https://www.goodreads.com/group/show/...
Profile Image for Jordan (Jordy’s Book Club).
374 reviews17.8k followers
December 1, 2020
QUICK TAKE: cool concept (tech bros invent essentially a time machine that allows them to see one year into the future) and I loved how creative the author is in telling the story through emails, transcripts, letters, etc. That being said, I had some problems with the story structure and character decisions, and have I mentioned time travel makes me go cross-eyed with confusion almost every single time. Fast read for fans of the genre, otherwise at your own risk.
Profile Image for Karen’s Library.
1,063 reviews164 followers
February 8, 2021
Being a huge fan of Sylvain Neuvel’s Sleeping Giants, the format of this book as told in media form using transcripts, texts, emails, blogs, articles, etc., was familiar to me and I loved it. And being a huge fan of Blake Crouch, the futuristic sci-fi storyline was exciting as well.

I’m going to venture to say that this book is my favorite read of 2020!

Two best friends discover a way to look at the internet one year ahead in time and see what happens in the future. This storyline takes them from idea to reality, to becoming billionaires, to building the computers, and through to marketing. The government steps in and holds a hearing to determine if being able to see the future is a security issue. Can the friendship survive?

This was exciting stuff and I couldn’t get enough. I got serious goosebumps at the ending, and I still can’t stop thinking about it.

Well done, Dan Frey! I’m adding this author to my must read list of authors.

*Thank you so much to Del Rey Publishing and NetGalley for the advance copy!*
Profile Image for Chris.
226 reviews56 followers
January 24, 2021
The Future Is Yours finds our main characters Adhi and Ben meeting as college roommates and follows them as they create a Silicon Valley tech startup known as The Future. This is a device that will let anyone who has possession of it to connect to the internet one year in the future and see what's happening and the ramifications of such a piece of technology.

They created the device as something to make the world a better place. What happens instead once they start creating buzz about it and getting hundreds of millions in investment money and press is much different.

The writing style for this is epistolary, told through texts, emails, transcripts, articles, and blog posts. I found it to be a very effective way to tell this story and get to know the main characters better and how the tech changes them. The social commentary used in the sci fi oriented blog posts gets the underlying message across effectively and also indicts Silicon Valley for its lack of diversity. The tech explanations are thorough, though over my head, but it was still very interesting to see how it works. If you like sci fi or science and tech, I think you'll enjoy this read!

My appreciation to Random House Publishing Group-Ballantine, Del Rey, author Dan Frey, and NetGalley for gifting me a digital copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.
Profile Image for Michelle.
651 reviews181 followers
March 7, 2021
This is a sci-fi novel written in an epistolary format. You have emails, Tweets, Congressional hearing transcripts, newspaper articles, phone conversations . . . All of these things are coming together to allow us to hear the perspectives of these two best friends Ben and Ahdi. When they first start out in college Ahdi is the quiet genius and Ben is unsure of himself as the first in his family to attend college. They seem like opposites. But when Ben sticks puts his neck on the line for Ahdi I thought their friendship would stand the test of time.

Ahdi has created the technology that allows you to take a peek into the future. Ben with his ambition has built the company that will bring this technology to the public. Most of us can already see the danger here. The future may hold things we don't want to see and what is the point if you have no power to change it anyway. Of course, Ben and Ahdi fall on opposite sides of this coin. Ben would sell his soul to the devil for the sake of the company. Ahdi moves with caution and considers the possible negative outcomes.

Ahdi brings up an important point using Dickens A Christmas Carol. Within the first few lines of the novel we are introduced to Scrooge's business partner Jacob Marley. He comes to him as a ghost burdened in chains to warn Scrooge of the ghosts to come. Scrooge through these spectral visitors gets to travel back and forth through time, ultimately changed for the better because of the experience. But what of Jacob Marley? "He's dead and he has no options."

So which is the best take?
- Would you want to know your future even if you couldn't change it?
- Would you want the ability to change yourself and potentially have a better future?
Profile Image for Darla.
3,344 reviews526 followers
January 27, 2021
Surprisingly engaging in an epistolary format and accessible despite the quantum and string theory that is thrown around regarding the prototype. I found this engrossing and difficult to put down. At times it was like watching a train wreck in slow motion. The combination of web articles, emails, text messages, blog posts, hearing transcripts, and even a best man speech worked for me. It brought to mind the two latest books from Blake Crouch -- 'Dark Matter' and 'Recursion.' If you are a fan, this book is for you. Can Ben and Adhi's friendship survive their journey as entrepreneurs? What about Ben's marriage? And, most importantly, have they unintentionally set in motion a world apocalypse? Hang on for the end. It may surprise you, too!

Thank you to Random House and NetGalley for a DRC in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Jennifer.
1,114 reviews72 followers
February 6, 2021
“The Future Is Yours” by Dan Frey

This sci-fi novel is an interesting take on time travel. Frey does a good job with the science behind his idea. His protagonists are both really annoying, though. They are so stereotypes as to be almost caricatures.
Flat out, I don’t like the writing style. The story is told through text messages, emails, letters, Congressional hearing minutes, etc. In my view is a mess.
Three stars is what I rate this book. Good idea, not so good execution.
This book was a Netgalley gift from Del Rey in exchange for my honest review. The opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Profile Image for Bandit.
4,511 reviews454 followers
October 1, 2020
The Future is yours…if you can afford it. Because it’s now a technology, not even a near future Future tech, but present day, the novel takes place in 2020/2021. Which is when two bro cliches, an entrepreneur and a computer wiz, comes up with a device that can make computers communicate with their future versions going forward up to one year. Imagine knowing immediate outcome of your every action and decision, every winning lottery number, every investment, every major political decision. People would just stumble through their lives in a sort of Calvinistic daze of their fate predetermined and unchangeable. Free will…dead and buried. So yes, in short, it would be the absolute worst technology invention ever, at least as far as its effects on the very fabric of society. But the bros love it, so the bros go all out trying to establish their company with the goal to make The Future available for everyone, thus leveling the playing field. But of course they are looking to sell it and not cheaply, so it isn’t exactly as altruistic and proletariat and democratic as all that. And so this is the story of the bros and their invention, their time in the sun short lived, but epic, as far as such things go. Told through interviews, emails, texts, etc., the format that is explained in the end, it speeds by, hitting all the cliched checkmarks on the way, the bros are racially diverse (one black, one Indian) from low socioeconomic statuses, with much to prove. The black one is a marketing genius, schmoozer extraordinaire, brash, obnoxious and arrogant. The Indian one is a computer genius, who figured out quantum entanglements, a socially challenged introvert with latent conscience. Together they are a force until the reality, both pecuniary and moral, comes crashing in. So that’s the basic gist of the story. It’s written by a screenwriter and reads like a movie, same dynamics, same prioritizing of glitz over substance, the same snappy (though not all that clever) dialogue, the same heavy concentration of action over things like character development, etc. Actually, the characters are developed to an extent, they are just so freaking unlikeable. And yes, I know, they are young, but still…there’s something so brash and arrogant about them. Maybe it’s the tech bro Silicon Valley thing. Most likely. I quit that tv show after one episode, just didn’t care for the antics of the boys and their toys, the immature soulless sort of atmosphere. In the book, Boyce especially, is positively hubristic, not at all the sort of person you’d want to succeed, he’s just asking to be cut down to size for all his swaggering obnoxiousness. So yeah, the characters are cliches, loathable at best, the plot follows an all too familiar premise, there’s even a prerequisite love triangle, the tech is based on some questionable quantum mumbo jumbo and is just essentially a terrible, terrible idea. This book reads easily and quickly, but has a strong angering effect. The characters don’t always have to be lovable and charming, sure, but this is just too far on the opposite end of the spectrum. So this book didn’t really work for me. And it definitely doesn’t deserve comparisons to the infinitely superior Dark Matter. It’ll work for some readers, people who are fascinated by Silicon Valley’s (lack of) culture, insane inventions, epic bromances, rude arrogant dude cliches or brass(ish) balls and swinging eggplants, a certain type of nerds, etc. And it might be interesting to discuss the sociopolitical ramifications of The Future, in theory. But other than that, this was a disappointment. And normally I like this sort of thing too. But this story was just too busy strutting in self importance to really concentrate of important things and grand ideas. The book just wasted all of its potential for cleverness in favor of being hip. And morality hastily delivered at last moment didn’t quite save it…though it tried. Oh well, for genuinely fun time traveling bromances we’ll always have Bill and Ted. Thanks Netgalley.
Profile Image for The Captain.
1,073 reviews372 followers
February 5, 2021
Ahoy there me mateys!  I received this sci-fi eARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  So here be me honest musings . . .

This book just did not work for me.  I gave it a good whirl and actually finished it but was ultimately very disappointed.  The main premise is that two best friends have a start up company called The Future where they have a device that can pull internet data from one year in the future.  The story is told using emails, texts, articles, and transcripts.

I did like the format.  But I read this book wanting to know how the device was used in a practical sense.  I was not satisfied with how it works or evolves.  I found one of the main characters, Ben, to be beyond horrible as a person and I almost stopped reading half-way through because of it.  Frankly his best friend and wife deserve better.  The subplot involving the two of them was irksome though.  Plus that ending was awful and cheesy.

I do think this book can find a good readership.  I just wasn't in that group.  Arrr!
Profile Image for Mogsy (MMOGC).
2,030 reviews2,604 followers
February 23, 2021
4.5 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum https://bibliosanctum.com/2021/02/21/...

Two friends. One big idea. This is the story of Ben Boyce and Adhi Chaudry, a couple of geeky fanboys who met in college and bonded over a love of technology and science fiction. On the surface, they couldn’t be any more different in background and personality. Ben was a poor black kid who nonetheless grew up to have a big heart and an insatiable love for life and adventure, befriending people easily with his sociable and charming disposition. Adhi, on the other hand, came from an Indian immigrant family who instilled in him a strict work ethic, though being an introvert and socially awkward, he would have preferred studying and research to parties and going out anyway.

Both young men are brilliant on their own, but together as a team, they have what it takes to change the world. It all begins with Adhi’s graduate dissertation which none of his supervisors would take seriously, dismissing his vision of a new application for quantum computing as nothing more than a flight of fancy. Dejected, he confides in his best friend Ben, who ends up taking a very different view on his project. Despite having had two start-ups blow up on him already, Ben is confident he can find the connections and funding to help Adhi realize his revolutionary idea. Everyone will want a piece of the technology, Ben insists, and with it, they can also help the world in so many ways.

This is how, after much experimentation and trial-and-error, the two men end up launching a groundbreaking new service which would allow users to peer into the future with a special computer that can connect to the internet one year from now. From stock market prices and sports scores to natural disasters and political elections, the device predicts everything perfectly. In fact, Ben and Adhi already know their company will be a huge success because they have already tested their technology and seen the headlines—until, of course, their system encounters a glitch. If it turns out their computers cannot offer perfect prediction as they claimed, the impact on their company would be devastating. Just how far will they go to keep it a secret? And will it even matter in the end? After all, Adhi has a disturbing theory as to why their machines can only see one year into the future and no further, and if he’s correct, the world will have much bigger problems to worry about.

For me, this novel couldn’t have come along at a better time. I was in the mood for a fast and fun read, and The Future Is Yours is all that and more. Now, you probably wouldn’t think that a story involving quantum computing and such a convoluted system of time travel would be all that light, but in this case, I believe the science and technology was actually designed to be quite minimal and not really intended to stand up to much scrutiny, so it worked out well for me to simply take it all in with a grain of salt and go along for the ride.

As well, I was really more into this book for the story and its characters. One thing to know before going in is that The Future Is Yours is told in epistolary style, presented as a collection of documents including transcripts, emails, newspaper articles, blog posts, etc. I’ve always been a big fan of this method of storytelling even though few stories are actually ideal for it, which was why I was pleasantly surprised to find how well-suited this one was for the format. There were no awkward moments of immersion breaking or sneaky ways to work in some extra exposition. Everything simply flowed the way they were supposed to, another factor which helped make this one such an easy breezy read.

Plus, I knew going in that the focus of this novel was going to be about Ben and Adhi’s friendship, and Dan Frey did a phenomenal job developing both characters through the ups-and-downs of their journey from a dorm room at Stanford to the high-powered boardrooms of Silicon Valley. And while the story might be light on the science behind the ability to see through time, this is certainly not the case when it comes to the consequences of holding such power in your hands. Greed, ambition, and jealousy all play role in the relationship between our two protagonists, and it was amazing how the author tied in business, big tech, and even politics as a bulk of the story unfolds via a congressional hearing at which Ben and Adhi were called upon to explain the dangers behind their technology.

What can I say, but I just loved The Future Is Yours and found it to be an addictive read that kept me transfixed throughout. This might have been a case of the right book at the right time, but I also think it’s more than that. At its heart, this is a tale exploring the strength of friendship, with just the right amount of science fiction to establish its fascinating premise. I wish every book I picked up was so entertaining.
Profile Image for Juli.
1,879 reviews473 followers
March 27, 2021
Ben and Adhi are friends. They've been friends since college. One is extremely driven....the other is a genius with issues. A perfect combination to create something wonderful....and dangerous. A computer. But so much more than other computers or tech devices. Their invention can connect to the internet.... But, you say, almost any device including toasters can now connect to the internet. But....can they connect to the internet a year in the future? Ben and Adhi's invention can.....

Wow....this book had me thinking so many thoughts. If I could....would I? If it could be invented....should it? My ending answer was pretty much a very strong....NO. But I can definitely see the pull of such a device....people might want to know how their business will do, who they will be dating, stock prices, election results.... But could they handle the knowledge that they are going to die? Or that very bad things await them in the next year?

Sometimes what people want....and what their decisions actually bring them....are two very different things. What if people could see those things a year in advance? Oh, it could cause all sorts of bad bad things to happen....very bad things. But once you open that gate....can it be closed again?

Very interesting book! This is the first book by Dan Frey that I've read. I'm definitely going to read his other book, The Retreat!

**I voluntarily read a review copy of this book from Random House. All opinions expressed are entirely my own.**

3/27/2021 - listened to audiobook version of this story. Full cast. Great narrators! Length just over 8 hours. Entertaining listen!
Profile Image for Lisa Lynch.
441 reviews240 followers
June 26, 2021
Dan Frey's The Future is Yours is an epistolary novel about two college buddies who invent a world-changing technology that might do a lot of people some good... or it might ruin humanity all together.

I enjoyed this book quite a bit. It's one of the most compelling things I've read in recent memory because of two things: 1) the characters and 2) the storytelling method.

1) The Characters:

Ben Boyce is an asshole. He's an obnoxious tech hipster who uses comedy and charm to misdirect attention away from his big-headed narcissism and near-sightedness (which is pretty ironic for a guy who's developing a technology that can literally see into the future). I honestly couldn't stand the guy, but I can't deny that he was an interesting, believable character and that I was rooting for him the entire way.

The real star of the show, however, is Ben's BFF.

Adhi Chaudry is the heart of this story. He is an autistic savant character, which normally rubs me the wrong way, but the way it is done here was the best I've seen it done. And I guess I have to say that Ben might be an asshole, but his relationship with Adhi is endearing and rather lovely. Ben understands Adhi, accepts his quirks, and supports him almost unquestionably. Ben regularly checks up on his friend, monitors his mental health, and encourages him to be who he is, unashamedly, every day of his life.

If this isn't friendship goals, I don't know what is.

Adhi's a brilliant engineer who invents a technology that allows people to boot up a computer and search for information 1 year in the future. Ben notices his friend's brilliance, encourages him to pursue his crazy ideas, and realizes that Adhi has the power to change the world. Adhi is the brains and Ben, the charming manipulative asshole that he is, is the beauty. He can and does smooth talk all the millionaires out of their millions and bing, bang, boom, you have a company called The Future that is scheduled to release a new tech that will for sure ruin change the world.

I thought Adhi's character was really well done, and the fact that he is autistic isn't really made into a huge deal. There are occasional comments about how Adhi doesn't like to be in the limelight and doesn't attend social functions, but the fact that he is a bit awkward isn't that big of a problem for anyone, including himself.

At one point Ben makes a casual comment about how he and Adhi used to hang out in their dorm room texting each other back and forth and it reminded me how awesome technology is for people who struggle with communication. Even when we are in the same room together, it can be hard for a lot of people to connect with one another. I thought it was really cool to see Ben and Adhi develop such a strong friendship despite their personal struggles.

My favorite part of this book is Adhi's Tumbler posts titled Musings of an Anonymous Sci-Fi Superfan where he uses pop culture references to explain his feelings and connections with the world.


In his first post, Adhi explains his relationship with Ben by writing a love-letter of sorts about Captain Kirk and Spock from Star Trek. I've worked with individuals who have disabilities, including autism, for a very long time, and I've seen kids do this with Disney movies or other shows/cartoons/media because people with autism relate more to fiction than they do to real people. It was SO cool to see this portrayed so well!

Adhi makes another post titled "In Defense of Frankenstein" that is a wonderful explanation of how he feels about creating such a powerful tech and his plans to share it with the world and also, again, his relationship with Ben.

And then there's one titled "The Loneliness of a Wookie" where Adhi explains his feeling about being Ben's sidekick using Chewbacca from Star Wars.

I hate pop references that are simply for the name drop or nostalgia and it was really cool to see it used in a way that was purposeful, realistic, relatable, and intelligent. I'd say this book is worth reading just for Adhi's posts, but there honestly aren't enough of them, which is one of my biggest complaints.

Oh, and there are other side characters, Ben's wife Leila, and some business partners and such. They are all well done enough, but the focus here really is on Ben and Adhi, so I'm not going to spend any time on them here.

2) The Storytelling Method

So, like I said, this is an epistolary novel. The entirety of this story is told through excerpts of transcripts, emails, texts, blog posts, articles, memes, and the like. It is REALLY well done.

A lot of this book focuses on Ben making connections in the tech business, starting his and Adhi's company, and his dealings with investors in pursuit of venture capital. It's probably the most boring thing ever, but I was enthralled with this narrative.

Full disclosure, it honestly wasn't the story itself that had me so enthralled, but rather, the way it is told. Using an epistolary structure doesn't just reflect the real-life way these people communicated, but it also adds to the tech aspect of their modern life. There's also a voyeuristic intrigue in this novel, especially at the parts that involve Ben's wife and some drama that unfolds later in the book.

And I know I just said the epistolary structure was great and all, but I also have to admit that this is also where my biggest complaint comes in, so prepare for me to contradict myself.

There are times where this book is repetitive and the pacing lags. Because a lot of the information needed in this narrative is inferred from the hard evidence presented to us as readers, you have to be patient with this book. The characters only know what is communicated to them personally, so the reader is privy to a lot of cross-information that the characters are not.

Because of the epistolary nature of this story, it takes time for all the characters and plot threads to line up, so just be prepared for that. But I think this is also part of why the book was so damn compelling.

In the end, I rated Dan Frey's The Future is Yours a solid 4 out of 5 stars. Come for the interesting premise and stay for Adhi.

You might like this if you like: tech, character studies, and realistic portrayals of individuals who have autism.
Profile Image for Bam cooks the books ;-).
1,851 reviews231 followers
February 6, 2021
*3-3.5 stars. Written in the form of texts, emails, transcripts of testimony, etc., this novel tells the story of two college roommates who come up with an idea for how to access the future using the magic of quantum computing. You can tell the author is a screenwriter because these characters are so stereo-typical. I found it, however, to be a quick and entertaining read because I have a fascination for anything related to time travel.

One young man is an Indian-American named Adhvan Chaudry who is a painfully-introverted computer science genius who of course is the brains behind this scheme. His best friend is an African-American guy named Ben Boyce who basically wants to be the first black billionaire and has the charisma and the moves to get there.

And the machine works--the idea being that your present-day computer can access your computer one year in the future and see what is happening in your life and the world. Just think how that could be used! But right away there are ethical questions, ie: does it take away 'free will?' The two partners don't always agree and then the money men weigh in and the government...and...well, what a mess. According to Ben, 'It is not the scientist's responsibility to anticipate every eventuality his discovery may produce.' Or is it?

I found this to be pretty entertaining, a book that drew me back to reading more, but my husband, a big scifi fan, didn't care for the form in which it is written and abandoned it after just a few pages. So it definitely is not for everyone. But if you hang in till the end, there is actually a reason for this form that makes sense. So you decide.

I received an arc of this novel from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Many thanks for the opportunity.
497 reviews1 follower
December 20, 2020
A modern day cautionary tale meant to be gobbled up in a few chunks. Best college friends Adhi Chaudry and Ben Boyce have created a prototype device that can connect to the internet a year in the future. Adhi is a virtual genius in Computing science and has developed the technology through quantum computing and quantum entanglement, while Ben provides the entrepreneurial skills to start up the company they call The Future. Their vision is to have this technology available to everyone with an affordable desk top device. But, do they realize the possible implications to society and the future? Even with putting guidelines in place is this truly enough? Will there be individuals who use financial information to profit by speculation? Imagine how a terrorist group could use such information. Does the mere presence of such technology refute the existence of free will? Even before the consumer roll-out they find themselves as virtual billionaires and in receipt of an unwelcome buy-out offer from a national megacorporation.
Dan Frey spools out this page-turner in an usual format ... utilizing emails, texts, blogs, news articles, and even congressional transcripts. The main drawback to this approach is the diminishment of characterization of our three main protagonists ... Adhi, Ben and Leila ( college girlfriend and eventually lawyer, then wife to Ben). However, motivations of one of our protagonists are uniquely provided in a blog on Tumblr: " Musings of an anonymous sci-fi Superfan " Frey provides multiple reveals, illustrating that there are consequences to "poking the bear". Thanks to NetGalley and Del Rey for providing an Uncorrected Proof of this innovative novel in exchange for an honest review. ( at readersremains.com)
Profile Image for Lisa Wolf.
1,619 reviews176 followers
February 10, 2021
If I had the technology of this book back in February 2020, then I could have found out a year ago that I would end up reading The Future Is Yours this week — compulsively, start to finish, taking a break just for the bare necessities. (And work. Because work waits for no woman. Or book. But I digress.)

The Future Is Yours is just so freakin’ cool. Two friends, former college roommates now stuck in the workworld grind, invent a technology that can change the world. Ben is charming, charismatic, and dreams of success. Adhi is brilliant, introverted, and not particularly socially adept. Adhi leaves Stanford before finishing his Ph.D. in Computer Science, frustrated that the dissertation advisors can’t see the possibilities of his complex thoughts on quantum entanglement.

But Ben gets it — sure, maybe he doesn’t get the physics, but he gets the potential, and convinces Adhi that they can make his dream a reality. The dream is seeing the future, using quantum entanglement (no, don’t ask me to explain) to create a connection between a computer in the present and itself in the future, so that someone using the device will be able to access the Internet for information that hasn’t happened yet.

Armed with a dream, Ben and Adhi set out to take Silicon Valley by storm. And while they get laughed out of plenty of rooms, they finally find a VC investor who’s willing to bet on them. From nobodies, they’re suddenly at the helm of The Future, a company that’s getting billion-dollar buyout offers from the likes of Google.

One of the basic principles of The Future is that the future it sees, one year forward, can’t be changed. Everything is connected, everything is already determined. This of course opens up all sorts of debates about free will and human nature, and also leads to The Future’s first scandal — a prototype user who takes his own life after reading about his future death. But did The Future simply report on inevitable events, or did it somehow cause what happened?

Told through memos, emails, texts, hearing transcripts, and other written communications, The Future Is Yours takes us on a journey through Adhi and Ben’s friendship and the crazy trajectory of their company. The deeper they get into The Future, the darker their lives become, and their friendship and closest relationships are all on the line… and if certain dire predictions turn out to be true, the future of human life might be at risk too.

This book is one crazy ride. At first, it feels like putting together a puzzle with pieces missing. We jump straight into Congressional hearings, then go back to Ben and Adhi’s college days, moving forward with the story while also seeing how such an incredibly messed-up situation came into being.

Through their texts and emails, we get to know Adhi and Ben’s personalities, their values, and how they view life, and see how very different they are. Adhi won my heart by virtue of a being a closet pop culture geek, making references to everything from Star Trek to Doctor Who to Twilight (yes, really). Quite awesome.

As I said at the start of this review, I just couldn’t put The Future Is Yours down. It’s fast-paced, exciting, weird, and challenging, not to mention funny and just a wee bit scary in a cautionary tale kind of way. I didn’t really know what to expect when I picked it up — and I think that was a big piece of the fun. A great read for when you want to get away from the real world for a while.

Review copy courtesy of the publisher via NetGalley. Full review at Bookshelf Fantasies.
Profile Image for Sherwood Smith.
Author 168 books37.5k followers
February 7, 2021
A popular narrative style these days, especially in YA, is a story told entirely in texts, e-mails, transcripts, etc. This novel is told that way--and still manages to remain very cinematic as it extrapolates a computer start-up put together by a couple of college friends.

One is a brilliant computer geek, the other a marketing maven. The computer geek unsuccessfully tried to pitch as his PhD thesis a computer that can tell the future . . . and when he's turned down by his academic committee, he and his friends go off to the Silicon World.

Unfortunately, at that point I began to lose interest, as their relationship deteriorates and they both turn into total lunchbuckets. That might be super exciting for some readers, especially at the wild tech that glitters all through the pages. I just don't want to spend my time with jerks, so my interest began to wane toward the end.

So this might be just the book for you--the skiffy is certainly fun and glitzy.

Copy provided by NetGalley
Profile Image for Kristi.
829 reviews199 followers
December 5, 2020
The Future is Yours by Dan Frey caught my attention right away. Told in epistolary style using mixed media format, it follows two friends that have developed a unique way to look in to the future. Using quantum computing, computer genius Adhi discovers a new technology that allows a computer to see forward in to time by communicating with its future self. Mind blown yet?

When Adhi’s college roommate and best friend, Ben urges him to follow through with his college dissertation, it starts a chain of events that will lead to mass mayhem, greed and, yep, pending apocalypse. Imagine if all one had to do is search the internet to find out what happens a year in the future? The stock markets? Current crisis and elections? It’s insane to imagine! But as I said earlier, the mayhem that would ensue would be just that, insane and if it was only available to the wealthiest? Well, imagine that as well. Needless to say, my mind went all over the place while I was reading this. Obituaries? Yikes! Email yourself or a loved one? This is in fact, how the creators verified its authenticity. Sending myself an email today to be read a year prior is mind blowing to say the least. Anyway, I digress! It’s not just the science and all its implications but there’s also a very personal story at heart, here. There is a friendship, there is love, there is jealousy. I’d like to add that the ending literally blew me away! Bravo!

This is a solid read, strong in sci-fi but at its core, a suspenseful and satisfying story of friendship, love and personal ethics. Highly recommend this to any fan of the genre.
Thank you to Random House - Ballantine for providing a copy for review.
Profile Image for Kimberly.
694 reviews24 followers
January 5, 2021
"The Future is Yours" by Dan Frey is the perfect book for fans of "Recursion" and "Dark Matter" by Blake Crouch! This entertaining science fiction novel follows the story of two best friends who develop technology that allows them to see one year into the future. After quitting their jobs and creating a company to further develop and sell their "time machine, " Ben and Adhi quickly discover that their invention could change the world forever.

Creatively told through a series of emails, texts, and hearing transcripts, "The Future Is Yours" is a fast-paced and thrilling read. It shows how dangerous some technology can be if it is used by the wrong hands and how greed can ruin lives.

Many thanks to NetGalley, the publisher, and the author for the opportunity to read an advanced digital copy of this intriguing book in exchange for my honest review.
Profile Image for Crystal Zavala.
443 reviews43 followers
November 9, 2020
The Future Is Yours told epistolary style using emails, texts, blog posts, transcripts, and news articles. I am a huge fan of this style of writing. It also includes photos and diagrams that really add to the novel. Depending on how the audiobook is done, I probably wouldn't recommend that route.

For the first half of the book, I was fully invested in Ben Boyce and Adhi Chaudry's story and invention. I really thought this book would rival Dark Matter or Recursion. It started to fall flat when I couldn't really see a need for the technology. The ending didn't work out for me. There were other story lines that I think needed to be fleshed out.

I also found myself wondering about the stereotypes being portrayed. Adhi Chaudry is a stereotypical Middle Eastern nerd who is uncomfortable with woman and is essentially being used by his friend and business partner, Ben Boyce. Ben Boyce is a black man who essentially ends up being a villain of sorts. I am wondering how people of color will feel about these stereotypes.
Profile Image for JasonA.
292 reviews52 followers
April 21, 2021
I'm not sure how I feel about this one yet.

The entire book is told thru e-mails, text messages, blog posts, interviews, etc and the author does a really great job at that.

I really hated one of the main characters, but you're supposed to, so I guess the author did a good job with that. I don't really enjoy reading books with unlikeable protagonists, so that's a point against the book.

Last part has mild spoilers.

The other thing I kind of hated about the book is what they decided to do with the time machine. Why would you start a company to sell it??? Why not just buy a winning lottery ticket, invest your winnings and make billions. As long as the public doesn't know you have the time machine, then the SEC and Congress are going to leave you alone. The only real reason to make a company and sell them is so that everyone knows you invented it. Hell, save the ego trip and just announce it on your death bed if you want the credit, after making lots and lots of money.
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