David Yoon's Reviews > Golden State

Golden State by Ben H. Winters
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It's just such a delicious writerly challenge. You envision some future world - a seemingly benign surveillance state where everything is on video, where everyone records the facts of their days and lives entirely by truth. Where lies are punishable by law and enforced by Speculators that can sense lies in the very air. Where even fiction is banned and TV shows are just curated recordings of actual surveilled events. Now, how does one get away with murder in this world?

And there is this joyful sense of satire as you begin in this fictional place built on truth inspired by Winter's new understanding of our current real world after watching the swirling alternate facts reality of Trump's inauguration. Fun! And Winters is a smooth writer, taking us through this police procedural in a skewed dystopia without getting too mired in the world-building. But he wants his cake and to eat it too.

Talking about it with people smarter than me who noticed the presence of white lies in this world and the grey area of hyperbolic advertising claims. Magicians are allowed but how does science even progress if theorizing is a form of lying? Even our own speculator is guilty of lying. Nitpicking sure and I'm more than willing to suspend my disbelief for the sake of a good story but Winters just can't stick the landing. It feels rushed and hand-wavy instead of earned. Winters tees up some interesting aspects but finds himself scrambling in the rough at the end.
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Reading Progress

Started Reading
February 12, 2019 – Finished Reading
February 28, 2019 – Shelved

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message 1: by cardulelia (new) - added it

cardulelia carduelis I really should stop reading your reviews, you write with such intrigue that I automatically add to my Want to Read shelf. Hope the snow's not too much up there in Canada atm :3


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