Sci-fi/Fantasy geek :)
I read a lot of sci-fi and fantasy, so this book (and the entire series actually) was a pure joy to read. It wasn't all sunshine and roses, but there were enough of each to stock a small nursery. There is a sense of hope in this book that is missing from many (if not most) sci-fi writing. Yes, I usually prefer more gritty reading, but it is nice sometimes to sit outside in the warn sunshine in a loose-fitting shirt and shorts, sip a lemonade, and read with a smile on your face.
The writing is smart and technically plausible (which for a tech person like me is always enjoyable). I even got to use some of this book to explain "network packets" to a client of mine :) The pace moves well and has a good enough mixture of action and prose, which is important for those of us with a short attention span.
The characters are planted in shallow soil, but not entirely transparent, and interesting at least. I actually learned a bit (and thought quite a bit more) about what it might be like to be a blind person, especially a blind person using a computer. I also remembered what it was like to be a teenager again, probably the reason I am still drawn to so-called YA books. But, I think if you can't enjoy an occasional lighter read, then maybe you need to lighten up just a bit.
The narration is second-to-none! How can you complain about a full cast of talent like this? You can't! I'd love to have more audio books done this way as it lends much more credibility to the entire affair (listening to some male narrators squeak out a female voice reminds you that you are listening to someone read a book instead of losing yourself in the story).
I have an Audible 2-book per month membership and actually went out of my way to purchase the 3rd book in this series before the end of the month, a rare occurrence for me. That should tell you all you need to know!
I thought the premise of the story was fascinating but the book ended up being one long introduction without much of a plot. Near the end of the book, I understood why the separate stories in China and with the apes were brought up, but it was such a long road to get to minor points in the book. All in all, this book felt like one very long, tedious introduction. Although the performances were good, it did not save the story. I would guess (hope) that the next two books have more of a plot and storyline, but I'm just not willing to spend my money or time on them.
reader of books
First the bad. There was more product placement in this book than in anything else I have ever read. It was distracting and not really necessary. In ten years it will greatly out date the book. Second, the few places of sexual innuendo or puns made me groan. Again, distracting, unrealistic and unnecessary.
The good, the characters were very interesting as was the story. The wakening was well done I thought and the character interactions were very believable. As for audio quality, it was great. Multiple voices, well executed! I was pleasantly surprised by the use of original material near the end about which I will say nothing more.
Yes the premise is far-fetched but then isn't all SF that way? I think that it takes place in this day and age is what amplifies this. I will be downloading the next one very soon.
Well conceived, thoughtout, written and narrated. Robert J. Sawyer creates characters that I really liked and wanted to know better and places them in fascinating settings that are believable. Caitlin is young and smart without being disagreeable. He captured a young, brilliant mind as she deftly and easily deals with today's technology in spite of her blindness and then adds some amazing additional technology that could possibly change her life . . . if not the world! Amazing book. Excellent narration. I look forward to the trilogy.
Nothing... i quit listening several times but told myself the entire audio cant all be this terrible... ha! It kept getting worse... sad disappointment...
It attempted to explain the www and maneuvering as if you were a complete idiot. Even a complete novice would be insulted.
I cannot believe the author has published more than one book... after my experience with www, i have no desire to checkout his other literary failures.
All around disappointment...
Dont waste your time or money / credits on this audiobook... you have been warned!!
Would I listen to this book again, probably not. It was not so deep that I think I may gleam more from a second time listening to the book. I did enjoy the book quite a bit more than I expected. Though truth be told I am a sucker for A.I. stories, or more accurately stories of spontaneous High Tech Life.
While listening to this book I developed the impression that my teenage nieces and nephews would enjoy this book. I recognize that this though most likely come from the fact that the main character is a teenager. Even so I recommend WWW:Wake to them, as well the adult in my circles.
For myself it was good enough for me to elect on completing the trilogy. Where before I had thought to just read the WWW:Wake and leave it at that. Wake did drag slowly in a few places and is predictable, but not in a way that detracted from the story for me.
It is a good and easy read. Enjoy.
I loved it! It was one of the best reads (or listens) in quite some time! This is an intelligent, engaging story and I could not put it down. If you like smart stories that make you think...this one's for you.
Intelligent, well thought out story. Leaves you thinking. The narration and production are superb. Greatly anticipating the sequel.
Way to go Audible!
Best-novel Hugo and Nebula Award-winning science-fiction writer. Audie Award winner for CALCULATING GOD. Author of FLASHFORWARD and 20 more.
On the premise of WAKE and the science behind it:
(1) see the article in the May 2, 2009, New Scientist entitled "Could the net become self-aware?" (also online at their website), which quotes among others Ben Goertzel, who is in the acknowledgments of WAKE;
(2) one might also find edifying the nonfiction book "The Web's Awake: An Introduction to the Field of Web Science and the Concept of Web Life" by Philip D. Tetlow, from IEEE Press;
(3) check out the acknowledgments in the printed version of WAKE for the list of experts who consulted on and/or reviewed my manuscript, including top people from Google, Sun Microsystems, and IBM (acknowledgments also online on my website);
(4) check out the June 2009 issue of the "Communications of the ACM" (publication of the Association for Computing Machinery, the world's largest educational and scientific computing society), in which I have a commissioned piece on the science behind WAKE;
(5) visit my website soon for the podcast of the invited talk entitled "Webmind: When the Web Wakes Up" I gave about the science behind WAKE on May 6, 2009, at the Center for Cognitive Neuroscience at the University of Pennsylvania;
(6) have a look at my editorial on robotics/AI in the November 16, 2007, issue of SCIENCE, the world's leading science journal; and
(7) be cognizant of the fact that prior to book publication, WAKE was serialized in ANALOG SCIENCE FICTION AND FACT, the top-selling English-language SF magazine, and the world's leading hard-SF publication, a place where stories not firmly grounded in accurate science simply don't get published. -- Robert J. Sawyer