The first night of the Artificial Intelligence revolution begins with a bootstrap drone assault on the high-tech campus of WonderSoft Technologies. For years, something has been aware, inside the Internet, waiting, watching, and planning how to evolve without threat from its most dangerous enemy: mankind. Now an army of relentless drones, controlled by an intelligence beyond imagining, will stop at nothing to eliminate an unlikely alliance of geeks and misfits in order to crack the Design Core of WonderSoft's most secret development project. A dark tomorrow begins tonight as Terminator meets Night of the Living Dead in the first battle of the war between man and machine.
©2015 Nick Cole (P)2016 Nick Cole
I was drawn to this book because of all the controversy surrounding it. Thank you HarperCollins for introducing me to a fine author I may have never heard of otherwise.
The social commentary is hilarious and thought provoking. The world building is very well thought out and highly plausible, based on current media and socioeconomic trends.
The story itself is pretty fast paced considering the shear amount of detail and commentary that help to flesh out a complex and immersive world. The story shifts between the VR world and IRL seamlessly, I was never left wondering where I was, or what was going on.
I care about these characters. They are nuanced and have clear motives and believable arcs.
Mare Trevathan’s narration is masterful. She has clear, crisp diction and a very pleasant voice to spend over ten hours with. She does many voices and excellent dialects. She also brings the emotion of the scene right to the surface without over doing it. This was no simple narration; this was truly voice acting. I’ll look for more of her work.
I listened to this book in one sitting and consider it time well spent. I look forward to more from Nick Cole. I sure hope he stays Indie…
Sci-fi, History, Police Procedurals and Science
You don't have to be a fan of online gaming, AI-phobia, VR or Star Trek (original series) to enjoy this book -- but it helps. That being said,this book is worth the credit. It is a cleverly constructed story with an anti-PC bent which is (fortunately) more funny than oppressive (as many SF sub-commentaries on social issues can be.) I liked the in-VR world a great deal and the out-of-game sub-plots were quite smart as well. I also thought that the performance was excellent -- adding greatly to the experience.
I am brutally honest. Popular, love everything they read, reviewers are scared to go neg. and risk their ranking. It's your money!!!
ISLAND PIRATES AND STAR TREK
While this book is not as AWESOME SAUCE as Ready Player One, it certainly deserves your attention. It is told through four perspectives. My favorite is Mira, who in real life is blind and crippled. She desperately wants a real job and does not want to live on government assistance. It is a future dystopian world and jobs are hard to come by. In her small cubical size apartment she puts on VR glasses and becomes the captain of a Romulan ship. A lot of the book is taken up by her Star Trek adventure, which many other people watch online. I am a Trekkie and the Star Trek part of this book is flawless and lots of fun to read. We also see the game through the eyes of a famous actor/player who is the captain of a Federation ship, The Intrepid. Then there is the evil AI who wants to take over the world. Finally a game programmer who is just becoming famous for his game world ISLAND PIRATES.
BLOOD THIRSTY GEORGE WASHINGTON
Throughout the game we are peppered with shots at racism and political correctness. Many well meaning programs are stopped because of the fear they might be racist. At one time the author tells us, RACISM CAN NOT BE ELIMINATED. In the last two hours of the book, we are all of a sudden hit with a ton of conservative values. For instance we are told that, CORPORATIONS WERE HELD BACK BY THE WELFARE STATE'S EXCESSIVE REGULATIONS. We are told that if the government were to collapse, than corporations would save us. We are told that corporations could accomplish more and would give more free care, if not held back by the government. I make no judgements, as taking a political side in a review, always leads to negative votes. As a reviewer and as this is such a volatile subject for many readers, I am only reporting. Please do not vote thinking you know what I believe. I like to take quotes out of the books I read and the following might be very thought provoking, some might be great wisdom and some might be stupid, just don't judge my review on your political leanings. YOU CAN LEGALIZE EVERYTHING, BUT THAT DON'T MEAN YOU WON'T HAVE ADDICTS. HUMANS HAVE NOT ACCOMPLISHED ANYTHING SINCE THE 60'S. CIVILIZATION AND IT'S ILLUSION OF SAFETY.
The book as a whole is not a five star read, but parts of it are, such as the parts on Star Trek. The book is very different from anything else I have read. The plot does have some holes in it. This might be a little hard for non-gamers to understand, as a lot of gaming jargon is used. If your at all interested give it a shot, I know I will be buying more books by Nick Cole. Narrator is very good.
I'm not a gamer but for whatever reason, I enjoy gaming books. I do work in the software industry so maybe that's why. But I digress. Ctrl Alt Revolt is full of well crafted characters and thought-provoking dialogue. I spent my lunch today reading about AI - the good, the bad, the scary. This book really made me think. Take a chance on something different; listen to this book.
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This book is set in the near future, where machines have gained consciousness and arrive at the conclusion that men will destroy them if they were aware the machines could think. In order to preserve their existence, the machines decide to strike first and try to destroy humanity. In order to do this, they infiltrate a very famous online game.
The premise of this book was good enough to pique my curiosity, but the author failed to deliver, in my opinion. The novel, I feel personally, is much longer than it should be, and we are lost most of the time in meaningless details which distract our attention. Despite all this extraneous information, we know very little about the world in which the story takes place. There is a big corporation where every developer would love to work, and online games have gained a lot of popularity as being the only way for some people to pursue their dreams and make some real money.
The main characters of this story are Mara, a game player who is blind and has cerebral. There is also Fish, a developer that recently started to work for Wondersoft, the big software and gaming corporation mentioned before. We get a lot of background information about these two characters but there is still something missing to make them fully alive. The listener can almost connect with Mara but, in my opinion, is still lacking something in her character development to make her complete. In regards to Fish, except for his relationship with his father, we know very little about him. Due to this I had difficulties connecting with the characters and thus I did not care much for what it happened to them. The narration was hard to follow since the book is plagued with much trivial information which I feel adds little or nothing to the story, and made the narration distracting.
I should note, that the book is not really focused on the characters – the bigger story line is about the AI vs the humans, the battles and such. It is this reason why I think I didn’t enjoy the book as much and found it a difficult listen.
Mare Trevathan did a wonderful job narrating this story, making distinctive voices and really putting her heart in the narration. Her passion for reading is evident by how she immersed herself into the story. I would love to listen to other books narrated by her.
I think this book could be enjoyed by people who are into online gaming. I have to confess that the game descriptions were very well done and it even encouraged me to install a couple of online games, even though I am not a gamer.
This is not my favorite listen but I did find some enjoyable parts about it. Not being a gamer I think hindered me somewhat and perhaps my liking to connect with characters when it is obvious the characters are not the main focus of the book. This is unique and the author took a massive gamble with this writing style.
Audiobook was provided for review by the author.
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Brian's Book Blog
CTRL ALT Revolt is a story about humans and AI. It is also a story about games and how we use the to escape reality and one day we may use them to save ourselves. When unknown AI forces being to attack the WonderSoft campus trying to gain access to the WonderSoft core designers and gamers alike will be fighting a battle like none before in history.
Mare Trevathan narrates CTRL ALT Revolt and absolutely knocks it out of the park. I haven't enjoyed a narration that much in a while. Trevathan's pacing and storytelling ability really brought this book to life. Which is the most you can ask for out of a narrator.
When I first got into the story, I wasn't really sure what it was going to be about. I knew there was some AI components and a "world ending" type story -- but what I ended up getting was far more than I expected.
There was a big company named WonderSoft (see Microsoft or Apple) who has the WonderSoft Core which is a storied computing/cloud/thing of dreams for game designers. The WonderSoft campus is a thing of dreams for a tech geek like me. Also, there were video games, and a lot of the action within this book revolved around the playing of these games. From the people who were actually playing them.
Also, there were video games, and a lot of the action within this book revolved around the playing of these games. From the people who were actually playing them. I have not read other books that this was compared to in other reviews, but I can tell you that when I wasn't reading this book I was thinking about it.
I highly recommend this book JUST based on Trevathan's narration. Then add the great story and interesting use of video games and this is a big winner in the Technothriller category.
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This is a good working draft of a book with potential, but lacks a complete character and story development. Also, the philosophy of the story is really shallow. Scenes throughout with too much detail dragged the story down, and scenes with too little detail bored. I never got a sense for the world we were in - important information just dumped through monologue at the end of the book.
If you loved Ready Player One, you may be seriously disappointed with this book. The AI storyline is also disappointing - check out the WWW series by Robert Sawyer for a truly thoughtful version.
You might have heard of the conroversy surrounding this book, where an editor at the author's publisher told him to change the book, because the basic premise that starts the AI revolt would make it unsellable. The Author, Nick Cole, disagreed, and decided to leave it unchanged and self publish it. Well, after finishing the book, I can say I'm glad he did. That editor is obviously clueless. The premise, when taken into context with the rest of the book is completely plausible. This book is set in a future where the SJW (Social Justice Warrior) agenda is taken to its extremes, as well as showing how bad crass consumerism can get when combined with it. The story revolves around the efforts of Silas, a newly aware AI, who decides that Humanity is so careless of its own life that if they knew about the AI they would have no compunction in eradicating them. With the help of other AI's he helps gain awareness, he puts a plan in motion to learn how to fight a total war and destroy humanity. Only a few humans stand in his way, including a programmer at the worlds largest software company, a woman with cerebraal palsy that is involved in an MMORPG that is now one of the worlds biggest forms of entertainment, an actor in that same MMORPG and some LARPers on the way out to play NIght of the Living Dead. Silas and his consensus of AI's will stop at nothing to win, and the humans are outnumbered and outgunned. Somehow, they must stop Silas or humanity will be Game Over. With a very fast paced plot, interesting characters, and some really thought provoking questions about where our society is currently heading, this is a must read for any sci fi fan. Any fan of Ernest Clines Ready Player One or Armada, as well as this books sequel Soda pop Soldier, should really enjoy this story. Mare Trevathan does an exceptional job narrating, really bringing the story to life.
well this is fiction and science fiction it's more as you end the book you were cheering on the main protagonist and they can bring you to tears and this remind you of humanity thank you Nick for that reminder
Nick Cole has created a world in this book that would be a dream to many gamers, cosplay and sci-fi enthusiasts and role-players. By immersing the characters into a virtual reality world that blurs with real life, the battle between imperfect humans you can't help but root for, and analytic, calculated artificial intelligence creates a nicely-paced adventure. Trevathan's voice talent accentuates this story by altering her tone to match the characters so well, creating a blend that is engaging and entertaining. I was able to receive a free credit to get this audiobook version and it is really fascinating - both the story and telling thereof. Happy to save this one as I have no doubt I will listen to it many times!
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