Fans of William Gibson, Jonathan Letham, and Richard K. Morgan will enjoy Strictly Analog by Richard Levesque.
What's a private detective to do in a future where nothing is private? That's Ted Lomax's problem. In the new California, a corporation runs the government, electric cars have drive tones, and a new technology keeps everyone constantly connected to the Internet. Almost everyone.
Disabled in California's war for independence, Ted is locked out of the new tech. Living on the fringes of society for years, he's found a way to turn his disability into cash: finding clients who need their info kept off the grid.
But when his daughter is accused of murdering her boyfriend - an agent in California's Secret Police - Ted has to dig himself out of the hole he's been in. To save his daughter, he ventures into a shadow world of underground hackers, high-end programmers, and renegade gear-heads, all of whom seem to have a stake in California's future.
It soon becomes clear it's about more than one dead agent. Solving the case might save his daughter. And it might get him killed. And it just might open the door to secrets surrounding the attack that almost killed him eighteen years before.
One thing's certain, though. Ted Lomax will never be the same.
©2012 Richard Levesque (P)2014 Richard Levesque
"...Fast-paced futuristic thriller..." (Publishers Weekly)
In a dystopian future, everyone logs in to the computer network through technologically integrated glasses. The catch is that you need both eyes for the signal to work, and Ted Lomax lost an eye years ago while fighting on California's side of the border war against a collapsed United States. Now he works as a private detective, making his handicap an asset. There are lots of people who don't want the attention that computer use would attract from the corporate government, so Lomax advertises his services with the slogan "strictly analog." But his life changes when his daughter is accused of murdering her Secret Police boyfriend. In order to clear her name, Lomax has to make a circuitous journey that takes him past every comfort zone in both reality and cyberspace.
Steven Jay Cohen's narration is flat and dry, which fits the noir tone of the book perfectly. I enjoyed listening to this book; I got through it in just a few days while commuting, and even found myself wanting to listen to it when I was home, a rare occurrence for me. If you enjoy noir-style mysteries and well-developed dystopian worlds, this book is for you.
This book is part Orwell's 1984, part Scalzi's Lock In (although this book came out before Lock In parts of it remind me of Lock In. I'm sure Lock In and this are not the only ones to have these elements to them anyway) and part... Crichton's Disclosure. Disclosure was the one with the virtual reality file storage system, wasn't it? Maybe a little ready Player One too, in terms of the dystopia where everyone is online all the time. Just without the 80's references.
Set in a world where everyone is connected to the internet semi permanently using something akin to Google Glass. Our hero, Lomax, is a war veteran private eye (aren't all private eyes war veterans?) who doesn't use the eyeware interface and prefer to do things old school. This puts him in a perfect place to investigate certain crimes and events because he looks at things differently and doesn't rely on just the electronic information.
The world it is set in - a post-succession war California, with police that verge on Orwell's thought police - is a great idea and I would be interested to read other stories set here. Levesque works through a lot of the implications and possibilities of this world, while leaving enough space to allow for more stories.
Non of the character or their actions struck me as unbelievable and the story worked pretty much organically other than one or two minor things. And those minor coincidences of story were not so much that I couldn't be just accept them and move on.
Would recommend if you are like detective stories and the possibility of where 'big data' etc is going.
Steven Jay Cohen is enjoyable as the narrator. probably a 3.5/5 but bumped to a 4/5 cost I cant do half stars.
The voice he gives for Lomax and the general narration (which is 1st person) suits the story very well. Give is an old time noir detective story feel and provides a world weariness to the character. I don't know if this is intentional or if this is the narrators 'resting' voice. i'll give the benefit of the doubt and say it is intentional. There are a few times the tired/weariness could have gone away as the character, in that moment, should have been showing a little more excitement than was given but generally it was enough.
A variety of small changes to accent and voice also differentiate characters enough to be clear on when who is talking changes.
A few small issues existed in the narration. I felt the gate of it was a little slower than most readers. This is fine as the audible app provides speed control. Occasionally there would be slightly longer pauses mid sentence that were a little off too. Most likely when the narrator was turning the page. Nothing major.
An enjoyable work of narration, I would be happy to listen to other stuff by Seven Jay Cohen.
Why did I purchase Strictly Analog? Well... at the time it was ranked pretty highly. Though now its just below 4 stars. It was on a recommended list. I cant remember which list I saw it on, but lord knows that person does not read very much. If they were impressed by this book, a vast universe of great titles awaits them.
First, I am a fan of Raymond Chandler, William Gibson, and future noir. Strictly Analog attempts to straddle this genre that Gibson & the movie Blade Runner kicked into high gear 30 years ago. It doesn't work. Why? Well because Levesque just does not know how to tell a story. I found myself thinking about why it just wasn't working here. Beyond the HORRIBLE narration decision by some producer, I figure it was how the author felt he had to describe everything to an extreme detail. The narrative bogs down in how Levesque describes one detail after another. Its slow. Now, I don't mind slow... I admire it infact. I think most authors are at their best when they don't focus on action and instead dive into character development. This does not happen. Its just details about the future world. And its not even that interesting of a new world. Its one you probably have read many times before.
I would shy away from this book if I were you. If you want something awesome, pick up Cryptomnicrom or Rothfuss' Name of the Wind.
yes to had many twists and turns and kepted you guessing to the end
I listen to alot audio books and this is a keeper i will look for more by Richard Levesque
An educator and senior who listens to his books from his phone through his hearing aids.
Strictly Analog is a Dashiell Hammett like mystery set in the near future. Corporations seen as people by the Supreme Court have gone from underwriting politicians to actually running for and becoming elected entities. Against this stark background our private detective does his sleuthing through a vastly expanded and more accessible cyber world controlled by the elected corporation. The hero must overcome corporate security forces, street gangs who communicate telepathically with cyber assistance, and sneaky fem fatals to save his daughter from a false charge of murder. In my opinion, this novel is better written than most other science fiction stories that exploit cyber technology.
I Love a great supernatural tale, a Love story, PNR, a Cool Mystery and Most Sci-Fi....if there are vampires, weres or witches in it, that's a plus! Basically I am a 40+ y/o young at heart woman rediscovering the wonderful world of books and am now addicted! Lol I LOVE AUDIBLE!!!!!
I would...I really liked it...its an interesting story, and a glimpse of a purposed futuristic world..
It was very well written..and I kept wanting more and more!
When Philly gets her avatar!
The end when Ted rescues his daughter, good thing he made those new friends...
** I was given a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review **
This was wonderful, I was dragged right into the story from chapter 1...and did not want to put it down....Ted is a PI...in a world of high tech gadgets, and virtual reality is all around him...he has an injury so he can not use a gadget called IYZ to be online 24-7 like everyone else...so he is strictly analog! When his daughter is arrested for a crime she did not commit, things change rapidly for Ted and he has to reach out for help from new friends and old to rescue her...and risks his life to do it!!!
LOVED IT!! HIGHLY RECOMMEND! GOOD NARRATION ALSO...TOTALLY FIT THIS CHARACTER TO A TEE!
The story has a very interesting premise, but to me, the story just fell flat on its face.
No. It's pretty slow. While the characters are sometimes interesting I found them very two dimensional
Yeah, I would.
Steven Jay Cohen was good. At times I thought it was very monotone, but his voice was silky smooth.....too silky smooth here and the audiobook just kind of blended together at times.
However his characterizations and his ability to breathe life into a dull world was worth the listen.
I received this audiobook in exchange for an honest review.
I love books! Big books, little books. Funny books, paranormal books! I really just want to live in a library!
old time radio meets the future sci-fi
Perfect. His voice fit the main character so perfect.
When he got a chance to see his daughter when she was in jail. I thought it was sweet that they couldn't talk but the still could communicate. It just made the father/daughter relationship feel more real.
I just 1st want to say Wow! This book was so good.
It starts off a little slow. Just like the character Ted was written until his life is turned upside down. Ted is a private eye in the future but doesn't believe in using technology. Until his daughter is accused of murder. Than nothing can hold him back working on her case.
This is a story set in a future America 18 years after Corporations have taken over the government. And you guessed it we voted them in. After we voted them in than we had a huge civil war. The 50 states are no longer. The laws have changed. There are basically two classes between the people. Your rich and running things or you are poor cleaning up after the rich.
The future technology that the author creates. It is amazing and scary! How would you like to only have to wear lens for surfing the internet or making a call for help. He was so genius to come up with the lens. I loved it. Until you find out that corporate plans to use them to control us. You got it. Nothing every in this book is what it seems. The author did an great job building us up all the way to the end. By the time you get have way through the book. You'll be on the edge of your seat. I really plan to listen to this again to make sure I didn't miss anything.
The narrator was great. His voice is perfect for a private eye character. He changes his voice perfectly between each character. Which really helps to keep you on the edge of your seat. He really brought out the emotions that the author was trying to prevail to us.
I highly recommend this audio book!
All of my reviews are on my blog audiobookreviewer dot com
Richard Levesque presents a compelling science fiction detective thriller in Strictly Analog, which finds P.I. Ted Lomax on the hunt for answers after his daughter is accused of murdering her boyfriend, an agent for California’s secret police. Injured in the war for California’s independence, Lomax is unable to use the Google Glass-like eye-wear that has proliferated across LA and keeps people connected to the net. As such, he specializes in the rare breed of off-grid detective work, advertising himself as ‘strictly analog.’
Levesque presents a corporate-run California where the gap between social classes has increased even further and the rich trip on a drug that mimics synesthesia, and where everyone is constantly connected. Lomax’s investigation takes him far off his usual beaten path of working cheating spouse cases and into the underbelly of a high-tech conspiracy and the burgeoning technology of transhumanism. The technology on display gives this technothriller a near-future feel and you can easily see the stepping stones to Levesque’s cyberpunk noir world in the here and now, and in the wake of Citizens United a corporate run government seems more than a probable eventuality. The story is kept grounded and rightly focused on the people, with the skewed relations connecting Lomax, his daughter, the dead boyfriend, and Miles, the head of the secret police and one-time war ally with Lomax, is a twisted little construct. The ancillary characters, too, help to reinforce the high tech-driven world, playing off today’s own eBay resellers and augmented big data hackers, while also acting as terrific foils for Lomax and his research.
The story is told through Lomax’s first-person perspective, and the narration by Steven Jay Cohen is suitably world-weary. Lomax is a tired, cynical man and Cohen’s slow and steady performance is a solid match to Levesque’s words. I was initially turned off by Cohen’s somewhat flat, monotone delivery, but adjusted to it well enough and actually found it be surprisingly well suited to the story. Although the narration is on the flat side, it’s actually never boring thanks to the crisp prose and the turns the story takes, and the interest-factor of the technology at play. Cohen perks up occasionally when delivering dialogue, and I caught myself grinning a bit at the energy he brings to the character of Sonny, an on-the-run hardware developer. The production quality is crisp and clean, making Strictly Analog a smooth and easy listen.
Those looking for a fresh mystery story with a dash of science fiction would do well to check this one out, and Lomax has all the makings of a mid-21st Century Columbo. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that Levesque brings him back sometime soon for a new case to solve.
Audiobook provided for review by the author.
Please find this complete review and many others at my review blog
[If this review helped, please press YES. Thanks!]
Report Inappropriate Content