Byron Shaw can track and find anyone on Earth. Except the people who tried to kill him.
By 2081, privacy no longer exists. The Lattice enables anyone to re-live any moment of your life. People can experience past and present events - or see into the mind of anyone, living or dead.
Most people love it. Some want to destroy it.
Colonel Byron Shaw has just saved the Lattice from the most dangerous attack in its history. Now he must find those responsible. But there's a question nobody's asking: does the Lattice deserve to be saved?
The answer may cost him his life.
©2013 Erik Hanberg (P)2013 Erik Hanberg
I got this book for $1.99 after browsing for something inexpensive to listen to, being between credits and something of an audiobook addict, so I wasn't expecting much. I hadn't heard of the author or listened to the narrator before. I thought, "what the heck", so I got it.
As the title of this review indicates, the book was surprisingly good and the narration equally so. As this is sci-fi, you are just going to have to accept and run with the idea that the thoughts of people in the past as well as in the present can be accessed by anyone at any time by the Lattice. I had more trouble going with the thoughts of people in the past than I did with the present day people's thoughts, but the book concentrates mainly on the involvement of persons in the present, so it wasn't a big distraction.
There are a couple f-bombs scattered throughout and a few not-too-graphic sex scenes, but I did not find them overly gratuitous, frequent or offensive. I felt they were logical additions in the story. If their mere presence will freak you out, don't get the book. This is your trigger warning.
The Lattice is the ultimate VR experience which enables users to enter the thoughts of any person past or present without that person's being aware of it. We read of people's being so absorbed by their smartphones while walking that they bump into things or walk into traffic. The society of the near future has enacted helmet laws and developed self-driving cars to protect its members due to the pervasiveness of the problem. Sounds familiar.
Byron Shaw is charged with defending the Lattice when the book begins. The book covers how he came to be in that position and how the Lattice was developed in the first place and its implications for society. It's a pretty good social commentary on our dependence on or interaction with computers, smartphones, tablets and other technology right now. Byron eventually does an about-face and conspires to help its inventor destroy the Lattice. Byron is smart and decent, but not a superhero. He questions, doubts and struggles. He does things which have unintended consequences and has to live with them on his conscience.
The title indicates it's a trilogy, so there is more to come. I am looking forward to the next installment, although you could, if you wanted, leave off where the book ends and just ponder its implications. I will be happy to use a full credit to get the next book and hope it will be available soon.
Doug Mackey turned out to be a really decent narrator with a very pleasant voice and pace. I hope he will narrate the subsequent novels. I am going to add him to my list of "narrators to look for" when browsing for a new book.
The notion of a gizmo that allows people access to anyone else's thoughts --present or past--was just far-fetched. But the storytelling was excellent. So I will likely continue in the trilogy.
Just 1 rating and no other reviews? Wow, you guys are missing out! I've never heard of this writer before so I rolled the dice and scored. This is a very original, well written "classic" sci/fi novel set in the not to distant future. This book reminded a lot of George Orwell's "1984" involving the Government and privacy rights(or lack there of). The story flowed well and there was plenty of action to keep me from mentally "drifting" and getting bored with the book. Honestly, I don't think I pressed the rewind button one time during this listen and for me, with my screwed up wandering mind that's pretty damn impressive! There are no space battles or wizards in this novel, it's just a real good "old school" science fiction story. If fed-up citizens taking on the Government is your thing than you'll probably like this book. Oh yeah, the narrator(Doug Mackey) did a really good job with the character voicing. Can't wait for book 2!
I would have rated it 5 stars but for some odd inconsistencies in the last quarter of the novel. The group is attempting to take down the government Lattice system (think PRISM on steroids) and sees themselves as freedom soldiers (think Snowden on steroids and a can of Popeye spinach) rather than terrorists since while they targeted the Lattice system, they avoided taking any lives, if at all possible.
However, when they kidnapped a Lattice security agent in hopes of turning him to help in this effort, they informed him that he had a short period of time to gain their trust and failing to do so, by a majority vote, would mean his death. In the end, he betrayed their trust, almost uncovering them and costing hundreds of innocent lives. During the voting process, he was sure to lose but one of his champions challenged another trusted member in the group for essentially gross incompetence (think VA officials on ster..., oh, never mind!) The challenge held and so what was certain to be a 4-4 tie (ties are for losers) the agent gets a pass on a 4-3 vote. Oddly, the formerly trusted member who never betrayed the group, and seemingly for expedient sake?, is put to death rather than, say, confinement.
Still, it was an interesting novel and certainly worth the listen.
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