Monday, October 1, 2018

The Bookwyrm's Review of CTRL*Alt Revolt by Nick Cole

Author: Nick Cole

Length: 475 Pages/ 10 Hours, 2 Minutes (Audio)

Release Date: February7, 2016/ March 31, 2016 (Audio)

Publisher: Nick Cole/Castalia House

Narrator: Mare Trevathan

Series: Soda Pop Soldier, Book 0

You might have heard of the controversy surrounding this book, where an editor at the author's original 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, then publish it with a small press later. Well, after finishing the book, I can say I'm glad he did. That original editor is obviously clueless. The premise, when taken into context with the rest of the book, is completely plausible. This book won the inaugural Dragon Award for Sci Fi, so you have an idea who was correct in that decision.

This book is set in a future where the Progressive 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 cerebral 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 book's sequel Soda pop Soldier, should really enjoy this story. Mare Trevathan does an exceptional job narrating, really bringing the story to life.

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