Thursday, June 05, 2008
Doctorow, Cory. 2008. Little Brother.
I'm not sure I can adequately cover this one. Wow. Really wow. Then again with Neil Gaiman saying things like, "I'd recommend Little Brother over pretty much any book I've read this year" and "It made me want to be thirteen again right now and reading it for the first time"... I'm not sure my input is needed at all. It's also got, for the record, Scott Westerfeld calling it a, "Rousing tale of techno-geek rebellion--as necessary and dangerous as file sharing, free speech, and bottled water on a plane." Those two names alone would compel me to give this one a go.
Set in the near-future, we see the battle between safety and freedom reach its climax. Marcus and his friends, four techno-geeks, happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time when terrorists strike the Bay Bridge in San Francisco. The four are taken prisoner by the Department of Homeland Security--not arrested, they just conveniently "disappear" without a trace. They are held prisoner for a week. At the end of a week, three of the four are released. Marcus, our narrator, is told that he's not "safe" yet. They'll be watching him. They feel sure that he must be a terrorist some way or some how.
Feeling the injustice of it all and grieving over the loss of his best friend, Darryl, whom he hasn't seen since the arrest, he vows to take down the DHS. Can he outsmart the bad good-guys by being a good bad-guy? Well, you'll just have to read for yourself.
Freedom. Safety. The Bill of Rights. The Constitution. Terrorists. Courage. Fear. The book is smart, very smart. And it's very effective. Though I know nothing about the world of computer coding and hacking, I could not put this one down.
I would think fans of Evil Genius and Genius Squad would appreciate this one.
You can download the novel here.
© Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews