My review is based on a copy provided free from the author but is strictly my own opinion. In the year 2060, Raymond is a misfit who is sent to live in boys home. He hates his life and is taunted by the other boys. His one piece of solace is going into a virtual reality chamber that he has designed for himself. As it is the only place he is happy, he dreams of the day when he can "upload" his mind into a "perfect" world that he has created himself.
Raymond is extremely talented with knowing everything about computer security and how to get around controls and hack systems. He goes to work for a wealthy elderly man (Tate) and is able to hack into the systems monitoring Tate"s health. When the Tate starts having a medical episode, his monitors fail to work which Raymond immediately knows. He is afraid to call for help because the police will find out that he tampered with the monitors. As a result Tate dies. Raymond pretends that Tate didn't die and covers up his death that Tate had run off with a woman to live on an island.
Raymond uses the man's wealth to finance his own virtual world research. He eventually gets to work with a group on a project to upload life to virtual worlds with the ultimate goal of being able to upload a human. On the project he meets Anya, who is the first real woman that Raymond has ever wanted to have a relationship with.
Anya is attracted to Raymond too but his poor social skills (think Sheldon in The Big Bang Theory) get in the way every time. Raymond's ultimate goal in life is not to have the real Anya but to upload himself and to get Anya to join him to live in a virtual world.
The book is interesting throughout and constantly raises the question as to whether digital life can be considered real life and does digital life have any legal rights? I generally liked the book and found it hard to put down. I think that anyone with any computer background or one that has played some of the fantasy video games would like it. It is hard to say what prevented me from giving it the full five stars without creating spoilers. Let us just say that later on Raymond will find himself in situations where the explanation for what is going on was a little difficult to tie back or for me to accept as totally plausible. Also, I found it unreasonable how Raymond is able to bypass so easily some computer security.
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I first got on this blog to discuss my first passion which is books. Since I have gotten on I find that books are only a piece of this blog and I can discuss just about anything that comes to mind. It … more
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His criminal past catching up with him, a troubled young man seeks escape into digital utopia by uploading his consciousness into a computer - just as first love casts his life in a new light. In this thrilling near-future science-fiction novel, Mark McClelland explores the immense potential of computer-based consciousness and the philosophical perils of simulated society.