This novel shows us a world where our follower count and social standing is more important to us than our real friendships. Equal parts horrifying and entertaining the story is half Orla, a journalist in 2015, and Marlow, a 2051 “influencer” celebrity. Sometime between Orla’s and Marlow’s lives, an event was known only as “the Spill” caused the Internet as we know it today is gone, and Marlow lives in a completely different world. The government regulates all internet traffic, including entertainment, and Marlow has grown up in a Truman Show-like city called Constellation, which is an ongoing, immersive reality series. Both women yearn for more meaning in their lives, and each of their stories unfolds to show how they grow and change, while also revealing how they become connected over the years. If you liked Ready Player One and The Farm, you’ll like this one.
It’s much like a Black Mirror episode in that you’ll need to give it a little time to get going. I put it down twice because I could not figure out what it was getting at besides an- internet= lousy message.
This is precisely the kind of book that we read and discuss at our YA Bookish Society Round Table. Teen Round table offers kids the chance to hang out with like-minded readers and have grown up style delving and debate.