Articles contenant le tag Daniel Suarez
Freedom is a solid sequel to Deamon and together they form a compelling thriller. For those that like big ideas and technological innovations you are in for a treat. No longer are big ideas and fully realized stories mutually exclusive. This is Michael Crichton meets Michael Chabon meets Joseph Campbell - ideas meets characters meets mythology. You do have to read Daemon first, but together they are a fun, intellectually stimulating joy ride through the near future.
The question on the future of our technologically-complicated world - does it have one? - seems to be DS obsession and maybe it should be everyone’s because dark times may lie ahead. Uncovering the answer or thinking of some viable solution seems to be Suarez’ life’s passion and he has the technical skills, the literary talent and the imagination to engage the reader.
Suarez’ premise is that we can’t keep going this way. We just can’t. Most resources are limited and they are being wasted away and so are our lives, increasingly lacking meaning and purpose. We live in an overpopulated and shrinking world controlled or manipulated by bloated, soulless corporations where increasingly totalitarian and violence-prone states and governments serving their corporate masters or serving the political class unquenchable thirst for ever more power.
Suarez attempts to answer 2 big questions: ‘do we have a future’ or can we even survive in this world that we built? And, ‘can we live free’ and what are the limits to our individual freedom and, given humans’ general inability to resist the temptation of grabbing and exercising power over their fellow humans, who is going to enforce those limits and how?
From Publishers Weekly:
“Starred Review. Bestseller Suarez’s sequel to Daemon (2009), in which the late, mad-genius game designer Matthew Sobol launched a cyber war on humanity, surpasses its smart, exciting predecessor. This concluding volume crackles with electrifying action scenes and bristles with intriguing ideas about a frightening, near-future world. Sobol’s bots continue to roam the Internet, inciting mayhem and siphoning money from worldwide, interconnected megacorporations out to seize control of national governments and enslave the populace. FBI special agent Roy Merritt is dead, but still manages to make a dramatic comeback, while detective Pete Sebeck, thought to be executed in Daemon, rises from the supposed grave to lead the fight against the corporations. What the trademark letters affixed to the title signify is anyone’s guess. Those who haven’t read Daemon should read it first. The two books combined form the cyberthriller against which all others will be measured.”
“Picking up a few months after the end of Daemon (2009), Suarez continues his popular technothriller and SF saga. The computer program Daemon has taken over the Internet, and millions have joined its virtual world. Now the effect is spilling into the real world as Daemon assumes control of financial institutions, and the program’s real-life converts flock to small towns to re-create a sustainable lifestyle amid the agribusiness monoculture of the Midwest. Despite a slow start, Freedom picks up speed by the second half with Daemon’s supporters and detractors facing off for the control of civilization. Only readers who have also read Daemon will be fully able to enjoy and understand Freedom, as most of the characters and plot elements are drawn directly from the previous story, and only so much backstory is possible, given the elaborate premise. On the other hand, Daemon fans will be well be pleased with the exciting conclusion, as will anyone who enjoys lots of gaming elements and virtual worlds in their science fiction. –Jessica Moyer”
By K. Sampanthar “Inventor of ThinkCube” (Boston, MA)
“Freedom is Daniel Suarez’s follow up to his 2008/2009 surprise best seller, Daemon. Last year I was blown away by Daemon. Suarez managed to write a compelling thriller around some big ideas. I have been a huge fan of Michael Crichton for years but I always felt his characterizations were weak and the big ideas were shoe horned into a thriller plot. Suarez stays true to the big idea and manages to weave a realistic plot with fully fleshed out characters and situations. This isn’t some made-for-movie screenplay, this is a fully realized thriller with deep ideas and a compelling story. I was sucked in from the first page and devoured the first book and left gasping at the end for the follow up. Freedom, just released, doesn’t disappoint (except maybe I was hoping for a trilogy). Freedom is a different kind of book to Daemon, the plot continuation is smooth, but the atmosphere of Freedom is very different. While Daemon was a techno thriller, Freedom morphs into a hero’s quest/mythological story. The technological ideas are still there and actually they are fully realized in Freedom. Suarez manages to flesh out the technological vision he alluded to Daemon. The convergence of life and augmented reality are smoothly juxtaposed to provide a glimpse of a near future. Suarez is a technologist and it shows. His use of current technology to create his vision is accurate and realistic. He explores the implications of social network theory, augmented reality, game design and ad-hoc network topologies to form a backdrop for a dystopian future. Even his underlying message of governments gone amuck are well researched and realistic; if a little paranoid.
These are tough questions and, if ‘Daemon’ deals mostly with the first question, not necessarily hinting at an answer, in Freedom(tm) there’s Suarez’ answer to both. DS suggests a solution to the survivability dilemma and he wraps it around an engaging, well written, technologically plausible action/techno-thriller Utopian-dystopia. Besides the how-to’s on avoiding the fate of the long gone Maya or Anasazi civilizations, many pages in Freedom(tm) are dedicated to chronicling the emergence of a radically new, technologically advanced but sustainable civilization while the old order crumbles and dies and not without a vicious fight. When it comes to personal freedom… it’s complicated but the author is unafraid to present us his own, intensely geeky but quite original solution.
In the good tradition of H.G. Wells and Orwell, Freedom(tm) chronicles the birth of a brave new world and the struggles and tribulations of a few humans who either play a role in facilitating it or are followed in the story so that we may witness their gradual transformation and evolution. Unlike ‘Daemon’ which was almost exclusively about about struggle, revenge and mayhem, ‘Freedom(tm)’, while keeping the carnage going, introduces us to ‘new growth’. Suarez did an incredible amount of research - how many fiction books come with a bibliography? - and found in himself the talent and the dedication to put together a new world. Yes, it’s Utopian and yes, it’s improbable. DS’ mix of open hostility toward the way we do things today is combined with a love/hate/hope/fear at what might become of us if we just keep going or stampeding the way we are now. Daemon and Freedom fascinating and stimulating reads. Can’t we too dream while reading this beautifully constructed and almost plausible story? Yes, we can and Suarez’ work is a great dream facilitator.
Had he tried philosophy, sociology or religion (as a prophet?), Suarez would have been quickly marginalized. His assessment of today’s world with its senseless but seemingly unstoppable march toward an almost certain catastrophic discontinuity would be ignored or summarily rejected. Today’s opinion makers avoid discussing or even thinking (the unthinkable?) of a future were very little seems to get ‘better’ and where an individual’s quality of life and personal freedom have ceased to improve or expand for a generation already and there’s very little hope left. Suarez did the right thing writing a book - two books. Works such as Suarez’ novels, movies such as Avatar, the very few real life heroes that refuse to compromise their freedom and integrity and do not trade away their individuality in exchange for some false recognition - thinking of people such as Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (I’m reading him now) or Stephen Hawking or even a politician such as Ron Paul - they inspire and challenge us to transcend our limitations and our inherent smallness and to dare ask questions and sometimes even to suggest answers. Daemon/Freedom are the literary expression of someone who dares suggest an answer. To the extent that these books are read and they make us think and more aware of the world we live in, Suarez’ effort was worthwhile.
My hope is that Daemon/Freedom will be read by many and, because they were read some of the readers’ lives will change, even in small ways. And, as some might have guessed, the hero I was thinking of - see my review’s title - is not a character in the book. I was thinking about the author. He is one of my heroes now.
And, since I mentioned Orwell and Wells a few paragraphs above, I am now wondering if Suarez is going to follow the path of Wells - a prolific and uncompromising writer not much read these days - or, like Orwell, say it all in a few books but not yet forgotten. ‘Nineteen Eighty-Four’ was Orwell’s last book and his peak accomplishment. Is Suarez already working on his next amazing tale of cybergods and freedom-loving humans battling today’s destructive and venal corporations and self-serving ‘authorities’? One can only hope but no matter what Daniel Suarez does for the rest of his life, he’s earned his place as one of my pen-carrying heroes, along with the likes of Solzhenitsyn, Orwell, Dostoevsky, Borges, (yes) Spengler, a few others”.
From John’s Blog:
“Since I read this two book series back-to-back (in about a week and a half — have been home sick), I figure it’s okay to post about both of them together. I first read about Daemon on Joi’s blog, and it sounded interesting enough to give a try.
Anyway, I liked them both a lot — probably Daemon a little more than Freedom (TM). They’re sort of a mix between Fight Club and World of Warcraft, with maybe some Blade Runner thrown in — lots of great ideas, lots of real implications of the technologies we all use constantly.
I will say that Daemon is the first novel I’ve ever read that included the syntax for a SQL injection attack on a web site — but maybe that’s just me.
There’s a lot of technical jargon for fiction, and lots of solid ideas about how technology works and what the future could hold — and clearly researched extremely well.
Anyway, they’re a fun couple of books — if you’re wondering what World of Warcraft grafted onto our own everyday world might look like, these are a great place to start. (That particular part gets a lot more pronounced in the second book.)”
From Bav club rating :
“Freedom™ is the greatest ever liberal utopian fantasy featuring autonomous killer motorcycles. Daniel Suarez’s sequel to his popular Daemon, the story of a deeply buried computer program that slowly takes over the world, Freedom™expands on some of the original book’s ideas of how using computer networks as a model for rebuilding society could work, and its vision of a program that turns the world into one big MMORPG is endlessly creative. But the book is also highly problematic, with Suarez biting off more than he can chew throughout.
Suarez has gotten lots of praise for how much he knows about technology. If you can get past the fact that the story’s central notion is patently impossible, Suarez gets everything else right, from near-future inventions to the nuts and bolts of hacking. And while there’s less of this stuff in Freedom™than there was in Daemon, Suarez also knows his way around the progressive political bookshelf, dropping in ideas and concepts pointing to everything from The Populist Moment to The Omnivore’s Dilemma. Again, once you get past some implausibility issues, Suarez knows his stuff, and he has a true believer’s passion for regional sustainability.
Unfortunately, “regional sustainability” isn’t as exciting a premise to build a novel around as “computer program takes over the world.” With most of the horrifying build-up to the revolution in his first novel, Suarez spends a surprising amount of time in the sequel having his characters talk about the virtues of direct democracy or non-factory farming or what have you. Since Suarez isn’t the world’s deftest writer, this consists of lots of scenes of characters standing around, declaiming large swathes of information at each other.
But there’s something so giddy about the way Suarez introduces his concepts or rips through an action setpiece involving a giant battle between privately operated paramilitaries and unmanned vehicles (occasionally equipped with swords) that it’s hard to stop compulsively turning pages, guilty-pleasure fashion. And just when it seems as though the novel is strictly an anti-corporate screed, Suarez adds in new wrinkles that suggest people with too much power can rise anywhere and hurt anyone. Freedom™is undeniably a lot of fun, but it’s too bad Suarez doesn’t write people as well as he writes machines.”
Pages: 416 p.