Infoquake Paperback – Jul 7 2008
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From Publishers Weekly
Slick high-finance melodrama and dizzying technical speculation lift Edelman's SF debut, the first of a trilogy. Centuries in the future, humans rely less on machines than on upgrading their own nervous systems with nanotech bio/logic programs. Natch, a gifted young code programmer–entrepreneur obsessed with clawing his way to the top, jumps at the chance to merchandise a major new technology, MultiReal, even though he doesn't know what it is. Natch soon becomes a target for not just his business rivals but also totalitarian governmental agencies and more mysterious groups. Natch's being a borderline sociopath makes him extremely creative in business tactics and personal manipulation (and thus fascinating to read about). The world in which he operates is also fascinating, with awesome personal powers being sold on a frantic open market. Edelman, who has a background in Web programming and marketing, gives his bizarre notions a convincing gloss of detail. Bursting with invention and panache, this novel will hook readers for the story's next installment. (July)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
About the Author
David Louis Edelman is a Web designer, programmer, and journalist. Over the past ten years, Mr. Edelman has programmed Web sites for the U.S. Army and the FBI, taught software to the U.S. Congress and the World Bank, written articles for the Washington Post and Baltimore Sun, and directed the marketing departments of biometric and e-commerce companies. He lives with his wife, Victoria, in Washington, DC.
Visit David Edelman's Web site at: www.infoquake.net. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
Inside This Book(Learn More)
Top Customer Reviews
Natch's notoriety catches the attention of Margaret Surina, the master of the Surina Perfection Memecorp and owner of a mysterious technology called MultiReal. The Defense and Wellness Council wishes the technology gone. Knowing Len Borda, head of the Council, is planning her death, Margaret convinces Natch to join her. With enemies closing in, Natch and his people have only a few days to prepare MultiReal for demonstration and release to the public. To accomplish this, Natch will have to partner up with a past rival.
***** If a story can be food for thought, then this novel is a banquet! The story begins with a bang as Natch and his two apprentices strive to hit number one on Primo's.Read more ›
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Infoquake, the debut novel by David Louis Edelman, is the first volume of the Jump 225 trilogy. Its a financial thriller in a cyberpunk setting. Infoquake takes place several hundred years in the future, mankind has emerged from the decimation of the autonomous revolution thanks to the work of Sheldon Surina. Surina is the father of bio/logics, digital programs that work through nanobots, or OCHRES, which are spread throughout the bodies of most humans. Competition to create and sell new bio/logic programs is fierce, and Natch is one of , if not the best in the business.
The story starts out with Natch unveiling a Machiavellian plot to ascend to the top spot on Primo's list, the Fortune 500 of the bio/logic biz. This stunt works and even earns him the notice of Margaret Surina, the descendant of Sheldon. She presents Natch with the opportunity of a lifetime. She wants him to finish and sell MultiReal a bio/logic program capable of creating a near infinite number of alternate realities. The catch is that not only does every other Fiefcorp want to get their hands on this program, so does the shadowy High Executive of the Defense and Wellness Council, Len Borda.
The book is fast paced from the start, although the action is much more cerebral than physical. Plots and intrigues abound. Edelman creates a very interesting character in Natch. He has few redeeming qualities but the reader is drawn to him none the less. The supporting cast is very strong as well. I particularly enjoyed Jara, one of Natches apprentices. Edelman creates a rich narrative of a future earth. The back of the book is chock full of appendixes, which includes, a glossary, a time line, and in depth explanations of some of the most prevalent technologies. He is clearly a master at fleshing out his concepts. The story drew me in from the start, and I'm eagerly anticipation the forthcoming volumes.
8.5 out of 10
In his award-winning debut novel Infoquake, David Louis Edelman attacks the sci-fi genre and infuses it with his stunning vision of humanity's future. Sure there are splashes of other sci-fi subgenres in this book, a bit of cyberpunk here, some hard sci-fi there. But honestly, this book truly follows its own path as I delved deeper into the world of "Infoquake."
Set in a not-so-near future, the world as we know it has gone through a tremendous upheaval, only to rebuild itself into a cutting edge wonder of technological advancement and global interconnectivity. Earth's population has increased by a factor of 10, to the point that humanity has orbital colonies in space as well as settlements on the moon and the Solar System's asteroid belt. Software and nanotech corporations (or 'fiefcorps' as they are called) are the main driver of the world's economy, their owners the equivalent of celebrities in the public eye.
The industry that gets the most focus is bio/logics, which allows humanity to interact with nanotechnology to better their quality and length of life. The only thing is, at this point in time, humans are utterly dependent on bio/logics and it is actually considered taboo not to have any bio/logics hardware or software in your body.
Our protagonist is an immoral, workaholic fiefcorp owner named Natch, who has no life outside of his career. Despite the small size of his company, and his horrendous treatment of his underlings, Natch's bio/logics company is on its way up to the top of the Primo charts (the equivalent of a movie box office or Billboard Hot 100 chart for music). And when he does achieve his dream, albeit through despicable and underhanded means, this attracts the attention of not only his countless enemies, but also the heir to the technological revolution that brought humanity back from the brink. The heir in question, Margaret Surina, comes from a long line of technological innovators that have shaped the direction of humanity.
Now, she claims that her mysterious new technology, MultiReal, will do the exact same thing. So she enlists the help of Natch and his fiefcorp to belt out the technology into a usable product in less than two weeks. And he has to do this before his many enemies, including the head of the world government, get their hands on MultiReal.
Let me just say that this is a wonderfully written book. It kept me engrossed and riveted, with well-written dialogue and engaging characters. In addition, as an avid fan of world building, I loved the world that Edelman created. This book carved a brand new universe using alternate history, detailed imagination and Edelman's computer programming background. Whenever he described a character's usage of a bio/logic's program to hide their shock or enhance their body's functioning in any way, it was always fascinating.
What also added to the back story of "Infoquake" were the wonderful timeline and glossary that Edelman added, so one could never get lost or confused.
The issues I had with the book were minor, and kept me from giving this gem a perfect rating. For one, there was next to no redeeming qualities or true depth to our protagonist. I liked the fact that Natch was not a goody-two shoes and that we get a lengthy chunk of chapters that described why he became the way he was, but Natch was still far too unlikable. Plus, he had no life or personality outside of his career. The one thing he did that was not completely job-related was a regular pilgrimage to the Redwoods in the northwest, but this was done to ruminate about more business strategies.
Also an issue was one of Natch's subordinates named Jara. Granted, I loved how Edelman made her this kind of pathetic person who hated Natch as a boss yet would have had no issue if he mounted her and said "Let's get it on." But her opposition to each and every idea that could have provide advancement to the company she worked for could have been lessened as it became tiresome. Lastly, there was this 3D program called See-Na-Ree, which I could have done without.
Other than that, I wholeheartedly recommend "Infoquake" for anybody and everybody. I know I am just one of many who eagerly await Edelman's follow up novel to the fantastic Infoquake.
4.5 out of 5 spaceships
Edelman has succeeded in making the world of the corporate boardroom into an adventure filled narrative. What John Grisham has done with the legal thriller, Edelman has done with business. Drawing on his experiences in marketing and computer programming, Edelman has created a very thorough world, consistent and detailed. (A small portion of the book is appendices explaining the political and social structures of this trilogy, and more information on the setting of the Jump 225 trilogy can be found at Edelman's website.)
Infoquake is well-written and well-cadenced. The climax is fulfilling and exciting, yet it is only a speech, and a marketing one at that. Edelman has so well woven the elements of his plot together that Natch's simple speech has a much power and excitement to it as another science fiction story's destruction of a spaceship or a fantasy's evil overlord dying hideously at the hands of a hero. That takes skill to write, and Edelman has it in spades. I highly recommend this novel.
In this fascinating world of the future, a driven young man named Natch strives to dominate the bio/logic industry. Natch, with his end-justifies-the-means philosophy and unbridled egotism, is a hard protagonist to like at first, but an even harder protagonist to turn away from by the time you're midway through the story. We learn that his ambition is the product of a tortured childhood, and his vision and genius the stuff that has relentlessly advanced humankind towards perfection throughout the ages.
Besides creating a rich and believable vision of the future, "Infoquake" generates plenty of suspense without relying on violence and unrealistic plot twists. Instead, David Edelman hooks you with the kind of thinking-person's suspense born of high technology, corporate manuevering, and strong character conflicts. And unlike many techies who butcher the English language in penning their sci-fi visions, Edelman writes gorgeous prose. (His chapters describing Natch's awe for redwoods and his black-code trip are two prime examples.)
"Infoquake" is, in short, the best science fiction book I've read in years. If I had to fault one aspect of it, I would have to mention the slightly flat ending, though this is somewhat forgivable in the first of a trilogy. And with the solid groundwork established here, the next two installments will surely continue this talented author on his ascension towards perfection.