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The Beam: Episode 1 [Kindle Edition]

Sean Platt , Johnny B. Truant

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Product Description

Product Description

Choose Your Side

In a grim future, choice is all you have

In 2097, the world is as perfect as you want it to be.

Choose Enterprise and the government stays out of your way, leaving you free to sink or swim — no help for the drowning.

Choose Directorate and all are equal, fed, sheltered and entertained by the government, every need provided for, and every man another cog in society's machine.

Every six years during Shift, citizens decide who they are. Enterprise or Directorate, lives are lived inside the North American Union, walled off from the rest of the world and the Wild East beyond the shell, enhanced by incredible A.I., nanobots that monitor and support daily living, and The Beam: the network connecting every human in the NAU.

New powers are rising as emergent technology blooms from an unknown source, and threatens to shatter peace and throw the nation into chaos.

What does the future mean when our present is stretched and reality blurred?

This is the first episode in the epic sci-fi saga, The Beam, by breakout indie authors Sean Platt and Johnny B. Truant.

WHO ARE YOU?

Choose your side. Download The Beam: Episode 1 NOW.


Product Details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 596 KB
  • Print Length: 154 pages
  • Publisher: Realm & Sands; 1 edition (June 18 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00DHEPVKA
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #6,063 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.4 out of 5 stars  59 reviews
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Ambitious Start June 22 2013
By Steve R. Yeager - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
After reading the first few chapters of this story, I nearly put it down. The large amount of information that was being transferred (beamed) to the reader felt much like the proverbial drinking through a fire hose. However, once that initial information was imparted, the story took shape, and the characters began to morph into solid forms. Forms which I found intriguing. And after reading the last chapter of this episode, I was hooked.

While this story has some aspects of newness, there were so many things being done that I'm now curious how the writers will pull it all off successfully. Take for example the two main political systems that represent two diametrically opposed philosophies; one Ayn Randian, where citizens are left alone to sink or swim; another, where nearly pure Communism reigns--along with mediocrity. Given human nature, I question how these two systems could possibly coexist economically, and what forces might be required to keep them in balance.

The Beam, and its incantations within the world are an interesting extension of the connectively of the internet, central processing, and something mysteriously nefarious. I was hooked there. But, the mystery of how it all works and what role The Beam ultimately plays in people's lives remains to be seen. I suspect an Oz hiding behind a curtain somewhere.

What I thought worked best: zero preachiness in the series, at least so far. The authors did a remarkable job presenting alternate and extreme points of view without bias.

What I thought weakest: the characters. I had difficulty connecting with any of them on a level other than a simple lens to see the world operate. If most lived or died, I wouldn't care one bit. Except for Crumb. He was by far the most interesting character. There were a few other minor nit-picky things with the writing, too, but what bothered me most was a feeling the story had been rushed and lacked necessary depth for such an epic level story. A little more depth and connection to the characters could have made a good beginning into a truly great one.

But, my criticisms are minor. My ultimate recommendation for those who like near-future-extrapolation-sci-fi stories is to buy this series and enjoy the hell out of it. Well worth the money.

Ultimately, I am giving this series four out of five stars because I think Sean and Johnny have started a very ambitious series and now have the daunting task of pulling it off well. If they do, I can easily rate this a five star ride.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It is scary how real this is. June 20 2013
By billdowis - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
We look back a few generations and are amazed at the prophetic vision of science fiction writers. I have a feeling my grandkids will be reading The Beam and be amazed at the prophetic vision of Sean Platt and Johnny B Truant.

Technology has saturated everything and everyone is wired to The Beam in one way or another. Episode one introduces us to some major players in the series and weaves them perfectly into a web full of suspense, drama, and action. The descriptions of the technology and politics of this world are vivd without being overbearing. While reading The Beam I felt as if I was immersed in the world and was exploring it for myself rather than being led by the hand.

Episode One is the perfect length. Long enough to contain several sub plots and main characters in great detail, but short enough to read in a day(or in one sitting if you don't have such interruptions as a job and kids.) I am looking forward to seeing where each of these characters are going and what they are doing. If the rest of the episodes are as good as this one we are in store for one hell of a ride.

Truant and Platt really hit a home run with this one. While I enjoy all of their other works (both as partners and on their own) this is the best piece of fiction from the pair.

Get the book now. My only wish is that the entire season was available today.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Beam me up Sept. 14 2013
By gaia - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Hate to give a low rating for 2 authors that I enjoy (I've read whiteout and yesterday's gone, and Fat vampire in their entirety) but this first part really didn't engage me as much as I hoped it would - I've seen the reviews of the first season and it's very possible that in its entirety it's a better read than it appears here. I did like the themes and ideas, and I like sci fi in general, I just wasn't sold on all the characters, and for a first 'chapter', you really need to hook your reader in. If a second episode pops up on the freebie list I might snag it and give it another go.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Flawed Potential July 20 2014
By J. Fuhrman - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I really hoped I was going to like this one. I love science fiction and there are many interesting things about the world the authors have created. So what was my problem?

I was TOLD about the world, not SHOWN. Each chapter is from the point of view of a different character, wherein most of the world of the Beam was told to me by way of interior monologue, and to the point where it felt unnatural much of the time. People don't always reflect about every detail about their profession or state of the world, and I felt this was the main problem with this book.

If it had been edited better and the world revealed through more action and less exposition, it would have been much more compelling. Now, I'm not opposed to interior monologue or exposition, it's just something that needs to be handled strategically. At times I felt like I was sitting down with a cast of characters and they were telling me why they were doing things rather than just doing them and the effects of those actions becoming apparent as the story went on. Exposition is fine as long as it comes up in short beats and feels natural. I want to experience a novel, not have it read like a series of interviews and history lessons.

I don't want this review to sound completely harsh because there is good stuff here. The world is interesting as are the characters and I wish I could get past the writing style and delve into the entire series. But I'll probably have to stop here. The sample was long enough and consistent enough for me to assume the writing style won't be changing. Some people aren't bothered by heavy exposition as is illustrated in the many positive reviews so if that style of writing doesn't feel jarring to you, then I encourage you to pick up the rest of the series.
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Be aware: episodes NOT self-contained; must buy more to get story Aug. 16 2013
By CarrieK90 - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Frankly, I prefer a complete story when I get a book. The best series keep you in the same universe and often have at least some repeating characters, but at least give you a satisfying ending, even if it leaves you wanting more. Breaking a story up just to make readers buy the continuation is shoddy.

There's some good writing here, with a minimum of copy editing errors. The premise is also wonderful (and real enough to be scary). This combination is enough that I was tempted to give another star, but there's a serious flaw: it's hard to care much about the characters, in part because we're whipped back and forth between too many of them, even while being given too little to help us really sympathize.

So will I continue with later installments? Possibly, if I can borrow them or they appear in the freebies list. Will I buy them? No.

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