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5.0 out of 5 stars A Darkly Glorious Book That Pulls Few Punches
I sympathize with the reviewer who said that the first few pages of _Virtual Mode_ turned them off of the book. I was given this novel as a gift when I was about eleven or so; I, too, read the opening passage and was disturbed into putting the book away, not touching it again for another year. Yet once I really began to read it, I found myself drawn into a grim reality...
Published on May 13 2001 by Amanda M. Hayes

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3.0 out of 5 stars Not for me, but not intended to be, either
As a longtime fan of Piers Anthony, I wasn't overly impressed with this book, or the remainder of the series (although I haven't read it all yet, and I do intend to finish it). I didn't feel drawn into the characters, and the story itself didn't enthrall me. However, this may be mainly because I am not the target audience for this series; judging by other reader reviews I...
Published on Aug. 28 2001 by Stephen Haley


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5.0 out of 5 stars A Darkly Glorious Book That Pulls Few Punches, May 13 2001
By 
Amanda M. Hayes (Indianapolis, IN) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: 01 Virtual Mode (Paperback)
I sympathize with the reviewer who said that the first few pages of _Virtual Mode_ turned them off of the book. I was given this novel as a gift when I was about eleven or so; I, too, read the opening passage and was disturbed into putting the book away, not touching it again for another year. Yet once I really began to read it, I found myself drawn into a grim reality where even the wonders of magic cannot compensate for the horrors of the human psyche.
I adore the protagonists: Colene, the mentally and emotionally twisted young woman whose attitudes and perceptions have been skewed almost beyond recognition; Darius, a man whose rigid sense of honor threatens to strangle his chances of happiness; Seqiro, Prima, and all the rest. Their conflicts and challenges may not be the stuff of epic fantasy, but they're interesting and can give one food for thought. Most moving of all, at least for me, was the exploration of Colene's emotions, history, and motivations. Anthony doesn't whitewash her situation: she's a deeply disturbed individual, and one who has cause to be that way.
I must admit, though, that as much as I love this book, I couldn't recommend that children--or possibly adolescents--read it without reservations. The folk who've said that it's full of sex are right; further, there's blood, vulgarity, remembered rape, and a host of other such things. While they add to the power of the story, they might (or might not) be considered inappropriate for younger readers. I doubt my mother would have gotten it for me when she did had she known what it was really about... but then, I didn't have any problems understanding it and certainly wasn't traumatized by it.
It's also true that the heroine is awfully young for all of the sexual situations she gets into, and that one could see the portrayal of women as sexist if one really wanted to do so. I personally read and enjoyed the story without worrying about such things, but I think that anyone who says _Virtual Mode_ shows sexism just may have a point. (Anthony *has* begun to disturb me in recent years with his fixation on the sexiness of very, very young women, but that's a subject better reserved for a Xanth review.) If such things offend you, you may wish to give this a skip.
Otherwise, I can say with enthusiasm that I feel _Virtual Mode_ to be a wonderful novel, one whose story and characters have stayed with me for years. Readers who enjoyed Anthony's Incarnations of Immortality series may find this one especially appealing, as its resemblance to that saga seems much more pronounced than any to the perpetually punny Xanth.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Not for me, but not intended to be, either, Aug. 28 2001
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This review is from: 01 Virtual Mode (Paperback)
As a longtime fan of Piers Anthony, I wasn't overly impressed with this book, or the remainder of the series (although I haven't read it all yet, and I do intend to finish it). I didn't feel drawn into the characters, and the story itself didn't enthrall me. However, this may be mainly because I am not the target audience for this series; judging by other reader reviews I have read, adolescent females feel a very strong bond to the lead character, and the book seems to touch thier emotions on a very personal level. I feel this is one of Anthony's strengths, the ability to write very specifically to his audience, and reach them completely, even if this lowers the appeal for others. If you are not an adolescent female, or have not been one, this may not be the book for you. However, it may provide some insight into what motivates and interests today's female youth.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Where's the end?, Feb. 24 2001
This review is from: 01 Virtual Mode (Paperback)
I was enthralled at the beginning of this book, the suicide and depression were all too interesting for me to put it down, but then as it progressed the techno talk baffled me and I was looking forward to the end where I hoped the happy ending would be that they reached Darius' home. A struggle for me as it was my first fantasy novel and was bitterly dissapointed that there was no ending, but thats the way it is in a series I guess!!
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Traumatic but Beautiful Beginning, Dec 19 2000
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This review is from: 01 Virtual Mode (Paperback)
When I first started reading this book I was fascinated by Colenes suicidal compulsions; death was so beautiful to her, and to her the blood flowing from her wrists was so poetic. I could feel things with her, when she got tangled in the whirl of Darius' world, and her travels through the dimensions, and the relationship with her telepathic horse Sequiro. The story began to weave together beautifully.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A great book, Misunderstood by......, Nov. 27 2000
By 
Jonathon Kim (Somewhere in the US) - See all my reviews
This review is from: 01 Virtual Mode (Paperback)
Upon reading many of the review for this book, I have concluded that there are some people in this world that can not look past some of the inappropriate parts in this book. They stop at these parts and proceed to critize it as if it were to be an object of ridicule. This book is not an object of ridicule.
The first book of the Mode series, it is an ingenious introduction to a great series. Piers Anthony provides an appealing combination of fantasy and realism. Colene, as a character, will definitely attract readers who can relate to her experiances.
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1.0 out of 5 stars gag, gag, gag, Aug. 3 2000
By 
This review is from: 01 Virtual Mode (Paperback)
I eagerly approached this book as my sister, an Anthony fan, had been tooting his praise for some time. This was my first taste. Well, yuck! Does anyone have an antidote? This guy would embarrass a romance novel writer. How anyone would find the pathetic 14 year old, sexually active, suicidal, heroine, Colene, or the sanctimonious hero, Darius, interesting is beyond me. I can't imagine to whom this book is aimed. Certainly it is not for children as hardly a paragraph goes by without mention of sex and/or personal hygiene. Neither is the tone of the book aimed at normal adults. It must be aimed at Anthony fans who may give him a pass. Yuck!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Before it's time, June 23 2000
This review is from: 01 Virtual Mode (Paperback)
Long before the press talk shows or anybody else talked about the ugly secret of cutting Piers Anthony had it here in this book. Collene is very real and is a sounding board for millions of teenage and twenty someting females. More than once I myself felt like Collene was spkeaing things that I have often thought. Mr.Anthony is able to make this book so real by really listing to his readers and using his own story telling genius. From begining to end this book is great. An even though she is confused hurt and brash at times Collene is a rolemodel for today's youth becuase she is just like today's youth. She isn't water down to smooth things over and make things P.C. She is the voice of millions of girls who have wrote to the author and he responed by writing one of the most realist honest and heart felt charters ever put into a book. I've read this book many time and I love it more each time. I glad that the subject that are so "ugly" and swept under the rug were brought up in this book. I can't wait for book number four so I can find out how things turn out with Collene.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Almost a Virtual (Com)Mode, April 11 2000
By 
T.P. McArdle (Lincoln, Nebraska USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: 01 Virtual Mode (Paperback)
A plain vanilla, unimaginative tale. I recommend this only for teenagers and not for any one looking for elaborate, complex storylines. The story is basically girl hates world, girl meets boy, girl loses boy, girl and boy try to find each other, girl and boy are captured by a truly nasty person who is bent on domination of all realities. If you are squeamish about blood, you might also want to skip this book or at least skip those parts. I am planning to read the next two installments since I purchased them already. I do like Piers Anthony but this is not aimed at his more mature readers.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Virtual Mode is Here!, March 10 2000
This review is from: 01 Virtual Mode (Paperback)
This book is simply a great work by Anthony. His way of delivering the story is phenominal. The characters seem real and the way they are drawn together is simply amazing. I highly recommend this book to Sci-Fi enthusiaists and young adults. The sequels will keep you coming for more.
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1.0 out of 5 stars How do you get past the sexism?, Aug. 26 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: 01 Virtual Mode (Paperback)
I read some of the reviews online before getting this book. Some stated that the book was sexist, I thought that maybe these people were being a bit sensitive. After all, I enjoyed Anthony's Incarcations of Immortality series a great deal. I made it about one third of the way through it. I really couldn't read anymore about perky breasts or bouncing breasts or how the lead fourteen year old character wasn't wearing any panties, especially when all it did was take away from the story. This book was so bad that I cannot even think of buying another Piers Anthony book again.
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01 Virtual Mode by Piers Anthony (Paperback - Dec 1 1991)
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