Review of NANOCORPORATE by Rob Preece
A NOVEL OF THE NEAR FUTURE
BooksForABuck.com, February 2012
It seems like a routine mission for cop Olivia Jardan--investigate a biological failure in the exclusive centercity, assess and avenge any harm against an insured individual. But Olivia's investigation uncovers a split between the ruling corporate consensus and the Interfaith--the religious organization that controls the lives of the ordinary citizens. If word gets out that Interfaith Enforcers are assassinating ratepayers, the carefully constructed compromise that has replaced governments in a near-future America can be unraveled and that's something neither the leaders of the corporate consensus, nor the Interfaith can afford. Which means that Olivia Jardan needs to be silenced--forever.
The assassinated man led a group of designers trying to create something new--a "Freecode" project that would let anyone create designs--and in a world where virtually anything can be constructed from water and carbon from the air, intellectual property is central to the economy and power. Hunted both by her former mentor in the Police Corporation and by Interface Enforcers, Olivia hooks up with the surviving Free-coders and tries to stay alive--and to create something new. With the police close behind, Olivia takes to the sewers under Dallas, the advertising-filled skys, and ultimately the abandoned and crumbling exurbs of Texas, but there's noplace where the police can't reach and there's noplace where the Interfaith can't send their agents.
Author Rob Preece (see more BooksForABuck.com reviews of speculative fiction by Preece) extrapolates social technological trends present in the world today out into a not-very-distant future where governments have been replaced by profit-making corporations, where education (and police protection) are limited to those who can pay, and where both dreams and nightmares can be constructed out of nearly thin air.
Preece doesn't confine his efforts to predicting the future. With intriguing and three-dimensional characters, and a fast-paced story line, NanoCorporate grabs the readers and drags them into a compelling future world.
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