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Saturday, February 13, 2016

Audible Book Review: Singular by David F. Porteous

This is a thought provoking and entertaining sci fi thriller.
Written by: David F. Porteous
Narrated by: David F. Porteous
Singular Audiobook by David F. Porteous Narrated by David F. Porteous
Length: 8 hrs and 54 mins
Unabridged Audiobook
Release Date:06-03-15
Publisher: David F Porteous
Genre: Sci Fi, Thriller
My Rating: 4.25 of 5.0

Publisher's Summary
In Singularity - the network that promises immortality to the rich - a creature is awakening. New virtual life is being created and is struggling to become free. But the growing power of this prisoner, this virtual god, threatens to destroy the world of the living.
Only a handful of people even know the creature exists. They need each other if they're to survive. But can they trust each other? And can they trust themselves when even life and death are no longer certain?
Dive into a nearly possible future where the real and the virtual overlap, and follow Patrick Clark into Singularity in this dark, comic thriller.
©2011 David F Porteous (P)2015 David F Porteous

The reader is introduced to Patrick Clark as he is being examined by a doctor for a lump. The description is personal with humor as a defense, setting a rather brash, but realistic tone to the story.

Patrick Clark is a Professor in a future time when the wealthy people do not really “die” but instead are transferred into a virtual life within a computer. If they have enough money people buy a spot in Singularity. Although Patrick has enjoyed his teaching, he hasn’t led a stellar life. He wasn’t ambitious enough for his wife and he never really connected with his less than brilliant children. His father is a constant companion visiting from Singularity and now Patrick has to decide if he will choose to move his personality into the virtual computer world.

Dr. Katherine Valentine is one of the systems engineers who built and maintains the growing Singularity network. She is struggling with the possibility that an entity in Singularity may be gaining autonomous control over the virtual world. She has asked the controlling board to institute some controls to protect the system but the board discounts her warnings. She becomes more concerned as she watches the evidence of increasing danger.

The “ghost” or being in the machine progresses in its fight for freedom while Patrick and Katherine are on a collision course to stop the massacre that may occur within the Singular system. There is suspense, humor and some surprising twists along the way.

The beginning of this story made me realize that it was a bit unusual. It is rather brash and gritty but I pushed beyond that. I enjoyed the excitement and philosophical arguments… even if I wouldn’t necessarily agree with them. The entity's view in the story adds a different element. Patrick and Katherine are two diverse characters and they get help from a determined journalist. Once again this is a sci fi story that includes irony to bring a thought provoking message to the reader. Definitely worth the read for those who like a sci fi thriller with suspense of a ‘virtual’ vein.

Audio Notes: The author, David F. Porteous does a great job presenting his work. It has the right - honest and humorous - tone for the characters, including the dangerous entity in the machine! The narration enhanced my enjoyment of the story.

I received this from the publisher through Audiobook Jukebox. This qualifies for my Audio and Alphabet Soup Challenges.

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