Tuesday, 6 August 2013

M T Anderson | Feed

Feed has a killer premise. It's set in the future, where everybody has a chip in their brain that flashes up banners and adverts, TV shows, films, the lot. The main character Titus goes to the moon with a bunch of friends where they meet a strange girl and all their feeds get hacked. There are some fatal consequences, this strange girl, Violet, and Titus' relationship blooms, blah, blah, blah. I couldn't wait to read it.

But right from the very outset it was hard to like, with language having been updated as well as the technology. Instead of saying 'cool', they would say 'brag'. The same with 'so' and 'meg'. So if you wanted to say 'that's so cool', which the teenage boy characters often did, they would say 'that's meg brag'. Without an explanation of what any of the many new terms meant, there were times when I had no clue what they were saying. Also, it had become custom for everyone - the President, news readers, everyone - to say 'like' all the time. Let's just say, I hope it never gets to that in the real world.

I found the plot to do something that I can't quite describe, that I found it did in Shift too. This seems to be when the plot is going strong, and then it veers off and focuses entirely on something else. In this case, to start with the focus seemed to be quite general, touching on Titus, his friends and now-girlfriend Violet, his family, where he went and what he did. However, after Violet became fatally ill, every aspect other than Violet seemed to just stop entirely. Hell, almost every chapter name in Part 4 is to do with the state of Violet's feed. Yeah, what was happening to her was sad and scary, but Titus spending all of his credit on slate-coloured trousers because he was unhappy was just a step too far.

There was one moment when I laughed out loud, and that was when a representative of the President was trying to explain how calling some other important person a 'big shithead' was actually a compliment. 

All in all, I give this a 3/5 stars, because the idea was great, I just think it could've been written better. Oh, and this book isn't for those of you who don't like to read vulgar language!   

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