Bandwidth: science fiction thriller about networks of power and the power of networks
Eliot Peper's novel Bandwidth is a global technothriller that pits the barons of a world-spanning networking monopoly against the hydrocarbon barons who've manipulated the world's politics to let them go on boiling the world in its own emissions, and the lobbyists and shadowy resistance fighters who play them off against each other.
The story's hero is Dag, orphaned by climate disaster, raised in brutal foster homes, and then risen to ascendancy as one of the world's hottest young lobbyists, the man who helped a climate wrecker arrange to have the firefighters abandon southern California to its wildfires in order to land billions in refugee housing contracts and who is now poised to help the same oil baron repel a last-ditch global effort to impose a steep carbon tax.
Dag also reps the world's leading network monopolist, a company that mixes patrician civic duty to the internet's users with anticompetitive ruthlessness, making it both the world's trusted connectivity provider and the only game in town for most of its customers.
Dag might just go on this way, serving as a trusted court sorcerer to the unimaginably wealthy and powerful, but then he is drawn into a secret cabal of resistance fighters -- a cult of personality that has done the impossible, hacked into the network, hijacked the feeds of the world's power-brokers and manipulated them into slowly but surely backing the planet away from an extinction-level event.
Peper does a fabulous job depicting power and its trappings and giving a sense of super-powerful, super-competent sociopaths, who, despite all their ability to will to power, are simultaneously groping around in the dark, getting lucky, substituting brute force and absolute immorality for cunning and prescience, and steering the human race over a cliff as they do so.
It's a fine science fiction novel that grapples with power, consent, manipulation, equity, duty and friendship, where no one is entirely irredeemable and even the heroes need redemption.
Bandwidth [Eliot Peper/47North]
By the time Prince died in 2016, he had completed 50 hand-written pages of his memoir, titled “The Beautiful Ones.” The memoir, filled out with photos and other material, will be published by Random House on October 29. From the Associated Press: ″‘The Beautiful Ones’ is the deeply personal account of how Prince Rogers Nelson […]
Chuck Tingle (previously) has leapt into action with some of the most trenchant analysis of the Mueller Report yet seen: Redacted In The Butt By Redacted Under The Tromp Administration covers all the most significant details through an exquisitely crafted tale of gay pornography.
Guy Shrubsole is the author of Who Owns England? a forthcoming book that reports out a paintstaking researched data-set laying out, for the first time, a comprehensive view of the land ownership in England, finding that half of the country is owned by 1% of its people: a mere 25,000 aristocrats, oligarchs and corporations.
Seasoned chefs have a bit of a love-hate relationship with their cutlery. A really good set of knives has to prove its worth by being put through the wringer – and if they’re really good, they’ll still look great afterward. So it is with the Damasukasu Japanese 3-Piece Master Chef Hanshu Knife Set. Sitting in […]
With the intuitive software out there today, anyone can become a music producer. You’ve probably heard that from any number of laptop impresarios, but you still have to know how to use the tools – and Logic Pro X is one of the best platforms out there right now. In order to get the most […]
Believe it or not, PDF files have been the go-to format for contracts and forms of any type since 1993. And sure, they’re easily shareable – but that’s about it. When you need to edit or sign a document – and you will – that’s when frustration can set in. Luckily, there are workarounds, and […]