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The Bell Curve: A Post-Apocalyptic Adventure (Assessor's Archive #1) [Kindle Edition]

Harry O'Connor
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)

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Book Description

He had years to prepare himself for the most important test he would ever sit. A test of life and death. Now he must face the dreaded Assessor's chair...

The Bell Curve is a thoughtful and exciting post-apocalyptic adventure that explores a barren world ruled by psychopaths and sentient computers.

Assessor's Archive #2, Sawtooth, is also available and both books can be ordered at a reduced price in the Sci-Fi Double Pack
Assessor's Archive #3, Noise, is in progress and will be out soon. Check out the author's blog for more information.

This is the 1st book in the Assessor's Archive series and is a novelette of 10,000 words, about 40 pages. Contains some strong language and graphic descriptions of violence.


Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 160 KB
  • Print Length: 28 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00AY4T7K6
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #376,538 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Harry is a massive sci-fi fan, both of books and of anything that can be viewed on a screen. Without a book he is totally lost and one day it occurred to him to start writing his own stories instead of just thinking them and forgetting forever.

Harry has released two books on Amazon so far, "The Bell Curve" and "Sawtooth", both loosely themed on intelligence and eugenics in a dystopian world.

One of Harry's favorite pastime is writing biographies of himself, like this one, in the third person. It makes him feel like a proper author to see a brief summary of his achievements written by himself on a web page. He must feel so proud right now.

If you would like to connect with Harry, follow him on twitter @Voodoochilli, I am sure he would like that.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars INTERESTING CONCEPTS WELL EXPLORED . . . 8 Jan. 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
(NO SPOILERS!)

'The Bell Curve' is a highly-creative short story with a unique take on what happens when (not if!) computers exert mastery over us mere mammals. (Face it folks, if Cambridge professors are studying the likelihood of this event, ([...]), we should all pay attention.

What intrigues with O'Connor's exploration of the themes of intelligence, assessment and virtual reality is that, smart as computers undeniably are, even they may not be able to predict the results of their meddling. One is reminded of Robert J. Sawyer's 'Neanderthal Parallax' which featured our near relatives interfering with genetic traits they wanted to weed out of future generations.

An excellent read and quite astonishing considering it is allegedly O'Connor's first attempt at a short story. The prose is sparse in places but this is most likely deliberate. There are no dreary attempts to flesh out this future society in painful brick-by-brick detail (take note Alastair Reynolds!) but like the cover artwork, the society is pencilled in a deliberately austere manner to allow your imagination to whirl when you have finished the story and turn out the lights.

What is not at all thin-on-the-ground is the assured afterword which details reading O'Connor conducted to gain an insight into some of the topics covered.

Overall, a stellar first effort - more please!

Dazzle
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Nicely presented short. 10 Jan. 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Well presented on the Kindle. Proofing, editing and formatting all seem good to excellent.

If you've read a review by me before you will know I have a soft spot for shorts/novellas. I love it when the story is everything and the rest of the words are stripped to their bare essentials.
Bell Curve is 95% there. Presented as a first short story that's an incredible achievement. To have honed and whittled away all the surplus fat is worthy of high praise.

I'm not sure why "Machina" is always painted as the big bad. It feels (to me) as if the right is subtly advancing little government causes via subliminal messages or something. I therefore rebel a little at the premise of Bell Curve but I have to accept it works as a humanistic construct. {Personally I don't believe machines will be as dumb as we like to paint them when they take over.}

For a diverting and quick read that continues to resonate after completing I offer my thanks. Hope you get the chance to give it a try. CW.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent 30 Jan. 2013
By sik80
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Highly recommended tale of a dystopian future. O'Connor expands on an intriguing concept that leaves you with plenty to ponder at the end. Looking forward to some more books from him.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Would you pass the Assessor's test? 18 Jan. 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A thought provoking insight to how humans may exist in a post apocalyptic era when resources are scarce and computers are in control. Centred around an intelligent individual seeking to extend his lifespan in a normalised civilisation. Can he pass the test?

A great read and just when you think you've got it figured out.....

I look forward to reading more stories from Harry O'Connor
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars good tale 10 Jan. 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Very well written and nicely baited to hook we intelligent beings (!). I hope for more soon from this author.
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