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The Rapture of the Nerds Hardcover – 4 Sep 2012

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 349 pages
  • Publisher: Tor Books (4 Sept. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0765329107
  • ISBN-13: 978-0765329103
  • Product Dimensions: 14.7 x 2.9 x 21.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 833,171 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

"mindbendingly entertaining... the novel is a surefire hit for genre fans. Fans of Adam Roberts' elegant, intellectually challenging SF will also be on firm ground here." --Booklist

Both Doctorow and (especially) Stross are writers who like to keep the ideas-per-page ratio as high as possible, and the level of inventive concepts thrown at the audience makes THE RAPTURE OF THE NERDS a thrillingly imaginative read. --SFX Review

"Rapture of the Nerds is a glorious ride, that will make your head spin and fingers keep wanting to turn the pages." --Nerd Like You --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

About the Author

Cory Doctorow is a science fiction novelist, blogger and technology activist. He is the co-editor of the popular weblog Boing Boing, and contributor to The Guardian, the New York Times, Wired, and many others. He has won the Locus and Sunburst Awards, and been nominated for the Hugo, Nebula and British Science Fiction Awards. New York Times bestseller Little Brother was published in 2008. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

2.5 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Chris Smith on 16 May 2013
Format: Paperback
Well, I'm a big fan of both Cory Doctorow and Charles Stross and so really looked forward to this book, hoping it would be the best of both of them: Stross's sense of humour and Doctorow's awesome futurology - for instance.

I have in the past several times sat down and read both of these authors' books in a single sitting, being unable to put it down. Sadly with this, it was quite the opposite, I kept finding displacement activities in order NOT to read it. It took more than a week.

I like the whole concept of 'The Cloud', Charles Stross has covered it before of course, but I don't think it was done enough justice here. You don't get the feeling that it's huge, or a revolution in any way. The story told is all quite parochial, and involves only a few quite random characters, many of whom don't really add to the story.

My biggest problem is actually the randomness, it seems like the story changed direction on a whim, with no real progression. At times it felt like the plot was just pinballing around. Lots of interesting philosophical points were raised, but then dropped almost immediately without being exploited.

I won't give it away, but the ending was a complete anti-climax, lots of loose ends and no real build up and release of tension.

I couldn't help comparing it to a book I read a long time ago: "Job" by Robert Heinlein. In that the protagonist also suffered a series of trials as he was whisked along at the whim of others into new and challenging environments.

It didn't stand up well against that 30 year old barely sci-fi book by a borderline nazi, and that makes me sad in so many ways.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By D. Harris TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 17 Sept. 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Huw is a technophobe, for reasons that become understandable part way though this book. However, he lives post-Singularity. Machine intelligence has fed on itself, starting a chain reaction which has boosted our creations into supergeniuses. Many humans have chosen to have themselves "uploaded" into the virtual world inhabited by the AIs, replacing flesh and blood with simulated instances of themselves. Immortality is promised. So Huw's is a hard position to sustain, but he manages, removing the wiring from his house and making pots for a living - until the day he is summoned for jury service, to help rule on whether a stray piece of technology downloaded from the godlike "cloud" can be permitted on Earth.

This is, of course, only the start of a series of fast moving and deeply convoluted adventures for Huw, featuring religious fanatics, a holographic djinn, Bonnie, his gender-shifting love interest - and that's only the start. It's rather as if Douglas Adams had torn up the first draft of Hitchhiker because it wasn't nearly weird enough. There are lots of allusions to coding, there's lots of metaphorical stuff about the cloud's hive-mind and ant-colonies, and comparisons between the great "uploading" and the so called "rapture" predicted by some sects. It's the sort of book that feels at times like it's trying to twist out of your hands. I wish that, like the AIs described herein, I could slow time (or rather, think faster) when necessary to allow me to absorb events. Indeed, the sheer density of ideas and events may be this book's main (only) flaw - especially in the third quarter, there at times the story completely lost me: most of it made sense in the end, but not all.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By D. R. Cantrell on 14 Jan. 2013
Format: Hardcover
I thought that Charlie Stross was like Christopher Lee: incapable of error. Oh how wrong I was.

Revisiting what used to be an old theme of his - The Singularity - and in collaboration with Cory Doctorow, who is one of the great up and coming writers (supposedly - I've not read any of his solo stuff), this should have been not just entertaining but a good read too. Unfortunately it ain't. While it's chock-full of ideas, they're not used well, being just splattered onto the page with apparently little concern for the results, amongst cartoon-like one-dimensional supporting characters and leading to slapstick results. I came very close to not finishing the book.

On the plus side, much of the writing is tight, clear and inventive, as you would expect from two established professionals, but that can't lift a badly plotted story. Not recommended, not even as a legal free download.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I'd been hearing good things about Stross for a few years but had never got around to reading anything by him, and I'd heard good things about Doctorow's Little Brother, so when this book presented itself I thought I could kill two birds with one stone, so to speak. Sadly, this was a mistake.

It took me a long, long time to finish this, mainly because the story just did not get moving until two thirds of the way through. Many, many times I picked this up but could only read a couple of pages before feeling sleepy or wanting to throw the book in the corner of the room.

I got the feeling the two writers had a whale of time concocting this pigpen of a book. They probably LOLed themselves silly emailing chapters back and forth, trying to impress each other, trying to make each other laugh, trying to see how extreme they could be.

The story, such as it is, once you strip away the pointless cyber-tech journalese, the clumsy references and criticism of modern society, and the arch drollness - oh, and if you can skip the first two thirds of the book which are quite ridiculous - is rather basic.

A hundred years from now the majority of the human population has transferred itself into the cloud (yes, just like the cloud storage people use now) which, for power, actually needs to consume planets. Huw is one of a small number of people left on earth. His parents long since left him for the cloud. He is chosen to represent the earth, to argue the case for the human population, when aliens come along looking to wipe us out because they think, given time, we'll cause trouble.
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