- Paperback: 336 pages
- Publisher: Tindal Street (1 Feb. 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1906994315
- ISBN-13: 978-1906994310
- Product Dimensions: 15.3 x 2.6 x 23.4 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,300,407 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Game is Altered Paperback – 1 Feb 2012
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A highly original writer --Guardian
A fresh and authentic voice --Iain Sinclair
Hip, futuristic literary fiction about alternate-reality gaming. Cory Doctorow by way of Jennifer EganSee all Product Description
Top Customer Reviews
The books extrapolation of modern trends in technology and British society create an eerily believable possibility for the near future. The growth and importance of the online self was a particularly worrying aspect that Packer explored. After reading I had a strong feeling of wanting to connect properly with someone rather than shouting about the book online (however I have come crawling back).
Packer's characters have a depth that makes the supporting cast particularly intriguing. Lionel's adoptive mother, Judy, was a personal favourite whose personal development and story was fascinatingly seen alongside the primary narrative.
I would recommend this book to anyone who has an online presence, however large or small. Similarly anyone interested in family, identity, technology, immigration or the general direction our society may be headed should also pick it up. So many issues are thoughtfully touched on in a beautiful style that is great to read. Go on, add it to your basket, you deserve the time offline!
The story of Lionel is slightly sad, and incredibly real. It is set in the future, but not so far that it is out of the present day reader's reach - I expect that technology will advance in a very similar way to that described in the book. The characters are robust and complex, and I found myself deeply empathising with them. Yet, after feeling like I knew them inside-out, I was still shocked by the evolution of events along the way, and was genuinely surprised by the novels revelations. I like surprises.
I described the novel as 'gritty' in my title; as I mentioned, the story is incredibly 'real' and it does not skip the uncomfortable parts of reality. Packer approaches difficult topics surprisingly poetically. It is the detail, not just in these parts but the whole novel, that makes the book flow so well, despite having a complex story line.
I would recommend this to anyone who wants to read, and enjoy, a book unlike any they've read before, and I can't wait till my friends and family have read it so that I can talk to them about it!
What's kind of scary (in a thought-provoking way) is the picture the author is painting of the near future in the Western world. Survelliance everywhere, drones spying on people, refugees locked down in transit centres, capitalism even more out of control. About the only good thing is cars are pretty much gone and the motorways are abandoned. It just all rings too true that this is where we are headed.
I'd recommend this book for gamers who love to read fiction or sci-fi fans looking for an easy read. Mez Packer lectures in interactive media in the UK, so she's writing about a subject she loves. Her debut novel, Among Thieves was shortlisted for the Commonwealth Writer's Prize, so I'm betting she'll keep getting better and better with her writing.
Lionel was raised by an adoptive white family who never treated him as an equal - except for his adopted sister Lilith, his only friend, who keeps disappearing as soon as Lionel needs her. Lionel falls for the seductive Eve, but soon becomes obsessed with a young girl working as a trafficked prostitute in the `health centre' near his flat. But none of these women are truly as they appear, and Lionel begins to wonder which is more real: his own life, or Ludi's.
Themes of virtual existence, family tensions and memory overlap to create a rich, compelling novel. Although there are multiple plot-threads concerning technological and political issues, the emotional core is Lionel's search for the truth of his birth and parentage. Occasionally the twin narratives of Lionel and Ludi don't seem to fit together, but when they do align it's wonderfully clever.
The Game is Altered is a slick and emotionally affecting novel - proof that Britain's independent publishers are putting out some of the most exciting fiction around. Author Mez Packer and publisher Tindal Street are both ones to watch.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Love the way reality gets blurred in this book - which is the real world? Although it has a lot of game-world in it, don't be put off if you're not a gamer. Read morePublished on 21 July 2013 by Rozzi
very good pleased ( i will not write words that I do not want to write even to make it 17 words)Published on 10 Dec. 2012 by G. poa
Another fascinating read from Mez Packer. `The Game is Altered' is a face-paced, intriguing novel set in a slightly dystopian near future. Read morePublished on 24 April 2012 by F. Shelling
RIGHT,THIS BOOK I HAVE NOT GOT TO READ YET BUT MY SON HAS AND HE SAY`S IT`S OUT OF THIS TIME,?WHAT EVER,BUT HE TELLS ME THAT IT IS GOOOOOOD.Published on 21 April 2012 by Mr. Wesley Uprichard
followed amazons instructions to change the book over to the right one, but no joy, still have some naff book I didn't pay for.Published on 19 April 2012 by gr sinclair