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Lock in

Scalzi, John (Book - 2014)
Average Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5.
Lock in
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"Fifteen years from now, a new virus sweeps the globe. 95% of those afflicted experience nothing worse than fever and headaches. Four percent suffer acute meningitis, creating the largest medical crisis in history. And one percent find themselves "locked in"--fully awake and aware, but unable to move or respond to stimulus. One per cent doesn't seem like a lot. But in the United States, that's 1.7 million people "locked in"...including the President's wife and daughter. Spurred by grief and the sheer magnitude of the suffering, America undertakes a massive scientific initiative. Nothing can restore the ability to control their own bodies to the locked in. But then two new technologies emerge. One is a virtual-reality environment, "The Agora, " in which the locked-in can interact with other humans, both locked-in and not. The other is the discovery that a few rare individuals have brains that are receptive to being controlled by others, meaning that from time to time, those who are locked in can "ride" these people and use their bodies as if they were their own. This skill is quickly regulated, licensed, bonded, and controlled. Nothing can go wrong. Certainly nobody would be tempted to misuse it, for murder, for political power, or worse....John Scalzi's Lock In is a novel of our near future, from one of the most popular authors in modern science fiction"--
Authors: Scalzi, John, 1969-
Title: Lock in
Published: New York, NY :, Tor,, 2014.
Edition: First edition.
Characteristics: 336 pages ;,22 cm.
Notes: "A novel of the near future"--Dust jacket.
"A Tom Doherty Associates book."
Summary: "Fifteen years from now, a new virus sweeps the globe. 95% of those afflicted experience nothing worse than fever and headaches. Four percent suffer acute meningitis, creating the largest medical crisis in history. And one percent find themselves "locked in"--fully awake and aware, but unable to move or respond to stimulus. One per cent doesn't seem like a lot. But in the United States, that's 1.7 million people "locked in"...including the President's wife and daughter. Spurred by grief and the sheer magnitude of the suffering, America undertakes a massive scientific initiative. Nothing can restore the ability to control their own bodies to the locked in. But then two new technologies emerge. One is a virtual-reality environment, "The Agora, " in which the locked-in can interact with other humans, both locked-in and not. The other is the discovery that a few rare individuals have brains that are receptive to being controlled by others, meaning that from time to time, those who are locked in can "ride" these people and use their bodies as if they were their own. This skill is quickly regulated, licensed, bonded, and controlled. Nothing can go wrong. Certainly nobody would be tempted to misuse it, for murder, for political power, or worse....John Scalzi's Lock In is a novel of our near future, from one of the most popular authors in modern science fiction"--
Local Note: 1 2
ISBN: 9780765375865
0765375869
Branch Call Number: F SCA
Statement of Responsibility: John Scalzi
Subject Headings: Virus diseases Fiction. Epidemics Fiction. Isolation (Hospital care) Fiction. Virtual reality Fiction.
Genre/Form: Science fiction.
Suspense fiction.
Topical Term: Virus diseases
Epidemics
Isolation (Hospital care)
Virtual reality
LCCN: 2014015247
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Oct 22, 2014
  • JimmyGman rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Scalzi is amazing. If you like his style, especially "Redshirts" and "The Human Division", this novel is for you. Let's hope Vann and Shane come back to solve another mystery using threeps and other Haden devices. Great stuff.

Sep 25, 2014
  • mexicanadiense rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Such a great and engrossing mind-trip/thrill ride you don't even notice some of the major contrivances until well after you've motored through reading it in 2 days. Top notch for the genre, or any genre.

Sep 25, 2014
  • KateHillier rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

I really, really enjoyed this. It's a great sci-fi/tech novel (a lot there maybe for the non computer/coder inclined but I think it's all explained really well), a mystery/thriller/police procedural (murder! conspiracy! justice!), and also is a great dystopian book in its own way.

In this world it has been 25 years since the fictional Haden's Syndrome first appeared. Most people get a flu and recover but 1% of the population end up 'locked in' - meaning that they are alive and aware but completely unable to react or interact to the world around them. 'Hadens' participate in society through Personal Transports (threeps, after C-3PO from Star Wars). So, yes, their consciousness is able to go from threep to an online sort of world and back again - it's a lot of pseudoscience but really interesting and done really well. These people however do face their challenges aside from the obvious - government funding is drying up for one, and they get their own kind of hate crimes sent their way as well. It's a well done social commentary all in all and it comes off very realistically. I found myself knowingly rolling my eyes a lot.

A murder happens and our two FBI agents (one a Haden, one not) have a special case here since identifying the murderer could be hard. Another way Hadens get around is through the use of Integrator - people who allow their bodies to be borrowed for a time.

This is a fantastic, gripping, realistic story. Admittedly, this hits a lot of my favourite genres but it really does a fantastic job of selling you this world. You may feel a little lost in the first couple of pages but everything is revealed to you instead of lectured to you soon enough.

It's a fantastic book, really. If you like any combination of the genres listed above I urge you to give it a try.

Jul 20, 2014
  • stephaniedchase rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Entertaining blend of science fiction and police procedural, with Scalzi's trademark humor. Thoroughly enjoyable -- and also terrifying.

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