Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Book Review: The Circle by Dave Eggers

Talk to anyone who thinks logically and most will agree, pooling resources is a great way to improve your chances of success in any venture. With research, the more information you gather, the more accurate your final results. With the Internet, the more computers networked, the faster the processing and the more information available. With HDTV, the more pixels, the more detailed the image. You get the picture. (See what I did there? Twice?)

Apply that logic a step further:
  • connected systems of digital healthcare records so whichever doctor you go to, they can access your records without having to subject you to a lengthy and expensive copying/faxing/mailing process.
  • traffic cameras connected throughout towns to help track car chase criminals.
  • tracking devices in pets so if they are lost or stolen, they are easily found.

I personally have no issues with these applications. Do you? Want to take the next step? Come on, you know you want to! Let’s go:
  • Sharing ALL medical records of ALL people in a digital cloud eliminating the need for expensive medical trials. Make them public domain so anyone anywhere can have access to them so experts across the globe can run computer trials and solve medical mysteries that individual doctors--even large corporations--can’t. This reduces the power of the big drug companies, reduces the need for dangerous medical trials, and gives us more cures faster!
  • Placing cameras in EVERY public location so any illegal activity will be tracked and recorded. People will know they are being watched, so they will act better. This will reduce crime. Crimes that do occur will be recorded from a number of different angles, reducing the need for inaccurate eyewitness accounts. Reduction in crime almost overnight!
  • Inserting tracking devices into children so NO child is EVER stolen or lost EVER again. Have it also track the medical stats of the people around them and the injuries incurred in the child so if the child is being abused in the home, the tracker will be able to tell the authorities who and when.

What kind of world do we have NOW my friends? UTOPIA I tell you! Perfection! An idyllic world of sharing information, perfect behaviors, and protected children! Everyone wants medical miracles. Everyone wants a reduction in crime. Everyone wants children to be safe. Are you willing to pay the price to get them? This is what The Circle preaches.

Are the characters in the book mind-blowingly awesome? No, but they are engaging. Is the plot twisty and unpredictable? No, it’s straightforward. I guessed it from the beginning, but I’m a suspicious reader. Is the book well-written? Yes, but I wouldn’t rate it the best book I’ve ever read. However, I do recommend reading the book to open your eyes to what is happen right under our noses.

Are you willing to pay the price for what you want?

You might revise your answer after reading The Circle.

What do YOU think? I’d love to hear from those who’ve read the book.


Next week’s main course on Revision is a Dish Best Served Cold: Typecast: The Difference Between Subgenres of Speculative Fiction and Why You Should Care

On the menu for the future: an interview with Margot Dill (Editor 911) about her new book Caught Between Two Curses , a review of Gravity Box and Other Spaces by Mark Tiedemann,

Also look for my articles on Walrus Publishing’s website.

Like Ghost Stories? I’m published in Rocking Horse Publishing’s Spirits of St. Louis: Missouri Ghost Stories. Check it out!