Socialpunk by Monica Leonelle
e-galley provided by author
Description from Goodreads:
Ima would give anything to escape The Dome and learn what’s beyond its barriers, but the Chicago government has kept all its citizens on lockdown ever since the Scorched Years left most of the world a desert wasteland. When a mysterious group of hooded figures enters the city unexpectedly, Ima uncovers a plot to destroy The Dome and is given the choice between escaping to a new, dangerous city or staying behind and fighting a battle she can never win.
I am not sure exactly where to start with this one. The premise for this novel just grabbed me and I had to agree to read and review it. I love - I mean absolutely love - cyberpunk. (Thank you William Gibson, Bruce Sterling and Neal Stephenson for giving me so many hours of reading joy.) The premise of this story felt like it was a continuation of what has been built into the genre already. That is basically what made me want to read it.
The idea that the main character of the story is part of a virtual reality and her world may or may not be real plays a major part of the story. I found the world created in Socialpunk to be unusually new and creative. I haven't read anything quite like it. I am still intrigued and really want to read more about the whole world - both the real and virtual world in the novel. I thought that Ima was an interesting character and the previous knowledge that she was created to live in the virtual world with all her strengths and weaknesses was just really cool to think about while reading. (Or is she real? Ah! So much fun!)
The story is fast paced with lots of action, dubious allies, shady villains, huge, probably evil corporations, rival gangs, conspiracies -- everything you could want for an exciting read.
The only thing I wasn't crazy about was how the book ended. There is a big reveal and cliff-hanger at the end that bugs me because now I have to wait to see what happens next and how it will be handled. I am looking forward to the next book in the series.