Ted Cross s The Immortality Game tells about a girl named Zoya who gets a mysterious package from her brother not long before she finds him dead, and who then has to flee for her life from the mobsters that killed her brother.There is also Marcus who leaves Phoenix, Arizona for Moscow in search of that same package as it might help his dead father Javier Saenz who only exists in the digital world get a new body.Set in Moscow of the year 2138, which is far from a safe place, The Immortality Game makes a riveting technothriller where there s lots of action, tension and suspense Realistic and gritty, it s a perfect read for lovers of sci fi and cyberpunk.It would make a great movie, in my opinion Can t wait to read Ted Cross s future releases. The first line begins, Zoya hummed along to a pre dark times rock tune as she sketched a final line of purple lipstick onto the grossly fat man on the stainless steel slab It pretty much sets the tone of this science fiction thriller, and Ted Cross ability to wield words reminds me of Martin Cruz Smith, author of Three Stations, who has an equally torrid ability to bring life to black and white letters on a page I guess it s kind of eerie then that in my comparison, the first chapter begins in Moscow of all places But if you want something to come across as gritty, harsh, and cold is there a better place to start than Mother Russia In the Immortality Game, China and America West are racing to be the first to reach New Eden using ponderous space ships that will take centuries to bridge the gulf of space However, the Russians have a different idea A small and fast ship carrying a precious cargo of D.N.A.And therein is the answer to the question of how we can sail across the stars The plot doesn t seek to reinvent a spin on the creation of a FTL drive Rather, it s in the roots of modern science and a bold statement that space colonization will not be done by those who live now, but by those who have yet to be born.If you are a fan of Orphan Black, the idea of cloning humans from DNA samples, and aging them not only to create other humans but to give them a mind, then this is a book for you The Immortality Game is on the cutting edge of hard science fiction, and provides a solution to colonialism that s pretty original considering that I ve only seen it in use in Christopher Nolan s Interstellar This is a thrilling ride for anyone that loves exciting science fiction books.
DNF I don t know, maybe I m just not in the right frame of mind for this book I found it boring and each page I read I got distracted and found something interesting to do The different POVs really chopped up the flow too, and I already found myself groaning in the few first pages of the book You know what I m talking about It gets to a semi interesting part and BAM, change POV to something completely different I wasn t in the mood for that kind of crap I ll probably come back to it later, seeing as it s cyberpunk one of my favourite genres sub genres , but for now I m dnf ing it. I m not normally a quick reader, but I was drawn into the world of The Immortality Game from the opening chapter through the ending The futuristic setting was immediately and expertly introduced, and the female lead character, Zoya, had a good girl appeal from the opening dialogue with her roguish brother The world after The Dark Times is further built through the perspective of Marcus, the young son of a deceased millionaire who invented the program cure for the internet virus that hackers used to topple governments and cripple the business world The program also made possible a widespread addiction called meshing , which nearly destroys humanity to the point of extinction.This story is action packed, but has a steady pace that drew me completely into the world Although filled with cyber speak, it doesn t take a degree or interest in science or engineering to relate to the simple terminology If you ve watch the world news or own your own computer, you ll be familiar with slots, discs, wireless, clones, air cars, intergalactic space travel, and the concept that there is always a war somewhere Mr Cross takes exploratory technology of today, sets it in a world little than a hundred years in the future, and adds an intense twist to world politics and everyday game playing and vice.I enjoyed how the author took two average people who would likely never meet, and who have no extra ordinary skills, placed them in a situation to make choices between loyalty, family, and basic morality, and used the available technology and societal rules of the time to force them to rise to the challenges And who isn t curious about the inner workings of the Russian Mafia, and how normal citizens survive in such a hostile environment The Immortality Game gave me a sense of hope for the future, even while it listed the devastation of relying on the virtual pleasures of cyber space and cyber lovers, the loss of individuality and connection with people, even the loss of life Marcus deceased father integrated his genius mind into the internet and retains his basic personality while seeking the genetic compatibility of a clone body to restore his humanity, and he uses his world wide connection to protect his only son from the oblivion of meshing Zoya has hope of using the found technology to assist her in rescuing her brother, her friends, and her hope of having a child of her own Marcus is searching for his purpose in life and a reason to remain addiction free without the protective firewalls of his father s intervention.I think this story would appeal to readers who enjoy a little romance and technology in the story without it overwhelming the concepts of intrigue and the search for immortality I give The Immortality Game five stars and would definitely read titles by the author Ted Cross. I was attracted to this book by two things First, Ted Cross, the author, has spent serious time in Moscow, where the story is set, and currently resides in lovely Baku, Azerbaijan Second, just look at that cover It s from Stephan Martiniere, one of the premier SF illustrators Fortunately, The Immortality Game lives up to its cover Set primarily in Moscow in the summer of 2138, the book is the story of Zoya and Marcus Zoya is a Russian teenager, who by accident comes in possession of some military cyber ware Marcus is a twenty something American and former addict of The Mesh, an all consuming virtual reality place Marcus is also being led around by his dad or rather an AI construct that has his dad s memories and personalities Marcus s dad thinks that Zoya s cyber ware, or rather the folks that made it, can be used to download him into a real body Alas, said Russian cyber tech is valuable, and the Russian mob wants it Also, the world of 2138 is a radically different place, with what s left of America being ruled by the Mormon Church This basic setup leads to an action packed series of events, as the two young people struggle to survive Also struggling are the Russian scientists who invented the tech, and pretty much all of the good guys are way out of their depth While all of this action is going on, the author doesn t skimp on character building Everybody, from our leads to the Russian hit men and their bosses, has at least some character arc and development I have to say I also liked the ending The author has a chance to go with the conventional happy ever after ending but he doesn t, subverting it while not being a complete downer Zoya, Marcus and his dad all have substantial development, which leads them to some interesting places I also liked Mr Cross s eye for detail For example, his Moscow is full of poplar seeds floating like snowflakes in the summer breeze If you can t tell, I really enjoyed reading The Immortality Game. It is gratifying to me, and it comes along so rarely, that a story has the trifecta of important pieces, all developed well character, setting and plot Zoya and Marcus are everyman in different ways, Marcus in recovery from a Mesh addiction that escape to a fantasy world of his choosing where his body is stabilized in a bed and his head hooked into escape instead of reality , son of a very wealthy but mostly dead man who had managed to finally eradicate viruses from the online world Zoya is working poor in a place with DRASTIC disparities between people who can do pretty much anything they want and people barely getting by And Ted manages to give them realistic motive to get involved and realistic means to up their game to the necessary skills The setting is fascinating and seems realistic, given the distance in the future, and the plot is highly tense and comes together several PoV characters start in different places well.More than all this though, this is the first book I ve read in quite some time that was completely Un put downable I found myself reaching for it every chance I got Even if you are not a Sci Fi or Cyberpunk fan normally, the thriller nature of this and the great characters will pull you in.Note I received an advanced copy of this book in preparation for an author interview. Brilliant, intelligent, fast paced sci fi fun I picked up The Immortality Game and could not put it down Usually I read several books at a time, but nothing made its way into my reading time other than The Immortality Game and I read it in 1 3 the time it normally takes me to read a novel The author clearly has great strength in world creation and in making characters feel real, like they could be someone you know I love it when an author can make me feel that way about their characters, especially when we re talking a Sci Fi or Fantasy book.Zora is strong willed, with quick decision making skills as she first reacts with the stunningly cool and disastrous events that come her way And her male counterpart, Marcus, is what the everyman would be like when plunged into an awesome sci fi technothriller.I loved the futuristic Russian setting as well and also Cross descriptions of what other portions of the world have become.This is a book that quite simply, if you love Sci Fi or Thrilling reads, you just must pick up I m beginning reading Cross newest release, The Shard, today P.s On a side note, the cover is stunning