Wednesday, May 14, 2008

E-BOOK: Little Brother by Cory Doctorow

Cory Doctorow has a new young adult novel out, and it's pretty good. As usual, he's got a Commons-licensed e-version available.

As to the story...I don't want to give it away. I enjoyed it. I thought it was quite creative, and the hacker stuff was fun. But at times, it was a little too exposition-y for my tastes---the story would pause while the character would educate us on wi-fi, or Linux, or rfids or whatever it was. I know that his goal of educating his target audience on tech empowerment is a noble one, but it's so obvious that it takes away from the story a little. It reminded me of this episode I once saw of tween drama 'Degrassi' where the character goes to a party, experiments with a tiny bit of drugs, and disaster ensues. There is this moment at the end where she is confronted by her friends, looks directly into the camera and says something like 'I realize now that drugs are bad and it was wrong of me to try them.' Noble message, okay. But it smacked a little too much of 'now, the grown-ups will tell you what to do.' That may be educational, but it isn't 'literature.' It's a good story, and for the most part I think it succeeds as what it is. But it as not eclipsed Douglas Coupland's 'Microserfs' as my favourite 'coming of age, techie style' story.