Rule 34

Rule 34

4.3 52
by Charles Stross
     
 

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Meet Edinburgh Detective Inspector Liz Kavanaugh, head of the Innovative Crimes Investigation Unit, otherwise known as the Rule 34 Squad. They monitor the Internet for potential criminal activity, analyzing trends in the extreme fringes of explicit content. And occasionally, even more disturbing patterns arise…
Three ex-cons have been murdered in Germany,

Overview

Meet Edinburgh Detective Inspector Liz Kavanaugh, head of the Innovative Crimes Investigation Unit, otherwise known as the Rule 34 Squad. They monitor the Internet for potential criminal activity, analyzing trends in the extreme fringes of explicit content. And occasionally, even more disturbing patterns arise…
Three ex-cons have been murdered in Germany, Italy, and Scotland. The only things they had in common were arrests for spamming—and a taste for unorthodox entertainment. As the first officer on the scene of the most recent death, Liz finds herself sucked into an international investigation that isn’t so much asking who the killer is, but what—and if she doesn't find the answer soon, the homicides could go viral.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Hugo winner Stross blends plausible near-future SF and crime in this brisk sequel to 2007's Halting State. In the mid-2020s, the police monitor the Internet full-time to prevent crime. In Edinburgh, this job falls to DI Liz Kavanaugh's Rule 34 Squad (whose name refers to the Internet truism that "if it exists, there's porn about it"). Kavanaugh views the position as a demotion, but she has a chance to get her once-promising career back on track when she is called to supervise the inquiry into the death of drug dealer Michael Blair, who was found dead on his bathroom floor, decked out in s&m garb. Her investigations are interwoven with the stories of an unlikely diplomat and a criminal known as the Toymaker. Each section builds on the others, making the whole more than the sum of its parts. (July)
From the Publisher
“The act of creation seems to come easily to Charles Stross…[He] is peerless at dreaming up devices that could conceivably exist in 6, 60 or 600 years’ time.”
The New York Times

“One of the most intelligently and philosophically detailed near futures ever conceived. Dazzling, chilling, and brilliant.”
Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review)

“A savvy, funny, viciously inventive science fiction novel.” Cory Doctorow, author of For The Win

"Entertaining and propulsive storytelling." Locus

Library Journal
Called to the scene of a gruesome and bizarre murder, Detective Inspector Liz Kavanaugh, head of Edinburgh's Innovative Crime Investigation Unit (the "Rule 34 Squad"), discovers a rash of criminal activities that span the globe and seem to be linked to a particular kind of Internet research involving sophisticated programs that target illicit cyberactivities. Faced with pressure from her department to curtail her efforts, Kavanaugh must weigh the importance of her career against the need to do what is right, regardless of the cost. VERDICT Stross (Singularity Sky) draws on tomorrow's technologies to create a story that features intriguingly offbeat characters and a labyrinthine puzzle of a plot. Fans of modern cyber-fi literature as well as technological thrillers should enjoy this thinking person's sf adventure.
Kirkus Reviews

Another detective joins the celebrated ranks of Edinburgh's finest, this one with Stross' distinctive science-fictional twist.

Set in the same universe asHalting State(2007) ten years on, the narrative advances several points of view, each written in the same eye-watering second-person present tense; it's supposed to feel like you're inhabiting several avatars in an online computer game—fine, but what if you just want to read a book? Murder is rare in Edinburgh, and the case of an ex-con spammer murdered apparently by bad drugs and a defective machine seems bizarre in the extreme, but DI Liz Kavanaugh soon notices similarities with other equally weird cases in Germany and Italy. And soon Euro-cop Kemal Aslan arrives with other examples. A second Edinburgh victim turns up, a shady accountant shrink-wrapped to a bed of obsolete currency. Meanwhile, the Toymaker, a (literally) psychotic enforcer and facilitator for a criminal network, the Organization, arrives to houseclean the current incompetent staff and recruit some fresh talent. First on his list of potential new hires is Liz's first victim, and the second—you guessed it. In a nearby pub, informatics professor Adam MacDonald, aka the Gnome, inventor of a spam-killer app called ATHENA, talks desperate ex-con hacker Anwar Hussein into becoming consular representative for a bankrupt ex-Soviet splinter republic—the sort of business the newly independent Scottish Euro-state is happy to encourage. Anwar's duties involve distributing free bread mix kits—and providing assistance to a certain John Christie, the Toymaker's current identity. Somehow, Stross ties it all together inside one of the most intelligently and philosophically detailed near-futures ever conceived, although at times the eyes of all but the most well-informed reader will glaze over.

Dazzling, chilling and brilliant.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781101516645
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
07/05/2011
Sold by:
Penguin Group
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
352
Sales rank:
137,648
File size:
585 KB
Age Range:
18 Years

Meet the Author

Charles Stross was born in Leeds, England in 1964. He holds degrees in pharmacy and computer science, and has worked in a variety of jobs including pharmacist, technical author, software engineer, and freelance journalist. He is now a full-time writer.

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Rule 34 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 45 reviews.
SteveTheDM More than 1 year ago
Rule 34 is the second of Stross's near-future police procedurals, taking today's information infrastructure into the next logical (significant) step, seeing where that leaves the police and the criminal world, and them pitting them against each other. This was fun. The thinking is twisted here, as our protagonist runs the "rule 34" squad in her police headquarters --- the guys who try to stamp out the most vile of online pornography. That's not really the focus of the book, but it sets a tone and lets you know that twisted stuff is not off the table. And it makes the first half of the book really (oddly) enjoyable. The narrative follows a few primary characters, and a handful of minor characters in Stross's now-familiar second-person form. The first time I read this style it really threw me off, but I'm getting the hang of it now and don't even really notice. As seems to be true of most books I read, the ending felt rushed; I think many authors see their deadlines approach and really speed through the back halves of their books. But the confusion I had at the end of Stross's prior "Halting State" didn't happen (he's either writing better, or I was warned and paid closer attention). But despite that all, this is a great picture of what-might-be sometime in the next thirty years or so. I like these glimpses of the future, when it's a future I might actually live to see, and Rule 34 really shines in that light. 4 of 5 stars.
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You werent one of the creators of rpg. They aare all the creators. So they made these rules and since you didnt make the rpg you cant add to the rules so yours dont apply!
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