The Beam: Season One [NOOK Book]

Overview

In the future, the Beam network has taken over our lives -- but now, it's developing a life of its own.

The year is 2097. North America has become the North American Union -- the only place on Earth not decimated by the environmental catastrophes of the 2020s. To protect citizens during the technological renaissance, the NAU erected the Lattice: an impervious net to keep the...
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The Beam: Season One

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Overview

In the future, the Beam network has taken over our lives -- but now, it's developing a life of its own.

The year is 2097. North America has become the North American Union -- the only place on Earth not decimated by the environmental catastrophes of the 2020s. To protect citizens during the technological renaissance, the NAU erected the Lattice: an impervious net to keep the so-called "Wild East" at bay. That was when the NAU began to regrow as a cyperpunk utopia ... ordystopia, depending on where you stand.

Today, the NAU appears to be divided into two political parties: the socialist Directorate and the capitalist Enterprise. But within secret circles, the true division of NAU power and wealth is more apparent: there is the Lower 99 Percent, who rely on The Beam to entertain and connect the nationwide hive mind ... and there is the Beau Monde, who control it.

Meet Micah and Isaac Ryan: Figureheads of power, pawns within a greater game
For the Lower 99, the choice between Enterprise and Directorate is simple. They can choose the security of Directorate: fed, sheltered, and provided-for by the government ... but unable to advance beyond their assigned (and modest) station. Or they can choose the potential and risk of Enterprise, where a few entrepreneurs and artists thrive, but many more die in the gutters without a safety net.

Micah heads the Enterprise party, blessed with family wealth that grew from rumored unsavory practices during the dystopian years. Isaac heads the opposing Directorate -- just as wealthy, just as enhanced with restricted Beam-interfacing upgrades much better than those widely believed to exist.

But both of the Ryan brothers ultimately serve an inner circle, with strings pulled from high above.

Meet Kai Dreyfuss: A prostitute assassin with aspirations to join the Beau Monde, harboring a cortex full of dangerous secrets.
Kai is eternally young, eternally beautiful, her add-ons suited to her dual careers in pleasure and espionage. Kai would do anything to ascend to the secret club she's learned is above her pay grade ... and her connection to Nicolai Costa (the power behind Isaac Ryan) gives her an unfair advantage.

Meet Leah: A girl with no last name, no past, and a hacker's mind in the body of a luddite.
Not everyone loves the hyperconnectivity of The Beam, although few are immune to its influence. Leah (young, dreadlocked, with a penchant for disobedience) lives a pair of lives between the Organa settlement that eschews technology and plots to disrupt the network ... and her prodigious ability to see behind The Beam's AI to the intelligence growing within it.

And meet Doc Stahl: A biological upgrades dealer who knows too much.
So far, the Beau Monde has kept its secrets under wraps and the true breadth of its power hidden. But Thomas "Doc" Stahl has stumbled into a place he shouldn't be and seen things he's forbidden to see. There are upgrades on the market far superior to those he's been allowed to sell -- and interests out there who are prepared to kill to protect their secrets.

But Shift is coming ...

The Enterprise and Directorate parties have always given people an identity ... and a "them" to resent so the true power balance can remain hidden. In the past, the chance for citizens to change their party (or stay in the same) for the next six years at Shift has been routine. But this year, the air is different. Riots are blooming. And this Shift promises to be anything but ordinary.

The Beam is part hard science fiction, part political thriller, part heart-pounding cyperpunk adventure, part techno thriller. Science fiction in the footprints of Asimov, where nothing is quite what it seems.

Choose your side. Select your destiny.

Plug your mind into The Beam. It's been waiting for you.
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Product Details

  • BN ID: 2940148757092
  • Publisher: Realm & Sands
  • Publication date: 7/17/2013
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Sales rank: 45,345
  • File size: 2 MB

Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 17, 2015

    more from this reviewer

    The synopsis for this book doesn¿t do it justice. It¿s only one

    The synopsis for this book doesn’t do it justice. It’s only one nano connection in the broad spectrum that is The Beam. Whether the topic is politics, technology, or the backstory of The Beam, the plot is always moving forward. In fact, it’s so chock full of constantly evolving plot lines and subplots that if you stop reading for too long, you need to really take a few minutes to remember where you were. Because of that and its addictive nature, this is a book best read binge-style.

    The characters are varied, ranging from a famous singer to political leaders to hippie rebels and beyond. You won’t find yourself wishing there was more diversity, and the character development is done slowly and carefully. It felt as if the technology introduced throughout the book, including The Beam itself, was its own character, with its own backstory, development, and mysteries. The Beam’s personification put this book well beyond the usual dystopian sci-fi bounds and dips into literary fiction in an unexpected way. I was very impressed with that.

    The one disclaimer I have to give is that there are parts that seem like the authors wrote them separately and didn’t review each other’s work – they seem to overlap in ways that don’t fit. Be patient. At first I thought there was some huge editing oversight, but later on I saw everything come together and make sense.

    The audio talent is good and plentiful with 12 narrators of very different timbres and tones. I’ve seen in many reviews that the voice of Doc is the most criticized, and while I found Doc’s voice to take a little bit of getting used to, I grew fond of him quickly and looked forward to his narrations. I did, however, feel that there were far too many narrators. While I understand the parallel of an epic amount of narrators with an epic technology thriller series, the sheer volume of voice talent confused me, especially as new talent was introduced well into the book, and some voice talent read the same characters in ways different enough from other voice talents that I noticed and concentrated on the difference. Any facet of a book or audiobook that takes away from the writing is less than ideal, in my opinion.

    In true Platt and Truant style, The Beam ends in a way no one could guess and leaves you hanging on an uncertain yet satisfying set of facts. A set of facts that will make you read Season 2, which I’m about to start doing right now.

    Audiobook provided for review by the author.

    Please find this complete review and many others at audiobookreviewer dot com

    [If this review helped, please press YES. Thanks!]

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 8, 2015

    This is simply the most realistic, vivid depiction of a probable

    This is simply the most realistic, vivid depiction of a probable future I've ever seen in any science fiction, ever.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 25, 2015

    SiFi with Many a Twist

    Read it and you'll want more!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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