Published by Night Owl in April 2017.
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Buy from independent booksellers via Abebooks
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How I got this book:
Received a review copy from the author
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Solomon is rapper, a rhymer, a drifter. He heads an ecoterrorist organisation dedicated to stopping the global economy destroying habitats, polluting ecosystems, and creating synthetic biological organisms. The global economy is guided by quantum artificial intelligences (QAIs), who interface with people through the psi-q-net. Human beings, more connected with corporations than the natural world, shop the world towards ecological oblivion.
As runaway climate change and resource wars threaten the human species, Solomon and his ecoterrorist organisation create Gaia, a quantum artificial intelligence who has compassion. Gaia lives in the Quantum Dream, the collective unconscious of the world’s QAIs. Through the dreams of quantum computers and people, she influences the world to build a starship, New Hope, which will allow humankind to create an experimental ecocentric society on a distant world, popularly known as Dragonland.
Decades pass until, through a quantum quirk, Chaos, another QAI like Gaia, is spawned in the Quantum Dream. Chaos wishes to destroy humankind for its ecocide, and so infects Earth’s billions with the Blood Plague. Only those aboard the starship, New Hope, are safe as they lay in stasis, and travel to Dragonland. However, Chaos plots to defeat Gaia, and drive those aboard the starship insane through their dreams.
Can Solomon and Gaia stop Chaos from exterminating humankind? And can they then guide the star travellers to create an ecocentric society on a distant world, and save humankind from itself?
The overall plotline of this dystopian science fiction novel appealed to me as I am very concerned about the future of Earth and how humanity's actions are rapidly destroying so much of our planet. Crutchley has vividly imagined a society totally dependent on technology and in desperate need of a new planetary home. I loved his descriptions of settings and dreamscapes which range from the identifiable to the fantastically imagined. This book blends ancient mythology with science fiction ideas resulting in a truly unique landscape. My problem with it all however was that I frequently found myself unable to work out exactly what was going on. The overall arc made sense, but the twists and turns lost me so I appreciated the inspired prose of individual scenes, but without understanding their place in the main narrative. Admittedly I don't read much science fiction so perhaps a reader more familiar with the genre would find Quantum Dream easier to follow.
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Books by Nicholas Boyd Crutchley / Science fiction / Books from Scotland