3 out of 4 stars
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What would you do if you had the ability to travel through the pathways of the Internet and manipulate data? Alex Fine, an 18-year-old young man who has lived most of his life in an orphanage, faces this question in Superhighway. Alex is just a few months away from leaving the orphanage to attend Stanford University on a scholarship. One night, his life changes completely when he discovers that he can travel through the fiber-optic cables of the Internet. On top of that, he can manipulate all the data online and store it in his brain. After realizing he has a superpower, Alex becomes a digital Robin Hood. While stealing from international criminals to fulfill his philanthropic goals, Alex embarks on a thrilling journey that takes him to Europe, the Caribbean, and both coasts of the United States. As his coming-of-age journey is filled with the adverse effects of infinite wealth, drugs, and alcohol, his judgment gets clouded. Discovering the truth about his parents and ability complicates things even more. As a result, Alex has to deal with the severe consequences of his actions.
Written by Alex Fayman, Superhighway is the first book of the Superhighway Series. It is a science fiction and thriller book that consists of 248 pages. The story is narrated from Alex’s point of view, taking the reader on his journey. Fayman hooks the reader from start to end with his hip writing style, which breaths out a contemporary feel. Fayman manages this writing combination without using slang and profanities. However, the book could benefit from a quick editorial cleanup as I found numerous typos.
Alex’s character was my favorite element of the book. The story centers around the choices he makes after finding out he can travel through the pathways of the Internet. The reader sees how Alex changes from an intelligent bookworm who has never tried alcohol and drugs before to a progressive Robin Hood with junkie tendencies and a misguided sense of justice. As he deals with his childhood’s traumas and his new-found superpower, he makes questionable choices with grave consequences. The reader wonders if he is indeed a hero or a spoiled vigilante.
Superhighway discusses themes relevant to the present time, which I really liked. Alex steals money from international criminals and gives it to poor people because he wants to fight inequality. After Alex discovers significant truths about his life, he wants to restore justice. Inequality and injustice, for those reasons, are constant themes throughout the book. It is not a coincidence that Alex falls in love with Eva, a young woman who wants to become an attorney to give a voice to “minorities, immigrants, veterans, and disabled.” Alex’s conundrum lies in the fact that with great power comes great responsibility. Without a doubt, these themes remind the reader of the dangers of power and a misguided sense of justice.
I rate Superhighway by Alex Fayman 3 out of 4 stars because it was an exciting story from beginning to end. Alex is such an interesting character because his good intentions fall flat in many instances. The themes discussed in this book are of utter importance to the present time. Fayman did an excellent job bringing alive the problems and questions of the modern world. I could not give the book 4 stars as I wanted because of the numerous typos I found. Note that this story includes mild sexual content and alcohol and drug use. I recommend this book to young adults and adults who love science fiction, thrillers, and books with contemporary themes that put the reader to think about current issues. I cannot wait to read Superhighway 2 and Superhighway 3.
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