4 out of 4 stars
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Agent Sliver is a highly trained secret operative for one of the ruling super corporations in the book World, Incorporated by Tom Gariffo. In the not-so-distant future, the U.S. government has reached a state of constant deadlock. When that results in the loss of confidence of the American people, the super corporations step in to assume that role of government for the people. Agent Sliver acts as the secret hand of the CEO of the super corporation World, Inc. When one of Agent Sliver’s assignments produces an unexpected variable in the form of a young woman named Kelly, he decides to keep her alive and take her under his wing to protect her.
World, Incorporated definitely falls into the near-future dystopian fiction genre. Due to the nature of the setting and thematic elements, I would classify it as a sort of economic thriller as well. The author spent a good bit of time creating news articles for the book to help show the progression and history that created the setting of the book. These articles and fictional history create a very believable world for these characters.
I also appreciate that the main character, Agent Sliver, was well drawn and complex. Even though the story is written in third person omniscient, it has a definite focus on Agent Sliver. As I read the book, I could understand both his internal and external conflicts very well. When the story jumps to one of the other characters, it jumps smoothly and in a way that advances the story and never felt jarring or unnecessary.
Gariffo covers some thought-provoking themes in his book. My favorite was the way that he questions what it means to be truly free. Agent Sliver desires freedom for himself and several of the other characters, but he has trouble formulating his definition into words. Throughout the book this question reappears. Each time it prompts both Agent Sliver and the reader to consider their definitions in light of the latest events. I really enjoyed this method of pushing me to consider my own definition of freedom.
From a technical standpoint, I thought that the book was well edited for its length. I managed to find a few small typos and missed words. There were several instances of strong language included in the book. The strong language did help paint the particular character and scenes well, so I did not feel that it was gratuitous. Violence was important to the book, since Agent Sliver is primarily an assassin, but I felt that the author handled the violence in the book tastefully.
World, Incorporated earns 4 out of 4 stars from me. Gariffo did an excellent job telling his story in a way that was both entertaining and thought-provoking. His book challenged me to consider current political events, economic stability, and the growth of corporations. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys complex dystopian fiction, especially the kind with plenty of action.
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