Saturday, June 30, 2012

Amped by Daniel H. Wilson

Amped is another book that I won from Goodreads. It is a near future science fiction story. It is a world in which some people have brain implants. Many of these implants are used to fix epilepsy, ADD, or other disabilities. They are even given to poor and disadvantaged students by the government through grants to level the playing field in the school systems.

Owen is a school teacher who has an implant to help with his epilepsy.  His father installed the implant after he suffered a horrible accident due to a seizure. Things begin to go wrong for Owen when the Supreme Court disenfranchises people with implants, also called "Amps". This action was pushed through by a political group called Pure Pride. In the course of a day he loses his job and is thrown out of his apartment with no warning. They can no longer makes contracts with "regular" people as they have an unfair advantage, hence Owen losing his job and home.

The situation escalates. Owen discovers he is wanted for questioning, and that his amp is more than he realized. There are also some violent incidents between amps and regular people. The amps are moved into clusters for their own protection. Owen flees to a cluster called "Eden" to meet with a friend of his dad's named John.

There is action, political intrigue, and social discrimination. Wilson uses his robotic expertise to help explain how the amps work and what they do to the brain. I really enjoyed the descriptions and the characters. It was a very fast paced and easy read, perfect for a summer day.

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