Synopses & Reviews
In Cory Doctorow's wildly successful Little Brother,
young Marcus Yallow was arbitrarily detained and brutalized by the government in the wake of a terrorist attack on San Francisco — an experience that led him to become a leader of the whole movement of technologically clued-in teenagers, fighting back against the tyrannical security state.
A few years later, California's economy collapses, but Marcus's hacktivist past lands him a job as webmaster for a crusading politician who promises reform. Soon his onetime girlfriend Masha emerges from the political underground to gift him with a thumbdrive containing a Wikileaks-style cable-dump of hard evidence of corporate and governmental perfidy. It's incendiary stuff — and if Masha goes missing, Marcus is supposed to release it to the world. Then Marcus sees Masha being kidnapped by the same government agents who detained and tortured Marcus years earlier.
Marcus can leak the archive Masha gave him — but he can't admit to being the leaker, because that will cost his employer the election. He's surrounded by friends who remember what he did a few years ago and regard him as a hacker hero. He can't even attend a demonstration without being dragged onstage and handed a mike. He's not at all sure that just dumping the archive onto the Internet, before he's gone through its millions of words, is the right thing to do.
Meanwhile, people are beginning to shadow him, people who look like they're used to inflicting pain until they get the answers they want.
Fast-moving, passionate, and as current as next week, Homeland is every bit the equal of Little Brother — a paean to activism, to courage, to the drive to make the world a better place.
"In this rousing sequel to Little Brother, Marcus has gone to college, dropped out, and is looking for a job no easy task in this near-future America's worsening recession. While attending the spectacular Burning Man festival, Marcus and his girlfriend run into Masha, a secret agent he met three years earlier; she hands him a data stick filled with governmental and corporate dirty secrets, telling him to release it if she disappears. Immediately thereafter, she is kidnapped by Carrie Johnstone, the uber-competent mercenary who is determined to reacquire the data stick and protect her clients. Returning to San Francisco, Marcus finds his dream job working for an honest politician and must decide whether to make public the explosive data, while dodging Johnstone and her goons. As always, Doctorow fills his novel with cutting-edge technology, didactic progressive messages, strong and somewhat snarky characters, and discursions that reflect his passions (a Wil Wheaton cameo? instructions on cold brewing coffee? why not?). Fans of Little Brother and the author's other stories of technophiliac hacktivism ought to love this book. Ages 13 – up. Agent: Russell Galen, Scovil Galen Ghosh Literary Agency." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
About the Author
Cory Doctorow is a coeditor of Boing Boing and a columnist for multiple publications including The Guardian, Locus, and Publishers Weekly. He was named one of the Web's twenty-five influencers by Forbes magazine and a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum. His award-winning YA novel, Little Brother, was a New York Times bestseller. Born and raised in Canada, he currently lives in London.