Amped by Daniel H. Wilson
Doubleday • $25.95 • ISBN 9780385535151
on sale June 5, 2012
Daniel H. Wilson’s Robopocalypse might have been the most fun I’ve ever had while reading a book. (And I think Steven Spielberg agrees—movie coming in 2013!) I found the war between humans and robots to be surprisingly unnerving and, quite frankly, it’s why I don’t use Foursquare. Because the computers can see you.
Wilson’s second novel, Amped, returns to the intersection of humanity and cool sci-fi technology, though it’s less likely to turn you into a crazy girl who keeps one eye on her cell phone (ahem). Amped beckons back to the Civil Rights era, when the definition and rights of American citizens were called into question.
The near-future U.S. is thrown into chaos when the Supreme Court rules that implanted citizens—Americans with special technology in their brains that allows them increased mental and physical abilities—are not a protected class. When “pure” humans turn against “amps,” Owen Gray finds himself targeted as a special threat. He soon learns that his amp is much more than just a medical implant to control his childhood seizures and that he possesses military-grade abilities far beyond his imagination. A war threatens to explode, and Owen’s the key to stopping the nation from ripping itself apart.
Check out an excerpt from Amped:
The city of Pittsburgh is in the middle of a major course correction. The rest of the nation is, too. The Supreme Court’s ruling has slapped about half a million people in the face. This morning, everybody with an amp in their head is standing, blinking into the light of a new day. Wondering what it all means.
I’m starting to get the gist.
Legalized discrimination. Around a hundred thousand amped kids being sent home from school across the nation. Nearly half a million amped adults wondering if they’ve still got a job. And a couple hundred million normal people, celebrating.
Sirens wail as a column of dark SUVs hurtles past me, long antennae see-sawing over potholes. At one point, a tubby, middle-aged guy sprints by, barefoot and panting and with one metal-laced plastic leg. His real foot hits the sidewalk, then his fake one.
Slap, clink. Slap, clink. Slap, clink.
I stop and watch the man until he’s gone. The shock of what I saw this morning is starting to fade around the edges, tickling and stinging. An acid knot of anger and sadness has wormed its way into the back of my throat and cornered itself there.
From somewhere nearby, I hear the repetitive, booming calls of a rally.
“Pure Pride,” they’re chanting. “Pure Pride.”
Will you check out Amped? What about the Robopocalypse movie?