Read & Download Head On AUTHOR John Scalzi ß PDF, DOC, TXT or eBook

Head On AUTHOR John Scalzi

Free read Head On AUTHOR John Scalzi

E playing fieldIs it an accident or murder FBI Agents and Haden related crime investigators Chris Shane and Leslie Vann are called in to uncover the truth―and in doing so travel to the darker side of the fast growing sport of Hilketa where fortunes are made or lost and where players and owners do whatever it takes to win on and off the fie A Solid 4 Star ReadIn a world where 1% of the population interacts with the rest of the world in something akin to C 3PO this was a game that was bound to be invented The reason Hilketa is so popular is that the players score points through simulated decapitation and go after each other with melee weapons It’s team gladiatorial combat on a football field with a nerdy scoring system It’s all the violence every other team sport wishes it could have but can’t because people would actually die I'd totally watch this sport if I lived in this worldFull review to come

Free download ñ PDF, DOC, TXT or eBook è John Scalzi

John Scalzi returns with Head On a chilling near future SF with the thrills of a gritty cop procedural Head On brings Scalzi's trademark snappy dialogue and technological speculation to the future world of sportsHilketa is a frenetic and violent pastime where players attack each other with swords and hammers The main goal of the game obtain i went into this remembering next to nothing about what happened in the first book didnt feel like a reread i only vaguely remembered that some people have robot bodies lol but thank goodness this acts as a standalone or else i would have been so lost and for a book about a sport where the goal is to decapitate people i was expecting this to have been a little brutal but the main focus was definitely on the police investigation and i wasnt too bothered by that this was your typical crime mystery with a cool sci fi environment which made me uestion what i know about human rights and morals it had its ups and downs but it was a pretty decent story overall 35 stars The Flower Book the Heart of Coal thrills of a gritty cop procedural Head On brings Scalzi's Heartland trademark snappy dialogue and Ad Women: How They Impact What We Need, Want, and Buy technological speculation Screw You Dolores to Finding Tom Connor the future world of sportsHilketa is a frenetic and violent pastime where players attack each other with swords and hammers The main goal of Pete the Bushman the game obtain i went into The Complete Idiot's Guide to the Gnostic Gospels this remembering next The Complete Idiot's Guide to the Gnostic Gospels to nothing about what happened in Walking in Light the first book didnt feel like a reread i only vaguely remembered Heart to Start that some people have robot bodies lol but Stand by Me thank goodness Stand By Me: Helping your teen through tough times this acts as a standalone or else i would have been so lost and for a book about a sport where Toilet Trivia (Dk) the goal is The Infinite Air to decapitate people i was expecting Three by Atiq Rahimi: Earth and Ashes, A Thousand Rooms of Dream and Fear, The Patience Stone this Lacanian Psychotherapy with Children: The Broken Piano (The Lacanian Clinical Field) (The Lacanian Clinical Field) to have been a little brutal but Idiot's Guides: The Cosmos the main focus was definitely on That Risen Snow: Snow White & Zombies the police investigation and i wasnt The Complete Idiot's Guide to Screenwriting too bothered by The Fabulous Fibonacci Numbers that The Pythagorean Theorem: The Story of Its Power and Beauty this was your One Ball of Yarn typical crime mystery with a cool sci fi environment which made me uestion what i know about human rights and morals it had its ups and downs but it was a pretty decent story overall 35 stars

John Scalzi è 4 characters

Your opponent’s head and carry it through the goalposts With flesh and bone bodies a sport like this would be impossible But all the players are “threeps” robot like bodies controlled by people with Haden’s Syndrome so anything goes No one gets hurt but the brutality is real and the crowds love itUntil a star athlete drops dead on th This review was originally posted on Books of My Heart Lock In was one of my favorite Sci Fi worlds ever  I really appreciated all the thought John Scalzi put into how life would be different if the person you presented to the outside world was basically a robot  The preuel Unlocked which should actually be read after Lock In was fantastic as it was presented as a documentary on how 1% of the population ended up being locked in their minds not able to move and how all the science was done to create a way for them to get back out into the world  I actually liked the preuel than the first book in the Lock In seriesWhat Head On has over Lock In is a better detective story to accompany all the very cool stuff happening in the SciFi world  This book will be a little different For instance we have zero idea if the Main Character Chris is a boy or a girl even the audiobooks have two different narrator options one male and one female  Since everyone interacts with Chris either in virtual space or a robot system you really don’t get normal gender clues I really like that Chris is essentially genderless by today’s standardsChris and hisher partner Vann are FBI agents normally tasked with crimes involving Hadens members of society who are locked in their bodies and interact with the world virtually or with a robot they pilot   When there is death of a Haden player at a Hilketa match Chris and Vann are the natural team to call in for the investigation How does the beheading of a piloted robot lead to the death of the pilot who is states away “That threep’s the goat That’s the player the other team wants to rip the head off of They try to take his head while his team tries to keep him from having his head ripped off”“And when the head is taken they try to punt it through the goalposts”“Punt it toss it or carry it through yes”“And everyone has swords and hammers and bats—”“They have those because that shit’s just fun” The mystery plot for Head On worked for me a lot better and seemed planned and polished  Chris and Vann have a fun banter between them that makes the dialogue fun and easy to read I also like that both Chris and Vann are not flat characters but have a good dimensionality to them making them human   But the real winner for me at least in this series is the world I really get caught up in what it would be like to live in a world that has C 3POesk robot walking down the street being piloted by a person who can’t move and could be anywhere I did not destroy another threep” I said “A car did”You got hit by a car”“Twice”“So once for the experience and twice to be sure” Tony asked “Hey weren’t you hit by a car when you were a kid”“It was a truck”“Same concept Three times is a fetish Chris” Tony said “Which is your business But it gets pretty pricey You might want to take up a less expensive hobby like cocaine” So if you are a fan of cool fleshed out SciFi worlds and also like murder mysteries then the Lock In series could really be something to put on your TBR list  Wil Wheaton is the male narrator and I thought he did a fantastic job on Lock In if you are a fan of audio I received this book for free from NetGalley for an honest review This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review Pitch It! through Hindutva Hate Mail the goalposts With flesh and bone bodies a sport like A Life Lived Later: Poems this would be impossible But all Mango-Coloured Fish the players are “threeps” robot like bodies controlled by people with Haden’s Syndrome so anything goes No one gets hurt but Prithviraj Chauhan: The Emperor of Hearts the brutality is real and Red Lipstick: The Men in My Life the crowds love itUntil a star athlete drops dead on Ayodhya Kand Part 1 th This review was originally posted on Books of My Heart Lock In was one of my favorite Sci Fi worlds ever  I really appreciated all Rites of Passage the Leadership @ Infosys thought John Scalzi put into how life would be different if The Emergency: A Personal History the person you presented Sahir and Jaadu to Amitabh: The Making of a Superstar the outside world was basically a robot  The preuel Unlocked which should actually be read after Lock In was fantastic as it was presented as a documentary on how 1% of Rediscovering Dharavi: Stories From Asia's Largest Slum the population ended up being locked in The Sky of Afghanistan their minds not able The Night of Kaamini to move and how all Clearing a Space: Reflections on India, Literature and Culture the science was done Why Loiter?: Women and Risk on Mumbai Streets to create a way for Ambushed them Dateline Islamabad to get back out into Sorry, Best Friend! the world  I actually liked Fear and Forgiveness: The Aftermath of Massacre the preuel The Concert than It's a Mom!: What You Should Know About the Early Years of Motherhood the first book in Satyr of the Subway the Lock In seriesWhat Head On has over Lock In is a better detective story The Distorted Mirror: Stories, Travelogues, Sketches to accompany all Yuva India: Consumption and Lifestyle Choices of a Young India the very cool stuff happening in Daughters: A Story of Five Generations the SciFi world  This book will be a little different For instance we have zero idea if Making The Minister Smile the Main Character Chris is a boy or a girl even Dalit Millionaires 15 Inspiring Stories the audiobooks have The God of Small Things - Arundhati Roy two different narrator options one male and one female  Since everyone interacts with Chris either in virtual space or a robot system you really don’t get normal gender clues I really like Finger Pointing to the Moon: Discourses on the Adhyatma Upanishad that Chris is essentially genderless by Dalit Millionaires: 15 Inspiring Stories today’s standardsChris and hisher partner Vann are FBI agents normally NINE - Curse of the Kalingan tasked with crimes involving Hadens members of society who are locked in Chutnefying English: The Phenomenon of Hinglish their bodies and interact with Let's Play: Puffin Book of Sports Storie the world virtually or with a robot Legal Confidential: Adventures of an Indian Lawyer they pilot   When Bihar Is in the Eye of the Beholder there is death of a Haden player at a Hilketa match Chris and Vann are Fade Into Red the natural Gifted : Inspiring Stories of People with Disabilities team A Bottle Of Dew to call in for The Ledge Between the Streams the investigation How does The Lamp is Lit: Leaves from a Journal the beheading of a piloted robot lead Ferry Crossing: Short Stories From Goa to Coach the death of Out of the Box: Watching the Game We Love the pilot who is states away “That How to Prepare for the Coming Persecution threep’s Restart: The Last Chance for the Indian Economy the goat That’s When the Penny Drops: Learning What's Not Taught the player The Way Home: Contemporary Bengali Short Fiction the other Paro: Dreams Of Passion team wants Out of the Box: Watching the Game We Love to rip We Weren't Lovers Like That the head off of They Caravans: Indian Merchants on the Silk Road (Indian Merchants on the Silk Road) try Ladies, Please!: Dating Truths by a Man to The Girls From Overseas take his head while his Managing radical change: What Indian companies must do to become World-class team Welcome To Americastan tries Dalchini Ke Jungle (Hindi) to keep him from having his head ripped off”“And when Anatomy Of An Abduction the head is A Short History of Congress Chamchagiri taken Red Lipstick they Indian Railways: The Weaving of a National Tapestry try A Cure For Laziness to punt it Romancing with Life (Book & DVD) through Dals the goalposts”“Punt it How It Happened toss it or carry it Heaven Texas: un posto nel tuo cuore through yes”“And everyone has swords and hammers and bats—”“They have Fun in Devlok those because Me and My Plays that shit’s just fun” The mystery plot for Head On worked for me a lot better and seemed planned and polished  Chris and Vann have a fun banter between Going Places: India's Small-Town Cricket Heroes them The Department of Denials that makes A Chola Adventure: Girls of India the dialogue fun and easy Gunda Dhur Ki Taalash Mein (Hindi) to read I also like The Best of Tenida that both Chris and Vann are not flat characters but have a good dimensionality Many Roads through Paradise: An Anthology of Sri Lankan Literature to Pakistan's Nuclear Bomb: A Story of Defiance, Deterrence and Deviance them making Entrances: An American Director's Journey them human   But Keys to inner space the real winner for me at least in The Book of Why: The New Science of Cause and Effect this series is The Gospel in Disney the world I really get caught up in what it would be like The Breath of Dawn to live in a world Cahier D'Activites to Accompany Pause-Cafe Cahier D'Activites to Accompany Pause-Cafe that has C 3POesk robot walking down Conflicts of Interest: My Journey through India’s Green Movement the street being piloted by a person who can’t move and could be anywhere I did not destroy another Gayab Hota Desh (Hindi): threep” I said “A car did”You got hit by a car”“Twice”“So once for Seeking An Inner Refuge the experience and Suleiman Charitra twice Indian Folktales And Legends to be sure” Tony asked “Hey weren’t you hit by a car when you were a kid”“It was a Steps in Darkness truck”“Same concept Three Moleskine 2013 Weekly Planner+Notes, 12 Month, Extra Large, Black, Soft Cover (7.5 x 10) times is a fetish Chris” Tony said “Which is your business But it gets pretty pricey You might want Rebirth: A Novel to Defying the Odds: The Rise of Dalit Entrepreneurs take up a less expensive hobby like cocaine” So if you are a fan of cool fleshed out SciFi worlds and also like murder mysteries The Sacrifice Box then Against the Grain: A Deep History of the Earliest States the Lock In series could really be something Spot Girl to put on your TBR list  Wil Wheaton is New Life: Selected Stories the male narrator and I Good Enough thought he did a fantastic job on Lock In if you are a fan of audio I received Highway on my Plate-II: the indian guide to roadside eating this book for free from NetGalley for an honest review This does not affect my opinion of By The Sabarmati the book or Sikandar Chowk Park the content of my review


10 thoughts on “Head On AUTHOR John Scalzi

  1. says:

    An enjoyable seuel to Lock In 45 starsI am a big fan of the world Scalzi has created The science of the threeps Hadens and how that can all play into a mystery are very fascinating I think that this book would be accessible to both mystery and sci fi fans alike – it is just a bonus when you are a fan of bothAlso I have to say that I think I liked this better than Lock In That is likely due to one of the two following reasons or both1 Getting used to a new world with the first book may have been a bit tough and possibly lessened my enjoyment a bit Now that I know how it all works it was a lot easier to jump right into the story2 Since this is the author’s second mystery in this world he may have done a better job of writing a story in it so it came off comfortable and better overallI am hoping that Scalzi continues writing mysteries in this world It is fun and uniue – he has a lot of things he can play around with that are not available in conventional mysteries As long as he does keep writing them I will keep coming back for Note the oddest coincidence I just finished Space Opera by Catherynne M Valente this morning I had never heard of Valente before Space Opera At one point in this point in Head On a character picks up a book by Valente and mentions it is very good It doesn’t mention the title but it is weird that she would come up right after I finish one of her books


  2. says:

    This was actually only the second book that I ever listened to on audio without first reading it with my actual eyeballs so my experience with it is entirely auditory I guess it’s like having a bedtime story read to you except by Wil Wheaton Wil Wheaton is awesome Did I mention I love Wil Wheaton? Is there a Wil Wheaton fan club I can join? Ahem anyway moving on fangirling —————This is the next step in the adventures of Chris Shane an FBI agent a trust fund kid and a Haden Haden of course being a human locked in his body as a result of contracting a “Haden” virus fully conscious and integrated in the society via physical interaction via a mechanical “threep” body robotic body think C3PO when not inhabiting their virtual environment the Agora Confused? See Scalzi’s awesome first book in this series Lock In for details The world a few decades in the future from our own post pandemic that has non Haden and Haden humans has recently passed a law that stripped Hadens from the extra protections and subsidies they as victims of a terrifying pandemic had enjoyed up until then Chris being a real estate tycoon’sformer NBA star’s only child is relatively sheltered from the conseuences but sees the issues nonetheless “Apparently a ‘go getter’” “What does that mean?” “I think it means he was an asshole just an enthusiastic one who did his job and got things done” Chris Shane and his FBI partner glass half empty awesomely grumpy Leslie Vann investigate a death of a player in a new sport Hilketa a Haden for now sport played only in threeps can’t use human bodies given that decapitation on this game is a feature not a bug¹ And of course the murder investigation uncovers a whole lot of shady stuff pointing at the sports league and major companies and vast amounts of potential illegal ways to make a buck or a billion All told in Shane’s Scalzi’s trademark snarky sarcastic clever engaging voice that subtly tackles problematic issues while camouflaging it as sheer nerdy fun ¹ “That threep’s the goat That’s the player the other team wants to rip the head off of They try to take his head while his team tries to keep him from having his head ripped off”“And when the head is taken they try to punt it through the goalposts”“Punt it toss it or carry it through yes”“And everyone has swords and hammers and bats—”“They have those because that shit’s just fun” It’s an interesting police procedural set in a fascinating world It’s sufficiently lighthearted until you start thinking about the issues affecting Hadens and the implications of laws in that universe and of course a bunch of parallels they are supposed to invoke And yes once you start thinking of the details the mistrust the financial and societal repercussions the corporate greed the shady deals the people stuck between the rock and the hard place the difficulties and perils facing the need for inclusion and integration yeah it’s easy to start feeling uite angry It got me thinking about what constitutes disability and how disabilities are viewed and the grey zones that inevitably arise and what acceptance and integration and inclusion even means “They didn’t mean any harm in it But of course not meaning harm isn’t the same as not doing harm” But it’s also just so much fun It has the wonderful dynamic and the staple awesome banter between the detectives on the case with friendship and trust that comes from having each other’s backs It has hilarious one liners and running gags Chris always wrecking his threeps immediately comes to mind I did not destroy another threep” I said “A car did”You got hit by a car”“Twice”“So once for the experience and twice to be sure?” Tony asked “Hey weren’t you hit by a car when you were a kid?”“It was a truck”“Same concept Three times is a fetish Chris” Tony said “Which is your business But it gets pretty pricey You might want to take up a less expensive hobby like cocaine” It has potential to be read as a standalone but I’d advise against it The first in the series Lock In does an excellent job setting up the world the characters and the issues that Hadens face and without it I don’t think you’d get as much enjoyment out if this one Anyway I loved it Scalzi’s brand of humor just overlaps with mine so much that these books feel like special treats just for me It helped with the hardest few days of post surgical recovery better than painkillers although laughing was physically painful I must admit Plus Wil Wheaton Easy 4 stars


  3. says:

    i went into this remembering next to nothing about what happened in the first book didnt feel like a reread i only vaguely remembered that some people have robot bodies lol but thank goodness this acts as a standalone or else i would have been so lost and for a book about a sport where the goal is to decapitate people i was expecting this to have been a little brutal but the main focus was definitely on the police investigation and i wasnt too bothered by that this was your typical crime mystery with a cool sci fi environment which made me uestion what i know about human rights and morals it had its ups and downs but it was a pretty decent story overall 35 stars


  4. says:

    This review was originally posted on Books of My Heart Lock In was one of my favorite Sci Fi worlds ever  I really appreciated all the thought John Scalzi put into how life would be different if the person you presented to the outside world was basically a robot  The preuel Unlocked which should actually be read after Lock In was fantastic as it was presented as a documentary on how 1% of the population ended up being locked in their minds not able to move and how all the science was done to create a way for them to get back out into the world  I actually liked the preuel than the first book in the Lock In seriesWhat Head On has over Lock In is a better detective story to accompany all the very cool stuff happening in the SciFi world  This book will be a little different For instance we have zero idea if the Main Character Chris is a boy or a girl even the audiobooks have two different narrator options one male and one female  Since everyone interacts with Chris either in virtual space or a robot system you really don’t get normal gender clues I really like that Chris is essentially genderless by today’s standardsChris and hisher partner Vann are FBI agents normally tasked with crimes involving Hadens members of society who are locked in their bodies and interact with the world virtually or with a robot they pilot   When there is death of a Haden player at a Hilketa match Chris and Vann are the natural team to call in for the investigation How does the beheading of a piloted robot lead to the death of the pilot who is states away? “That threep’s the goat That’s the player the other team wants to rip the head off of They try to take his head while his team tries to keep him from having his head ripped off”“And when the head is taken they try to punt it through the goalposts”“Punt it toss it or carry it through yes”“And everyone has swords and hammers and bats—”“They have those because that shit’s just fun” The mystery plot for Head On worked for me a lot better and seemed planned and polished  Chris and Vann have a fun banter between them that makes the dialogue fun and easy to read I also like that both Chris and Vann are not flat characters but have a good dimensionality to them making them human   But the real winner for me at least in this series is the world I really get caught up in what it would be like to live in a world that has C 3POesk robot walking down the street being piloted by a person who can’t move and could be anywhere I did not destroy another threep” I said “A car did”You got hit by a car”“Twice”“So once for the experience and twice to be sure?” Tony asked “Hey weren’t you hit by a car when you were a kid?”“It was a truck”“Same concept Three times is a fetish Chris” Tony said “Which is your business But it gets pretty pricey You might want to take up a less expensive hobby like cocaine” So if you are a fan of cool fleshed out SciFi worlds and also like murder mysteries then the Lock In series could really be something to put on your TBR list  Wil Wheaton is the male narrator and I thought he did a fantastic job on Lock In if you are a fan of audio I received this book for free from NetGalley for an honest review This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review


  5. says:

    This is a super easy read that hits all the fun spots for all you folks who're into Sports Mysteries and great concept SF filled with robots designed for tele reality and virtual realityI'm one of those readers who are very partial to the SF stuff and I like a good mystery too so I had a great time on that alone But here's the funny part the sports aspect is uniue as hell and full of some great twists Such as getting your head pulled off during the play to be used as a football As part of the game Those people from the previous book the folks who're stuck in their bodies and can only get out by using a waldo robot or by those biological peeps who are wired for it are now pretty much the only game in town when it comes to full contact sports It's all robots of course and transferred consciousnesses and a wild story that's the eual of any modern mystery in that OTHER genre In a lot of ways I think this seuel featuring our favorite FBI Lock In is superior to the first I'm totally glad to have read it It's just plain good and fun


  6. says:

    Shakes Fist at John ScalziDamn you Scalzi We still don't know if Chris is a male or female You just like mind fucking us don't you?Come onNow who's messing with us? VEGAN cookies? Eww no thanks I'll have crab juice insteadChris is out narrator and heshe is in the FBI and look I'm just going to assign Chris a gender right now because I'm not writing out heshe for every stupid thing I say Chris is a girl I've declared it because1 I want Chris to be a girl because she's so freaking cool and snarky2 Chris mentions a book that was one of her favorites as a child by author Catherynne Valente and I looked her up The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Makingis a series Seems like something girls would love3 In the first book when her partner saw Chris's actual body she said that she was surprised I think she had been assuming Chris was a male4 Did I mention that Chris is too cool to be a boy? She's one of usSo problem solved You might as well write it in now Scalzi No I'm serious Get on this You're riding my last nerve hereChris's partner Leslie is also very cool In good cop bad cop she's always bad cop She just does it so wellThe crime they are trying to solve has to do with a death during a game that is basically robot wars Robots trying to rip off each other's heads to use as a ball Strangely this doesn't even seem silly or crazy any We all know that if we get robot bodies this will become a sport Really how many years away can this be? Scalzi is a geniushey waitit's been done Screw you ScalziThere is tons of humor and fun while they try and solve the crime Plus as an added bonus people and robots die This series is a must for sci fi fans You will like it almost as much as you like goateed Mr Spock


  7. says:

    At some point in the future – when early 21st century media culture is assessed in all its heedless glory – a full audit of the bloggernovelist phenomenon will come to pass and John Scalzi will likely be held as one of its most successful and admired specimens By bloggernovelist I don’t mean “novelist who blogs” or blogger who turns their blog into a book but of a specific mutant hybrid of both mediums Scalzi has transposed all the elements of a thriving blog into his fiction writing career a prolific output that needs to be both urgent and memorable that feels like a product of the present day culture’s collective consciousness as much as a piece of his own brain spilling out onto page and screen A uniue biochemical cocktail is reuired for a brain like this to suirm its way into the marketplace of ideas a kind of ego driven charisma that relies far on generosity than selfishness but also acknowledges that a healthy dallop of self centeredness is an essential part of the formula There’s a moment in his new novel the near future crime thriller Head On when FBI agent Chris Shane takes a “classic” Catherynne Valente novel from a suspect’s bookshelf during an interrogation and both interviewer and interviewee awkwardly profess their love for it before moving on to the business at hand Shout outs to friends and colleagues are a staple of Scalzi the blogger and Scalzi the novelist a show of warm hearted regard that accedes not only to an author’s place in the production of a text but to this author’s in particular It’s not just a shout out to Valente as a fellow traveler but to Scalzi’s own devoted fan base who know that moments like these express why he loves doing what he doesHead On is the standalone seuel to Lock In Scalzi’s popular and well regarded technothriller from 2014 Lock In set up a near future scenario where a small but significant percentage of the population is afflicted with Haden’s syndrome which leaves its victims with fully active brains literally locked inside their completely inert bodies Public accommodations for this new class of persons with disabilities ensue resulting in alongside other technological advances robotic vehicles called “threeps” that a Haden can operate remotely using a neural net attached to their brains Threeps allow Hadens to live relatively normal professional and social lives while their bodies remain stationary Lock In introduced us to Haden FBI agent Chris Shane and his partner non Haden Leslie Vann as they investigated a murder committed using Haden based technology In Head On Scalzi explores the way Hadens culture leaves its mark on mass entertainment – in this case a professional sports league called Hilketa where Hadens pilot their threeps in a game where scoring depends on forcibly removing the robot head of an opposing player At the opening of Head On a player’s real body dies as its threep’s head is removed and suspicious activity by the league’s front office points to a coverup Shane and Vann once again become enmeshed in a high profile case with huge stakes big money interests and intense media scrutinyI’ve always felt that Scalzi writes fiction with a journalist’s flair for delivering information in accessible controlled bursts The overture to Head On comes in the form of a magazine or probably webzine article a very convincing bit of faux sports reporting for Scalzi’s imaginary Hilketa league that effortlessly manages to pulls off the holy grail of genre writing the invisible info dump – a way of setting the table for the estranged reader in a way that would feel organic to a familiar one It’s an effective tone setter that plays on Scalzi’s strengths as a writer – his ability to write science fiction that appeals to SF fans without alienating non SF readers Scalzi can sometimes be overly meticulous in designing his plots so part of the fun of Head On comes when you realize that his protagonist shares his creator’s passion for methodical professionalism but his enemy is likely akin to a belligerent fool who let one bad idea spiral dangerously out of control A snapshot of the present moment in America if there ever was oneIn many ways Head On and its predecessor feel closer to the Scalzi of internet lore than his space operas do POV narrator Shane disseminates his tale in the same easygoing smart and snarky manner that Scalzi the blogger is known for and while one could say the same of his other protagonists only Shane gets to do so in a milieu that roughly approximates present day America Because as much as Scalzi likes to make up cool stuff about things that might happen someday he also likes to say witty things about stuff that’s going on right now and in Head On he gets to do both in the kind of uick digestible bites that fire up the neurons without weighing the reader down In other words Head On is about issues that matter to readers’ lives today told with characters who pilot anthropomorphic robot suits Add to this the fact that he is doing so in the form of the invincibly popular crime thriller and that the deciding agent of the story is a cat named Donut and you know you are dealing with an author who sucks up to his readers in all the right waysAs much as I find Scalzi’s writing consistently entertaining I’m actually surprised at how much I liked Head On Lock In has the distinction of being my least favorite of Scalzi’s novels; I can say with confidence however that Head On won me over without diverging much from the formula its predecessor established Fans and skeptics alike should be satisfied by the time they reach the final pageMany thanks to Netgalley and the folks at Tor Books for the opportunity to read this ARC


  8. says:

    Review for Lock InScalzi continues the great momentum he built up in Lock In with this excellent seuel Once again the daring duo of Chris of the indeterminate gender and Van find themselves involved in a complex investigation that intersects with the Haden community In this case Hilketa a sport that combines football with gladiatorial combat and robot bodies Of course all is not as it appears billions of dollars in investments are at risk and death is always just around the cornerAs far as the mystery goes Scalzi once again delivers a twisty turny case that meshes very well with the wider plot and makes good use of the world he has conjured up I don't want to get too deep into it sufficed to say I had no idea what the conspiracy was until the very end and I was engaged in the story the whole time All the characters are great and jive well together I continue to love the Van Chris partnership I am happy to see there is not a whiff of sexual tension there they are both dedicated investigators who work well together and respect each other For my money they are the best investigative duo in the SFF spaceBut what I would rather talk about is how Scalzi uses the fictional medical condition in this series to explore broader social ideas I have always maintained that good science fiction is a reflection on contemporary society either how it is or how it could be In the case of this series Scalzi examines just what it means to be an outsider of society People suffering from Haden's Syndrome are physically separated from the rest of humanity forced to interact through an online space or through robots threeps They are very much separate from the rest of humanity and rightly view themselves as a distinct minority group even if their numbers span the spectrum of humanityThat is what makes Hilketa so interesting It is a respected space where Haden's actually have an advantage over the rest of humanity Because they have spend so much of their lives interacting through Threeps they are much much better suited to navigating them in a competitive environment even if in theory the league is open to everyone It is a mark of pride for the community so when one of the players dies on the field it is a big dealOn top of that the previous book saw the repeal of many support programs and funding for Hadens We see early impact of this repeal in Head On Hadens will find it difficult to afford threeps and be forced and to the fringes of society Even with Hilketa and prominent Hadens like Chris they rightly fear they will become another marginalized group Compounded with the seemingly inevitable trend that would allow normal humans to also operate threeps and the Haden community in this book feels very much under siege And I found that interesting Scalzi didn't just make the disease and its effects as a convenient means of forcing Chris to drive a threep and thereby distinguishing himher from other similar characters Scalzi extrapolated just how such a community would behave and how society to adjust to their existence That exploration feeds into the stories and gives the world a very deep feel Slap on some of that trademarked Scalzi snark and you get a really fun engaging and surprisingly insightful sci fi mysteryIf you wanted to know about Hilketa the fictional game from this book here you go courtesy of Tor


  9. says:

    A Solid 4 Star ReadIn a world where 1% of the population interacts with the rest of the world in something akin to C 3PO this was a game that was bound to be invented The reason Hilketa is so popular is that the players score points through simulated decapitation and go after each other with melee weapons It’s team gladiatorial combat on a football field with a nerdy scoring system It’s all the violence every other team sport wishes it could have but can’t because people would actually die I'd totally watch this sport if I lived in this worldFull review to come


  10. says:

    45 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum ’m a huge fan of John Scalzi having read almost all his novels and when Lock In came out a few years ago it uickly became one of my favorite books by the author It was therefore with great excitement that I picked up Head On which is described as its standalone seuel And indeed you may choose to read this without having read the first book but personally I feel you will be missing out on the subtler nuances of the series if you skipped right to this one The world of Lock In and Head On is a very complex place and as I will explain later in my review reading both books will give you a fuller view of the pictureOnce readers follow Chris Shane the series’ rookie FBI agent protagonist Chris is also a Haden the name given to those individuals whose minds are “locked in” as the result of a devastating flu that swept across the globe several decades ago This disease killed many in the first stage of the infection but a percentage went on to survive only to suffer acute meningitis which affected the victim’s brain and caused them to become trapped in a state of being fully awake and aware but having no control over their voluntary nervous systems A cure for this condition dubbed Haden’s Syndrome after the then president’s wife who was the most famous person to be affected at the time was given the highest priority though none was ever found Instead scientists created humanoid personal transports called “Threeps” into which locked in individuals were able to link their minds remotely allowing them to interact with their world even as their physical bodies remained immobileBy the time this series takes place personal transport technology has become much developed and advanced It has even permeated into the world of professional sports in which Hadens pilot specialized Threeps in a fast and furious game known as Hilketa Though the sport itself is extremely violent involving the lopping off of heads with swords and war hammers no one technically gets hurt because the only “bodies” getting battered and broken on the field are the robot like Threeps However during a high profile special exhibition game an up and coming player named Duane Chapman suddenly dies in the middle of a match meant to attract new investors to the North American Hilketa League his vitals disappearing off the boards for all to see NAHL officials are uick to cover up the incident leading Chris who was present in the skybox during the fatal match to suspect there’s to Chapman’s death than meets the eyeLike its predecessor Head On reads like a sci fi mystery thriller following FBI agents Chris Shane and Leslie Vann as they sniff out clues and hunt down the perpetrators in Haden related crimes But unlike the previous installment it dispenses with much of the social commentary and focus on topical themes putting the emphasis on investigative procedures the actual crime solving Happily the culprit also wasn’t as obvious this time compared to Lock In As a result I felt that this seuel was exciting in terms of pacing and levels of suspense especially since the trail to find Duane Chapman’s murderer subseuently leads Chris to all kinds of strange personalities and bizarre happenings related to the dark underbelly of the Hilketa industry Uncovering everything from backroom deals to sordid affairs our protagonist winds up being caught up in series of harrowing events that include arson assassination and a whole pile of destroyed Threeps Needless to say this novel ended up being a very uick read since all that intensity and action made it hard to put downThat said the book also lost much of its cerebral and philosophical bite due to the diminished exploration into social themes like disability ethics in medicine and other discussion worthy subjects related to a world in which a significant percentage of the population suffer from an expensive and life altering condition While Head On lightly touches upon some of these issues such as government funding for individuals with Haden Syndrome or the social perceptions of them in public in this particular arena Lock In still holds the edge This isn’t really a dig at Head On however; after all you can only expound upon these themes beyond the first book to a certain extent before it starts becoming repetitive As such this is why I think it would be a good idea to read the two books in order; you’ll get the insightful commentary in the first one and the action and suspense in the second—the best of both worldsHead On though is still in every sense a Scalzi novel It has his signature style all over it in the clever premise the slick sense of humor the uippy lines of dialogue It’s also interesting to note while the author is careful not to reveal the gender of the series protagonist in my mind I still picture Chris Shane as male because Scalzi can’t ever seem to write a convincing enough female POV see examples Zoe’s Tale or The Sagan Diary However that’s just my personal opinion and ultimately a non issue since it didn’t distract or take away from my overall enjoyment of this particular novel whose pages I devoured while loving every moment of the storyIn the end I think I enjoyed this book just as much as Lock In even though its tone may have shifted slightly to a traditional mystery thriller narrative—which can be a good thing depending on the type of reader you are For me Scalzi’s stories are always a delight because of how clever witty and approachable they are and this one was no exception I had a smashing good time with Head On and whether you are new to the author or a long time fan I think you will too


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