Dystopian, Edelweiss, Fiction, Scifi, Society

[Dystopia Review] Being Plugged In VS Back To Basic Society The Feed by Nick Clark Windo

The Feed is a solid, well-written, but pretty traditional dystopian novel. Definitely recommended for dystopia fans! I expected something more ground-breaking from it, and maybe more powerful or adventure driven, but it’s more of a slice-of-life. However, I enjoyed this book, and I’ll try to give you my reasons why.

The Feed is sort of like our social media, except it’s ubiquitous. You can choose to be ‘unplugged’, but almost nobody does. The ones that do are considered outliers and activists, and that’s precisely what the main characters Tom and Kate are. Tom stands at the beginnings of The Feed – as the son of the man who started the project, he was the first child to be ‘enabled’ – without being asked, of course. The Feed isn’t that bad, except for the fact that it stops people from paying attention to the outside of their life, to the point where reading is not a needed ability anymore and isn’t even learned. When one day The Feed is hacked, chaos ensues. Suddenly, your mind could be invaded by anyone at all. The world winds down quite quickly, and everyone has to learn to live a simpler life. Not that that helps them find out who’s been invading their brains though…

The Pace

While I enjoyed The Feed, my biggest problem was with the pace. Things didn’t really take off up till maybe 70% into the book, and I still wasn’t sure what I’m reading here – I mean, atmospheric tales are okay, I guess it’s more about the fact that I don’t read a lot of dystopias – so if I’m reading one, I’m expecting something to happen. It did, eventually, but in my opinion, it took too long.

The Plot

Once the plot got moving, I appreciated its originality and the idea it is based on. It really is a good plot! Unline many other dystopian novels, this one is not based on constant violence and terror. Yes, there is violence, but the book really isn’t about that. In between short spurts of ‘happenings’, it’s more of a study of the characters’ inner realms, their feelings and wonderings. The main plot revolves about trying to find out what is happening to the people whose brains get ‘hacked’. Although this plot line isn’t so apparent till later in the book. I can’t give away too much, obviously for fear of spoilers, but I believe the story was uncovered in a nice way, and the whole setup was also smart and interesting. I was also deeply satisfied with the ending.

The Characters

I really enjoyed the characters! They are written truly well, and you can tell them apart well – even when they inhabit the same body . The drama they are living through – lost children, not knowing what happened to your remote family, not having enough to eat or even knowledge to grow or forage for food – it’s all very realistic and well done. I enjoyed the slice-of-life part of The Feed.

The Triggers

Should I have to warn you about triggers in a dystopian novel..? Anything dystopian is bound to have scores of triggers. Although I find that this book is much less graphic than the rest, there is still violence, although most of it is perceived rather than described. Yes, you might get sad reading this book – it’s our possible future. And it’s a sad one. I believe that is meant to get us to think about what we’re doing to the world.

Overall...

The Feed is a good book for the lover of slower, psychological dystopia – one that is not based on supernatural happenings or constant movement and adventure. It’s a study of a person’s feelings when something like this happens, and it’s also a study of the direction our world might be taking. Despite being somewhat slow paced, it has a very satisfying ending and poses a lot of good questions to ponder about.

Other Books You Might Like

I feel like this book is a lot like Station Eleven, which was also a sort of intellectualist-dystopia, although possibly more high-brow than The Feed. The pace and feel is quite similar though, so if you enjoyed it, I think you will enjoy The Feed as well. Children of the Different is also a similar story, but in a different way than Station Eleven. It focuses more on movement, pace and adventure, but somehow, the feel is quite similar.

Station Eleven   Children of the Different

I thank William Morrow for giving me a free copy of the book in exchange to my honest opinion. You can buy the book here at Book Depository and buying using this link supports the blog.

Have you read The Feed? And do you like slow-burn dystopian Novels?

I’m Evelina and I try to blog about books that matter, with a bit of fun there too! Disability and equality will be topics you see a lot, but there’s also a lot of scifi, fantasy and… GIFs. I’m also the proud founder of #ARCsAnonymous.

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Jenn @ Bound to Writing
Guest

I like the concept of this book. It reminds me a lot of WALL-E. Maybe not the best comparison, but that’s the image that popped into my head as I read the description. Anyway, I don’t know how I feel about it being such a slow paced book. I’m still intrigued and will definitely look into this one! Great review!

lin
Guest
Oh wow this sounds like something I would enjoy and it reminds me of a recent book I read called How to enslave a human. We had similar mind hacking thing going on there and total control of humans which is scaaaary cuz it is absolutely possible, if we want to get deeper into this topic think about the TV and the internet and all the subliminal messages going on there…. yepp buut on the bright side if this means I would buy and read my books then I am OK with it XD I have been meaning to read… Read more »
lin
Guest

That ”read my books” should have been ”more books”’ LOL

Brian Joseph
Guest

Great commentary on this book. I tend to like dystopias. In some ways this sounds like it is along the lines of Brave New World where people choose frivolity over the real things in life like reading and relationships. I think that I would like this. Philosophically, though I recognize the downsides of the digital age, I think that they are far outweighed by the benefits. Thus, I do not think that humanity is headed in this direction.

Cricket
Guest

I like the idea of this book and would probably grab it for the characters but I would have a problem with the pace as well. It’s one I’ll look into when I want a slow read.

Mogsy @ BiblioSanctum
Guest

I’m going to start this one soon, so I was hoping to see a higher rating, I confess! But still looking forward to it. Wish me luck!

JJ @ This Dark Material
Guest

Lovely review as always Evelina! This sounds a little slow for my preferences, but I’m glad you found things you liked in it 🙂

veeshee
Guest

This book sounds really interesting. I loved Station Eleven, even though it had a slower pace, so I think I might consider reading this book. Great review!

Danielle
Guest

I’m about 20% in right now and I’m just not sure how I feel about it. I like the concept but as you said, it’s slow-paced. At this point I’m not sure I want to finish it. It’s a little too slow for my personal tastes. I definitely don’t feel any pull to pick it back up and it’s been 5 days since I’ve last read it.

Kristin (Book Sniffers Anonymous)
Guest

This sounds like an interesting and unique story. Thanks for the warning on the pace. 70% is a long time to wait for things to pick up. Thanks for the honest and informative review. 🙂

Cahleen Hudson
Guest

Interesting! I’m actually surprised that this hasn’t been done yet. Everyone always wonders if the day will come when social media is connected directly to our brains. I wonder if there are any similarities to The Circle? I haven’t read that one either, but I think that’s another “social media gone wrong” book.

Tizzy Brown
Guest

The synopsis sounds interesting and really up my street, it’s a shame you thought it was too slow to get into the action.

Lashaan Balasingam
Guest

Slow-pace and not so ground-breaking? I know I’d have to lower my expectations for this one then.. Great review as always, Evelina!

herding cats
Guest

A decent-ish read then. I do like mine a bit faster paced when I grab one most of the time.

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[…] Systems Red by Martha Wells. I recommend this book wholeheartedly! Then we also had a review for The Feed, a solid enough dystopian book which I liked, but couldn’t say I loved. And lastly, skipping […]

Sarabi
Guest

This book sounds something like The Circle by Dave Eggers. I had a bit of a book hangover after that one, but it has mixed reviews. I’m pretty much obsessed with dystopia + social media so I guess I need to read this too, lol.

Cee Arr
Guest

‘…to the point where reading is not a needed ability anymore and isn’t even learned.’ – Noooooooooooooo!!!!! Kill it!!!!!!! 😉

Olivia-Savannah Roach
Guest

I don’t mind a slow burn dystopian, but I am very wary of it being too slow… it needs to make up for it with a very strong world or concept, I think. It sounds like you got some mixed feelings from reading this one so I am not sure it is for me…