Pirate Cinema by Cory Doctorow(3 out of 5)

I haven’t read Cory Doctorow until now. My co-worker Dan tells me that I should read him more often. I wasn’t real blown away by Pirate Cinema, I have to say. It did redeem itself toward the end, but it took 263 pages into it until I finally got interested. Usually those books don’t end up getting 3 stars from me, but this did redeem itself and so, here’s the 3 star rating for the last half of the book. I guess my wish is that the book hooked me from the first page, and that it didn’t take almost half of the book to click with me. I did end up enjoying it overall.

Trent McCauley is a teen boy obsessed with making movies on his computer. The only problem is that he uses footage from previously filmed flicks, which is illegal in future Britain(where this book takes place). The government is in everything, including your computer records. You get busted three times, and the third time will result in your Internet access being cut off. To me, that sounds like a dream come true- but in this story, Trent’s family and their livelihood is completely dependent upon the Internet access(his mom applies for benefits(the same as welfare in this day and age, I believe), his father’s job is entirely Internet dependent, and his younger sister’s school studies are based online), and when Trent ignores the first two warnings, gets cocky, and has the Internet terminated when he’s busted for the third time, his family falls into dire straits and hysterics. What does Trent do? What a typically restless 16 year old would do- he gets on a train and leaves his family, shamed by his actions, and determined to learn to live on the streets until he can make right with his actions. Trent falls in with a group of artists, tortured souls, and miscreant souls who are determined to fight the rules and win against “the man’s” new tougher Internet piracy laws, which will imprison most of Britain, from the sound of it. Throughout most of the book, things look bleak, as most of the government in Britain have many people of power in place and the resources to make this way a way of life. Will Trent and his newfound group get those rules overturned? Will he head home to his family victorious? Will he hope for the best for his family and continue his life on the streets with his friends? And more importantly than that, will he make that movie he wants to make?

~ by generationgbooks on August 19, 2012.

2 Responses to “Pirate Cinema by Cory Doctorow(3 out of 5)”

  1. I’m a huge Doctorow fan, so of course I had to read Pirate Cinema. and you know what? it’s not his best work, not by far. there were a lot of loose ends that never got explained, and I felt the message got far more airtime (page time?) than the plot and characters. If you choose to give Doctorow another chance, try Makers, or his short story collection Overclocked.

    • Thank you for your input! I did enjoy the writing style, I just felt like something was missing there, but I didn’t feel compelled to comment more, because this is the first work I’ve read. I will order Makers, give it a shot, and let you know what I think. I appreciate the suggestions. I’m starting to get more into short stories, so that may be on the TBR list also.

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