Saturday, January 11, 2020

Review: Catfishing on CatNet

Catfishing on CatNet Catfishing on CatNet by Naomi Kritzer
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Bought with an Amazon XMas Gift certificate from my Sister Katja and her Husband Andreas.
Also bought the Audible version (as often was rather cheap when bought with an ebook for Kindle).

Wow! Longer review in the next few days when I am not using the app on my phone at 11:30 pm in bed.

Trigger Warning: animal death, megalomaniac, dictator, abuse, bullying.

This is a nice, clean YA about diversity and growing up, no sex, and a bit much for the diversity of genders, would have liked a section at the end of the book with an overview and short explanations. Some I knew, but 1-2 pronouns where new to me. Did not look them up yet.
Could have done with a bit of sex, but that is maybe just me.

Some things are little SF, so this has a feeling of being like Max Headroom "15 minutes into the future", for those of you who still remember that show - it was on German TV when I grew up in the 80ies.
Hacking feels real, and the mentioning of safe surfing, VPN, Proxy is good, but could have been more detailed or a section in the back with explainations would be nice to have.

Just when I thought this would get only 3-4 stars (maybe 3.5 rounded up depending my mood to 4), at abuot 50% or maybe 2/3 in the book the story took a few very interesting turns. Without revealing some main points of the story I will just describe the main broad themes. You have to think about education, ethics regarding how to act and what to allow when you teach someone like your child. The Sex-Ed Robot is one of these introductions of this theme.
Also makes you think about privacy and post-privacy.
As the numbers of teenage/underage pregnancies are rather high, imho something is definitely wrong in our world with sex-education, even without Robots teaching it.

All situations, even if some are SF, are rather realistic and well thought out - in contrast to my worst unrealistic read scene in Numbers (the review - today it would be 1-2 *), where the couple on the run would have frozen to death.

As a sequel is promised at the end of the book, I will certainly pre-order this as soon as possible and read it.

Highly recommended YA with a little SF thrown in and themes to think about.

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