From the New York Times bestselling author of Little Brother, a major novel of the booms, busts, and further booms in store for America
Perry and Lester invent things—seashell robots that make toast, Boogie Woogie Elmo dolls that drive cars. They also invent entirely new economic systems, like the “New Work,” a New Deal for the technological era. Barefoot bankers cross the nation, microinvesting in high-tech communal mini-startups like Perry and Lester’s. Together, they transform the country, and Andrea Fleeks, a journo-turned-blogger, is there to document it.
Then it slides into collapse. The New Work bust puts the dot.combomb to shame. Perry and Lester build a network of interactive rides in abandoned Wal-Marts across the land. As their rides, which commemorate the New Work’s glory days, gain in popularity, a rogue Disney executive grows jealous, and convinces the police that Perry and Lester’s 3D printers are being used to run off AK-47s.
Hordes of goths descend on the shantytown built by the New Workers, joining the cult. Lawsuits multiply as venture capitalists take on a new investment strategy: backing litigation against companies like Disney. Lester and Perry’s friendship falls to pieces when Lester gets the ‘fatkins’ treatment, turning him into a sybaritic gigolo.
Then things get really interesting.
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Makers took me places I’d never been and would not have thought of visiting, and I had a wonderful time there. It introduced me to some really interesting strangers and involved me in their remarkable lives. It painted a persuasive picture of a better tomorrow I’ve been having more and more trouble imagining lately. And it was a lot of fun. It gives me renewed hope for the future, of both written science fiction and the world.
Spider Robinson The Globe and Mail