Idlewild is very Matrix-esque. It starts when we meet a confused young man, who appears to be in a dark sinister place, and who seems to know as little about his world as we do. It's all very confusing (for him, and for us) but also intriguing. It seems to be a chilling place on the one hand, but as things develop we see that it's actually a place of friendship and fun......until things start to go Pete Tong.
The confused young man we meet on the first page is Halloween (how cool is THAT for a name?!!) and in his little corner of the world everything is orange and black. The colours are his 'call sign' or 'gimmick' and help distinguish him from his friends who each have their own colour combo's and quirky names.
However, his circle of friends and the world as he knows it are about to become thrown into disarray and come crashing down around him. He comes to the realisation that his survival depends on what amounts to nothing more than computer pixels. He realises that his world is actually a lot smaller than he first thought. A LOT smaller.
He's not who he thought he was, his friends and teachers are not who he thought they were and his life depends on being able to work out what's real and what's not.
Confused? So was I......but it's a great confusuion! I loved this book! I haven't read anything like it before and I'm so glad it's a three-part'er. I like the character Halloween a lot in this first installment and can't wait to see where he goes from here. This is a great book to lose yourself in. It's one of my favourite subjects in works of fiction; apocalyptic, end of the world scenario with a bit of plague and 'last man standing' thrown in for good measure.
I didn't realise when I read this that Nick Sagan was Carl Sagan's son (how could I NOT have known, with a name like that? Duh!), but I don't think it would have made much difference if I'd known in advance because I've never read any of his dad's books to compare with. He's a talented author and regardless of who his dad is, he's got a book here that holds up well against some of best SF writers around.