Roses & Thorns

Roses & Thorns

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Nirvana by J. R. Stewart


When the real world is emptied of all that you love, how can you keep yourself from dependence on the virtual?

Animal activist and punk rock star Larissa Kenders lives in a dystopian world where the real and the virtual intermingle. After the disappearance of her soulmate, Andrew, Kenders finds solace by escaping to Nirvana, a virtual world controlled by Hexagon. In Nirvana, anyone’s deepest desires may be realized - even visits with Andrew.

Although Kenders knows that this version of Andrew is virtual, when he asks for her assistance revealing Hexagon’s dark secret, she cannot help but comply. Soon after, Kenders and her closest allies find themselves in a battle with Hexagon, the very institution they have been taught to trust. After uncovering much more than she expected, Kenders’ biggest challenge is determining what is real—and what is virtual.

Nirvana is a fast-paced, page-turning young adult novel combining elements of science fiction, mystery, and romance. Part of a trilogy, this book introduces readers to a young woman who refuses to give up on the man she loves, even if it means taking on an entire government to do so.

About the Author:

J.R. Stewart has worked on many corporate projects throughout a prolific IT academic and consulting career, and is involved with many confidential virtual reality projects. After working on advanced “VR” technologies for over a decade, Stewart grew concerned about the implications of this work and the possible psychological effects that it may have on its users.

[Ed. Note.: J.R. Stewart prefers to remain anonymous and does not publish author photos.]

Review by Rochelle:

Nirvana was a gripping book. Larissa Kenders has major trust issues due to childhood trauma, but when she meets Andrew, he shows her that not all men are the monster her father was. Their relationship on campus is almost idyllic. Then Andrew is offered a job at “The Barracks.” They get married so Kenders can go with him, which is fortunate. When the bees become extinct completely disrupting the food chain and the Earth turns into a dustbowl, most people who survive the famine are crowded into concentration camps where they work corporate farms. The only people not subjected to this labor are the soldiers in the Barracks and a few ultra-wealthy or select minds who live in the luxurious “Bubble.” When Andrew goes missing on a mission, Kenders cannot move on. She spends him in the virtual world, Nirvana, and eventually begins to question whether the man she encounters there is virtual, or if he’s really her Andrew.

I might have given this book five roses, but I absolutely hate cliff-hanger endings, and Nirvana ends on a cliff-hanger. I suppose it goes back to Tolkien, but he wrote The Lord of the Rings as one book and his publisher split it up. If you don’t mind cliff-hangers, then Nirvana is a good book.

Heat Rating:  G
Length:  201 Pages
Digital Price:  $5.99

Thanks for visiting. Donna, Julie, & Rochelle

1 comment:

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