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Martin Perlman
Thinks Out Loud, a Blog at First
High-tech suspense meets South Seas adventure and romance when a band of young bloggers is drawn into the orbit of AltaSystemics, a mysterious high-tech company whose charismatic CEO, PrimeMover, is poised to gain control of all information, past, present and future. In seemingly unrelated events, Isaac, a burned-out blogger, washes up on the shore of a special South Seas Island that may hold the key to defeating PrimeMover. Reminiscent of the epistolary form of early English novels, the entire story is told through the blog postings of the characters.
Perlman’s somewhat promising debut mixes the blogosphere with the story of a man lost in the South Seas. Isaac, the blogger of “Thinks Out Loud,” decides to take a sabbatical and leaves his blog in the hands of frequent commenter “tallboy.” Isaac then reappears on the blog, claiming to be posting from the small South Pacific island of Tiaré via inter-island drumming and transmitting his posts back through time in Morse code. In Seattle, tallboy begins a job at AltaSystemics, a mysterious startup that claims to store data in another dimension via psychic power, and he rapidly succumbs to the odd corporate culture. tallboy’s college student brother, Eddie, begins to both carry the blog and recruit allies to save his brother and others drugged by AltaSystemics’s CEO. Important among those allies are Isaac and his newfound Tiaran acquaintances, who travel from the South Pacific to Seattle to take part in the confrontation with AltaSystemics. Perlman’s metafictional approach leaves both his in-book blog readers and actual readers guessing what is and is not real. The dialogue is sometimes stilted, and the depiction of the Tiarans borders on a caricature of Polynesians. Still, fans of stories set in the tech world, residents of the Seattle area, and readers who enjoy offbeat and original stories will be entertained. (BookLife)