Vigilance

Robert Jackson Bennett, 1984-

Book - 2019

Robert Jackson Bennett's Vigilance is a dark science fiction action parable from an America that has permanently surrendered to gun violence. The United States. 2030. John McDean executive produces "Vigilance," a reality game show designed to make sure American citizens stay alert to foreign and domestic threats. Shooters are introduced into a "game environment," and the survivors get a cash prize. The TV audience is not the only one that's watching though, and McDe...an soon finds out what it's like to be on the other side of the camera.

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Subjects
Genres
Science fiction
Suspense fiction
Published
New York : Tor 2019.
Edition
First edition
Language
English
Physical Description
191 pages ; 21 cm
ISBN
9781250209443
1250209447
Main Author
Robert Jackson Bennett, 1984- (author)
Review by Booklist Reviews

Bennett's latest (after Foundryside?, 2018) is a broadly drawn morality tale, extrapolating from the American fascination with entertainment and guns to a future in which mass shootings are mass entertainment. John McDean is the producer of the game show Vigilance. This episode is set in a mall and is the testing ground for a new piece of software. Delyna, a dive-bar waitress, is experiencing the run-up to the hotly anticipated new episode firsthand—she is the only unarmed person in the building. The final act doesn't come as much of a surprise, and the characters are a bit too broadly drawn, but the moral of the story is a clear one that may attract readers across genres. Copyright 2019 Booklist Reviews.

Review by Library Journal Reviews

America in 2030 is ruled by guns, television networks, and most especially fear, in this frightfully realistic slice of dystopian fiction from Bennett (City of Stairs; Foundryside). The most popular TV show in the nation is Vigilance, in which gunmen, chosen and armed by the network, strike at carefully selected public spaces and must be brought down by an armed populace seeking to live out their "good guy with a gun" fantasies, all broadcast live for a spellbound audience and monster ratings. As the social media buzz for the latest episode mounts, John McDean, the show's cynical creator, exploits the dark desires that glue viewers to their screens but can't see his own vulnerabilities, exploited by others. VERDICT In a world where mass shootings are already a near-daily occurrence, this slim novel might be too grim and genuine for some, but Jackson's fast-paced, blistering look at how a nation's seductive myths about itself can lead to its downfall is an absolute must-read. Perfect for fans of Lauren Beukes, Richard K. Morgan, or the Netflix series Black Mirror.—Gregg Winsor, Johnson Cty. Lib., Overland Park, KS Copyright 2018 Library Journal.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

Robert Jackson Bennett's Vigilance is a dark science fiction action parable from an America that has permanently surrendered to gun violence.The United States. 2030. John McDean executive produces "Vigilance," a reality game show designed to make sure American citizens stay alert to foreign and domestic threats. Shooters are introduced into a "game environment," and the survivors get a cash prize.The TV audience is not the only one that's watching though, and McDean soon finds out what it's like to be on the other side of the camera.