Author: Corey J. White
Released: April 21st, 2020
I received a copy of Repo Virtual through NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Repo Virtual is the latest novel to come out of the mind of Corey J. White, and it is a piece of speculative fiction involving augmented realities, heists, and sentient software.
Julius Dax survives in a world of technology and danger by maintaining two jobs. One involves him repossessing ships online, and the other? Well, let’s just say that in the real world, he’s a bit of a thief. You do what you have to do to survive, right?
That’s where this story begins. A heist has been dropped in his lap, courtesy of his estranged sibling. Naturally, that means that things are about to go to hell, but the adventure will certainly change JD’s life forever.
“Kali wrote a piece of software that will change the world but someone stole it from her. All you’ve got to do is steal it back.”
Repo Virtual was a thrilling whirlwind of an adventure. The combination of augmented realities with real-life thievery and sentient programming was superb, and I found myself adoring every moment of this novel.
I honestly loved everything from the pacing to the characters, as well as all of the little details within. JD was a fascinating character, one who was shockingly complex, with a full backstory and multiple jobs that I personally would have loved to see more about.
To be honest, when I read the description, I thought a good chunk of the novel would be set in the augmented side of this world. While that did happen, it wasn’t nearly as much as I expected. Oddly enough, I’m okay with that. The secondary characters introduced throughout the novel added to the complexity, making the world feel richer and more alive. Each little detail rounded out the world.
I love how the distinction between the two worlds would seem to blend at time. This is not an easy thing to portray, especially not in a novel, but I think that White did a solid job of it here. In fact, I’m secretly (okay, not so secretly) hoping to see another novel in this world at some point.
I also really adored the A.I. in this novel. It would have been easy to include one and leave it like that, but that isn’t what happened. White explored the concept of a developing A.I., and everything that would include. It was introspective and thoughtful, and I really enjoyed the perspective provided here.
What shocked me was how hard this novel hit me. The conclusion in particular really impacted me, emotionally speaking. But there were other moments along the way that surprised me, both good and bad. I guess that just goes to show how attached I became while I was reading.
I’ll confess that this is actually the first novel I’ve read by Corey J. White, but you can officially consider me hooked. I’m absolutely adding him to my list of authors to keep an eye on, and if I can make some time, I’d also like to dig into his backlog. I hope that fact says enough about how much I enjoyed this novel.