I spoke at a children’s book event the other year, and this book – Mind Games – was one of the pre-press books that I picked up .. I love teenage books – good moral message, typically fairly fast paced, and always lots to think about.
With echoes of books such as Divergent, this book takes us into a future (post World War 3), in which the world is largely controlled by a large virtual-reality corporation (oh yes, we’ve been having these conversations at many conferences – e.g. does the government or Facebook control more of our lives?). Our main character, Luna (named after a Harry Potter character) is hiding that she is able to always be in the ‘real’ world, when plugged into ‘Realtime’, which pretty much everyone else (aside from a few religious protestors) is plugged into. Lots of secrets to uncover, and lots of questioning as to what is ‘real’, and how much people want to experience ‘reality’, or whether they want to move beyonds the bounds of the physical .. you can see why I enjoyed this one!
An interesting quote re the idolisation of rationality over intelligence:
Dr Bex Lewis is passionate about helping people engage with the digital world in a positive way, where she has more than 20 years’ experience. She is Senior Lecturer in Digital Marketing at Manchester Metropolitan University and Visiting Research Fellow at St John’s College, Durham University, with a particular interest in digital culture, persuasion and attitudinal change, especially how this affects the third sector, including faith organisations, and, after her breast cancer diagnosis in 2017, has started to research social media and cancer. Trained as a mass communications historian, she has written the original history of the poster Keep Calm and Carry On: The Truth Behind the Poster (Imperial War Museum, 2017), drawing upon her PhD research. She is Director of social media consultancy Digital Fingerprint, and author of Raising Children in a Digital Age: Enjoying the Best, Avoiding the Worst (Lion Hudson, 2014) as well as a number of book chapters, and regularly judges digital awards. She has a strong media presence, with her expertise featured in a wide range of publications and programmes, including national, international and specialist TV, radio and press, and can be found all over social media, typically as @drbexl.