Cover Image: Borderless

Borderless

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Borderless picks up where Bandwidth leaves off as groups are more aware of the true power that the feed can possess on the global civilization. 
This story is from Diana's viewpoint, who is a working as a freelance spy now that she has left the CIA. A subtle underlying story of the book is how Diana is trying to figure out how to avoid second-guessing herself, putting trust in others, all while battling mentors and others from her past. While she is dealing with her own internal struggles, she needs to stay sharp in order to put a stop to others taking over one of the worlds most important resources.
One of the things I appreciate about Eliot's books is the realistic characters, their struggles, and overall attention to detail. It makes them easily relatable, even in a futuristic world.
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Borderless is a wonderful continuation of the Analog series, giving us a new protagonist and a new conspiracy with global implications that threatens to undermine human civilization as they know it. The villains are more villainous, the secrets are more damning, and the stakes are as high as can be. This is a spy novel at its finest, wrapped up in the workings of a tech-dependent society whose simplification of service providers has created untold ramifications. The story is fresh and compelling, proving Borderless as a fitting sequel.

There are some spoilers below, so stop if you want everything to be a complete surprise!

The new protagonist, Diana, makes a few cameos in Bandwidth, adding the spy intrigue that’s peppered throughout that story. In this new addition to the series, Diana is front and center, using her skills to first create, then undermine, a plot for world domination. It’s fascinating to see how her mind works as she flies through solutions to the constant stream of dilemmas. Her relationship with Dag is also on display, showing us the complexities of two people who deal in secrets attempting to create a strong bond. Diana is a deeply drawn character in every sense. We see her complicated background as a spy, stemming from her immigration as a refugee and the many traumas associated with uprooting your entire life. We get insights into her many missions and the enormous secret that has been hanging over her head for years. All of it coalesces into a great protagonist who is essential to the story being told.  

Borderless takes the issues to a more global level than the first novel, creating a world domination plot that rivals that of a Bond villain. Wrapped in with the always thrilling plot is a conversation on the dangers of centralizing every societal need with one company. Transportation is run by their software, all forms of communication go through them, any kind of service involving the power of artificial intelligence is wrapped up in the feed. It creates a behemoth that can’t be reckoned with and that can be used against the people it helps. The implications are terrifying if you look to our current society and the ever decreasing number of companies in various industries. The plot becomes more and more realistic as you think about modern day society. 

On a final note, I’m consistently impressed with the shocking solutions Peper’s characters devise to the central conflicts. The issues from both books seemed impossible to solve and yet Peper was able to put forward a solution that I, as a reader, didn’t think could be possible. On top of these bold choices, Peper spends the time needed to explain how the solutions could work and what it would take to get the job done. It’s incredibly smart, well-informed storytelling that shows a deep knowledge of politics, public policy, and psychology. 

Overall, I loved Borderless. With well-crafted characters, an intricately woven plot, and a technology-driven society that mirrors our own, it’s impossible to put down.
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This was OK, but not as good as I has expected. The author is talented. I didn't stay engaged throughout. Reminded me a little of a high tech Bond novel at times with a lesser "cool" factor.

I really appreciate the copy for review!!
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Really enjoyed the clear writing of this one, characters are engaging in this off world fantasy .. recommend it for entertaining reading
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In a future when information is power, the Feed dominates everyone's thinking. Imagine a world when the only way to get away from the influence of the Feed is to attend a club called Analog.  Diana has been called on to engage in some corporate espionage by her mentor Helen, but as she digs deeper she realizes that she is a pawn in a plot to turn all the power of the Feed to one person.  Since trust has always been difficult for her, she has nowhere to turn for help, even including her lover Dag.  But she must stop the plot and use her wiles to outwit  the very brilliant people who trained and hired her.  The concepts in this novel are all too relevant today, and the suspense of this futuristic spy thriller make for exciting reading.
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This book tells an interesting story and really pulls you in later on.  The story is written very well without any major issues.  The main plot is very intriguing.  My only issues come from the writer pushing their political views on the reader.  While it could be viewed as creating talking points, it is obvious the writer believes there is no opportunity that what he believes to be fact could be wrong.  The other issue is that toward the end of the book, the main character completely switches personality and I would have wanted a little more description into the internal battle that resulted in that.  It seemed to occur just a little to easily.  Other than those 2 issues, it was a very well written book and the plot/story moved along fantastically.
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Borderless by Eliot Peper was really interesting! A very compelling novel with intriguing three dimensional characters.
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I enjoyed this book more than the first. Diana/Maria is a protagonist who earns your respect and admiration chapter by chapter.
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Eliot Peper is an amazing new talent and this series is no exception to that rule.  Interesting, fast paced and fantastic finish, you must read this today!
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A great follow on from Bandwidth, using the more interesting future story of the spy figure. Complex conspiracy with all peril abounding, this is a fact-paced read.
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This is book 2 but if you read book 1 you know it pretty much wrapped up it's story. However, some groundwork was laid so that we could revisit this incredible near-future world with follow up characters.

We follow CIA agent Diana as she's embroiled in intrigue and action in her quest to keep "the feed" safe from malicious hands. Great mystery set in a relevant near-future world.
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Eliot Peper continues to improve, and I'm now anxious to read anything else he writes. Fast-paced action, great character development, with insight into current political quandaries even though this is set decades into the future. I reviewed Bandwidth earlier this year, but decided to combine titles of his Analog series onto one page.
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When we last left the Analog series at the end of its initial entry, Bandwidth, that story was pretty well wrapped up, with the groundwork laid for a follow-up. I expected to drop back into Dag's life and follow him as he handled the ensuing situation. But Eliot Peper had a better idea. Yes, let's follow that lead, but let's look at it from a different angle. So instead of Dag, we're in the head of Diana, the former CIA agent Dag used to get intel and, as we left off Bandwidth, a promising romantic interest.

We may be in a near-future world where ecological disaster has caused tectonic shifts in society, economics, politics, and culture, and the entire world, beyond the borders of its nation states, relies on The Feed -- the internet structured as an amalgam of social media feeds, implanted into people's heads and into the electronics of, well, everything. But Peper never forgets that all else aside, what makes for good storytelling is character. And so Diana, who was an interesting supporting player in Bandwidth, becomes the firebrand protagonist of Borderless.

How does this play out? Imagine if you will a plot twist that requires Diana to get from San Francisco to DC despite a nationwide (worldwide) blackout, where all electronic technology has ceased to function, which because of The Feed means, as we've seen, pretty much everything. All Diana really needs to do to move the plot along is get into an airplane that predates all this technology, say a WWII-era fighter. So in the hands of your average action novelist, this would be one line or one paragraph -- Diana rode her bike to the marina, took a sailboat across the Bay, swam to shore, ran across the airport, and got into the Lockheed Whatever that was waiting for her. Simple enough, 'nuff said.

But Peper takes that one line and makes a whole chapter out of it. Nell, who provides all this for Diana, and who has been a peripheral presence to this point, gets to not only shepherd Diana to the plane, but to reveal her own character (perhaps in anticipation of becoming a major figure in a future entry, since she runs the establishment the series is named for, the bar/club called Analog). We also learn more about Diana in this chapter, even though this is already late in the book. Peper even has the wherewithal to add a couple of objective correlatives to help deepen the literary side of his action story, notably one about a peregrine falcon hunting a pigeon (he makes liberal use, and effective use, of objective correlatives throughout).

Folks, this is the stuff of good writing. And good writing elevates anything, even a good dystopian post-apocalyptic techno-action thriller like this.

Add to that some timely topics -- the ongoing debates about the role of social media in shaping our last election, the issue of net neutrality, and the globalization of society, culture, and commerce, with the concept of nationalism and borders inexorably heading toward anachronism (and currently the hotly contested subject of pushback) -- and you've got yourself one dandy series happening here. Looking forward to more, although the difference this time is that, with the story is brought to conclusion, there is no obvious loose thread leading to the next entry (well, there are a couple of possibilities, but nothing as direct as where we left off in Bandwidth).

Thanks to NetGalley for providing an advance copy of this book for review.
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Borderless is a spy novel with scifi elements. It was okay, but didn't grab me. The main character and her internal dilemmas were not especially compelling. She was annoyingly competent and the growing paranoia just puttered along.  The world (that future?) didn't grab me either. I was just as happy to put the book down as to pick it up.
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First off – I wouldn’t have guessed that the Author isn’t female. The main character is written realistically, palpable and very rounded.

I wanted to read the book for some good near future sci-fi and an adventure. I got so much more out of it. Borderless essentially shows you the story of an immigrated citizen with a complicated past, that has to question her way of loving and protecting her new home – be it her own little sanctuary or the United States of America. You follow Diana through her journey and meet every side-character through her eyes. The writing is beautiful and it  brings the different relationships to live.

    Knowing that you were being manipulated didn’t stop it from working.

Besides Dag, I got a good sense of the people in her life and I’m looking forward to meeting him in Bandwith.

    […] sketches capturing the multiyear fire  […] his enthusiasm was aedent, fueled by the guilt.

Eliot Peper seems to write very descriptively but less with adjectives and more through actions, which I liked a lot. The appearances of people seem secondary unless something is described in context of an action or a feeling it evokes. It’s an interesting story that feels like you’re slowly unearthing various layers of the story, the people and the ploys. While it is Sci-Fi everything feels realistic and I enjoyed seeing a catheter using agent who’s human and doesn’t go rogue with kung-fu skills.

    Just like that Diana’s plan evaporated. She wanted to come back with a firm rebuttal, explain how she’d thought through every contingency. But the fact was, she hadn’t.

I joined her in a journey, starting out with eager nervousness, through all the turmoils of present and past and in the end was moved by few unremarkable words in a melancholic world, full of shit and beauty. Because life isn’t a fairy tale, but it writes the best stories. And the stories of this characters are rooted in real human emotions in all their complexity. Please get yourself some tissues for the epilogue.
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I recommend anyone who is a fan of science fiction to check out this series. It was a interesting read.
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An interesting tale on a future where everyone is directly wired to "the feed" similar to what Gibson and Dick have imagined, only with a more down-to-earth collection of characters and a very interesting and strong female protagonist. The action takes place all over the world as the operator of the feed has enormous power and political clout. Well worth the read.
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