If you are a regular reader of my blog you will know that I love to read and share information on all types of business books. This post is not my typical book review, but for those that know me it will not come as a surprise. I am also a big science fiction geek and this book falls into that genre and is labeled as cyberpunk. Sometimes to grow and re-energize yourself as a person you need to feed your soul other things, and this is exactly what this book did for me. Pure science fiction enjoyment ~ ah.
About the Book:
All life on earth is about to be terminated by an entity as old as the galaxy itself. To make matters worse, Simon has broken everything already.
In a future world that is run by computer systems and that is without want, how can a man find his role? Then, if the very computers he works on to try to make them more human suddenly try to kill him, revealing a secret so vast that it affects every living soul on the planet, can that man be a hero?
These are the questions that face the stumbling, comic, and certainly flawed Simon Bank. His job is to work with the System’s artificial intelligence, making it fit more perfectly into human society so that it can keep the country running smoothly. But when the System threatens the peaceful world he knows, Simon suddenly must rush to save his own life, as well as the life of everyone on earth. Forced to reassess everything that he thought he knew, he is caught within circumstances way beyond his control.
Simon’s only hope is to rely on intellect and instincts he didn’t know he had, and on new friends, not all of them human, to change himself and all humanity. And he doesn’t have much time.
What’s fun about reading a book like this is that there are lessons that can be taken from it and applied to your job and life. While it is entertaining to read about saving the human race from the rise of machines, it is easy to relate to Simon (the main character) and how he struggles. There are times when we all have to re-examine what we believe to be true, and our own self-limiting beliefs in order to grow as individuals and be successful.
Self-reflection requires that you question your assumptions and your habits and ask whether they are useful in dealing with the world around you. ~ Daniel Dobrygowski
This book is a perfect example of this but presented in a futuristic and entertaining manner.
I consider myself to be a life long learner; always looking for ways to grow, improve and learn with everything I do (even when enjoying science fiction). The author of The Path, Peter Riva’s view on learning is similar to mine. This is what he told me:
Hi Chantal, what always stuns me is that people think learning at school is finite. In fact, much to my benefit, I had a teacher, Mr. Wakeford (more about him later) who taught us HOW to learn because, as he said, “Everything you think you know for certain now will change before you are forty.”
And he was right. The 1950’s dinosaurs are no longer green, slimy and lumbering. Now we know some had 3 foot feathers as decoration and with 16% more oxygen back then could move at 30 mph all day! Plastic could become fiberglass, carbon fibre, nanotubes… and eventually get down to a one molecule strand that will be virtually unbreakable.
The transistor was later found to be a mechanical reproduction of a neuron… my god-daughter was a neuro-molecular biologist at Yale/Planck and she was working on brains with 1 billion neurons in an analog matrix (not digital). I commented I didn’t know our brains had so many neurons. “Peter, I’m working on the brains of worms.” What we don’t know will always be more exciting that what we think we know.
Back to Mr. Wakeford: He got his math doctorate on “Underwater basket weaving.” We thought it was a joke. Then in 1985, at JSC in Houston, I was watching astronauts train for upcoming weightlessness in the giant water tank. I commented that it seemed like underwater basket weaving, every action had an opposite consequence in zero-g. The technician next to me asked why I said that and I mentioned Mr. Wakerord. “Yes, it was his paper that we used to make the calculation on how much force and counter force would be needed in designing tools for outer space.”
It’s a small world. One that still holds millions of mysteries. My job? To have fun exposing some of the truths and possibilities.
About the Author:
Peter Riva writes books in his spare time on two topics: Sci-Fi and Africa Adventure. He spent many months over 30 years in Africa, many of them with the legendary guides for E. African White Hunters and adventurers. He created a TV series (78 1-hour episodes) in 1995 called WildThings for Paramount TV. His writing passes on the fables, true tales and insider knowledge of these last reserves of true wildlife.Peter has also worked for more than thirty years with the leaders in aerospace and space exploration, giving him access to cutting edge science and future possibilities. His daytime job for more than forty years has been as a literary agent. He divides his time between New York and New Mexico.
If you are looking for a fun read, that challenges your own beliefs and what is in the realm of possible, I highly recommend that you check out The Path.
Win 1 of 5 sets of books (The Path Book 1 and Reaching Angelica Book 2) + 1 of 2 $25 Amazon gift cards (open internationally)