Truth Machine Mass Market Paperback – June 29, 1997
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From the Publisher
I was one of the earliest readers of this manuscript, and I was very excited because, having read it, there is not a news story, trend in society, or family saga that hasn't brought this concept to mind.
I agree with the reader who commented that the book appeals more to the mind than to the heart. It is the concept that sticks with you so readily, not the characters; but, Iike all "Utopias", this book is more about a vision than about puporting to be the "great American novel".
Also, having met Jim Halperin, I was inspired by his rather courageous commitment to the idea that in order to save ourselves from becoming the victims of our own technology (primarily weaponry in the hands of the criminally insane), that as a society, even as a worldwide society, we might have to give up a little bit of the privacy that is so precious to us.
To the reader from Stamford, CT (my home town, which is why your entry stood out to me), regarding the our darker thoughts: Read a title called GUILTY BY REASON OF INSANITY. It's non-fiction, but if you liked Truth Machine, you'll like this. This goes for any of you who are interested in what makes up the mind of the criminally insane, which is, after all, the reason that the truth machine came to be in this novel/
Sheila Phelan, Director of Circulation
From the Inside Flap
It is the year 2004. Violent crime is the number one political issue in America. Now, the Swift and Sure Anti-Crime Bill guarantees a previously convicted violent criminal one fair trial, one quick appeal, then immediate execution. To prevent abuse of the law, a machine must be built that detects lies with 100 percent accuracy.
Once perfected, the Truth Machine will change the face of the world. Yet the race to finish the Truth Machine forces one man to commit a shocking act of treachery, burdening him with a dark secret that collides with everything he believes in. Now he must conceal the truth from his own creation . . . or face his execution.
By turns optimistic and chilling--and always profound--The Truth Machine is nothing less than a history of the future, a spellbinding chronicle that resonates with insight, wisdom . . . and astounding possibility.
- Item Weight : 7.2 ounces
- Mass Market Paperback : 416 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0345412885
- ISBN-13 : 978-0345412881
- Dimensions : 4.2 x 1.1 x 6.9 inches
- Publisher : Del Rey; Reprint edition (June 29, 1997)
- Language: : English
- Best Sellers Rank: #326,448 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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And the story line soon becomes ludicrous, too. The eponymous truth machine helps create a perfect world where all crime and deception are steadily eliminated and everybody lives in bliss. I would have been more entertained if Halperin had shown the truth machine taking society in a completely different direction, revealing a hidden, sinister side or some bizarre characteristic (a la "1984"). Instead his Utopia is bland and homogenous and, as a result, uninteresting. Frankly I'd be bored to tears in his kind of world.
It is a remarkable first novel. The characterization is excellent and compelling. The story is an equal partner to the ideas that abound. There are several sub-plots that are almost as satisfying as the major theme about the societal impact of a device that compells truthfulness in all aspects of human interaction. Pete's complex character and his relationships with women and with his life long friends David and Diana West are well portrayed as are his relationships and interaction with his demons Reece and Scoggins. I even enjoyed the character of 22g CP-TLMos, the super computer reporter who relates the major part of this work.
My great regret is that we don't have our own phenomenally gifted Pete Robinson to create a Truth Machine for us and to usher in the new era of world wide understanding and communication.
This is a thoughtful, absorbing, highly readable and most important statement about our possible future or lack thereof.
Very highly recommended.
Top reviews from other countries
The book, though written in 1995, writes a lengthy and detailed paragraph at the start of each chapter detailing the world news at the time, that you could believe would be happening at these periods.
Also, the book throws up some moral choices that gets the reader thinking, rather than just using the book for entertainment.
I would recommend this book to everyone !!
and you will see that lying, prevent us from finding, or undertaking the solutions,
a very positive book,