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War Surf Paperback – June 25, 2009

3.5 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

War surfing is the hobby of senior execs jaded by lives of security and power. They completely rebuilt the world economy, after all, and now there aren't enough thrills around. Nasir Deepra, part of a war-surfer team that broadcasts its escapades on the Net, falls in love with his young physical therapist, Sheeba, and brings her into the group, despite some objections. When the team then fails spectacularly because of her inexperience, and its ratings plummet, it decides to go to Heaven, a satellite rated at the highest level of difficulty for war surfing. Nasir initially objects but is worn down by his old friends--and Sheeba. Corporate secrets that Nasir has been trying to conceal for some time are waiting on Heaven, and he must face up to demons he helped create and the death he has avoided for two centuries as the situation on Heaven deteriorated. Buckner's thrilling, entertaining romp through a corporate-ruled world is also a consideration of immortality, boredom, and the changes necessary for continued vitality. Regina Schroeder
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 382 pages
  • Publisher: e-reads.com (June 25, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0759292493
  • ISBN-13: 978-0759292499
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,948,361 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By B. Merritt VINE VOICE on January 18, 2006
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Nasir Deepra, an executive in the 23rd century, is an Agonist, a group of men and women who've outlived their usefulness and are bored with life. So they use their ample wealth to run into war zones-many of them in orbit around the now polluted Earth-and film their daring activities. They have a huge fan-base who watch them on the Net, too, and the Agonists revel in all of the attention.

Nasir (the main character) is also in love with a beautiful physical therapist named Sheeba who hangs out with him because of his "multiplexed soul" and battered body-Nasir is 248 years old, kept young by nanotechnology that permeates every cell in his body.

But when a war surf goes awry and the Agonists lose their first place position amongst other surfers, something drastic has to be done. So they decide to go to Heaven, a class 10 difficulty war zone (1 being easy and 10 being the toughest), in order to get back on top.

Nasir is extremely hesitant to go, as he is on the board of directors that controls Heaven and knows why it's a class 10. But Sheeba helps talk him into going and it is here that everything falls apart ...

Nasir and Sheeba are captured by workers who control Heaven. Nasir has to come to terms with what he and his corporation have been doing to the men, women and children onboard this satellite. Twenty-third century unethical and immoral issues attack Nasir every second: giving blood, helping "workers" (lesser people), and coming to terms with his age and lack of usefulness. A "disease" runs rampant amongst Heaven's workers, and Nasir and Sheeba might very well become infected.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Buckner's new novel is set in the same post-environmental collapse world as her earlier Neurolink, this time among a group of aging executive-class extreme sports enthusiasts. They call themselves the Agonists, and their "extreme sport" is war surfing-taking fast, and thoroughly recorded, runs through the war zones of 23rd-century labor relations. Their leader is Nasir Deepra, two and a half centuries old, old enough that he lived through the collapse as an adult, and remembers an Earth whose surface was still habitable.

Nasir and his aging comrades are at the top of their sport, but they have a weakness they don't recognize yet: Nasir is infatuated with a beautiful physical therapist, Sheeba, who's in her twenties, and too well-adjusted to regard him as anything other than a father figure. Nasir, in his dogged pursuit of Sheeba, will do anything to please or impress her, including strong-arm his buddies into including her on their war surfs. This quickly goes-somewhat humorously-wrong, knocking the Agonists out of first place, and in fact down to fourth place, in the standings but, after some stressful moments melding Sheeba into the team while fatally weakening Nasir's ability to veto a surf he knows will be disastrous, a surf of the orbital factory called Heaven. Nasir is chairman of the board of the company that owns Heaven, and he knows what none of the others do-what the labor dispute is about, and why Provendia is so very determined to hide it.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
I picked up this book because I'd recently been going back and reading the Phillip K Dick winners (the annual award for best Sci-Fi in paperback.) This is the 2006 winner and, having just read such GREAT novels as Vacuum Diagrams, Altered Carbon, and Life, I had high expectations.

120 pages in I was ready to put the book down and move on to something else. This book is a mish-mash of clichés, boring stock characters that I found totally unredeeming, and painfully heavy-handed symbolism. There is a germ of a good idea here that I found, at times, enjoyable but it was not worth reading the entire novel.

Since there is a summary on the website and in other reviews, we already know who Nasir Deepra and Sheeba are. Nasir is vain and in lust with Sheeba. His friends are bored zillionaires who booze and drug themselves for entertainment. Sheeba is naivé and flakey.

Fine.

But their personalities are stock and assembled out of such painfully obvious clichés. None of them are painted in a way that is fresh or interesting. Nasir carries a mirror in his pocket which he is constantly pulling out to check his hair with. Anything Sheeba says to him throughout the course of the novel is GUARANTEED to be misinterpreted (there is never ONCE a moment when he doubts himself for going completely the opposite direction with what she says to him.) He gets jealous whenever anybody talks to her in the same way a six year old might. His friends go on benders for days at a time and approach death as though they were watching a cartoon. Sheeba is a physical therapist and is always spouting new age hippy jargon.
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