418 I am a Teapot by Edgar Scott
Publisher/date: Saevitia Publications (March 23, 2021)
Genre: Hard Sci-fi
Rating: T (there were no innuendo or anything like that, but the heavy topics are too complicated for a MG reader IMO.)
418 I am a Teapot is an error code that indicates that the server refuses to brew coffee because it is, in fact, a teapot.
And it’s also a title of a sci-fi dystopian book I’ve just finished by Edgar Scott!
This book follows the story of a “staff” who has been in an accident causing him to, well, “wake up” is the best I can describe it.
In a world where people can give up their freedom for being literally constantly online, “staff” have an interface installed into their brain that allows their body to be programmed to do drudge labor (trash service, assembly lines, customer service) while they remain online in what is really a cush virtual prison.
When staff #418 wakes up, he wonders why his life is less valuable than other people.
This is a sci-fi allegory on slavery. It’s written from the POV of both 418 and his owner, King (a wink and a nudge again) who wonders the same thing - why does he believe a staff’s life to be worth less than his.
This book was a bit monologue-y (for obvious reasons) and the writing style is very similar to Dune. I have a tendency to prefer much more emotionally charged stories, but it was still a really interesting read and even has some discussion questions in the back to make you think.
If this was up my alley I'd give it 4 stars. It's well written and would be an excellent high school/college lit pick for a teacher. Check this one out!