Review: Digital Idols by Jon Frater

31829801Published: September 2nd 2016 by Desperate Measures Press

Language read: English

Genre: Science Fiction

Pages: 246

Format: Ebook

Rating: 1/5 stars 1stjerner

Synopsis: In the depths of the Tarterus Corporation, a unique experiment in bioengineering has gone wrong . . . and right. The world’s economy is controlled by building sized “Megabrains” which can only be controlled by cloned “Genetics.” A young pair of twins, specially created by the world-regulating Bioengineering Guild, has just discovered their roles in a plot to micromanage the world’s population . . . and want no part of it. Blade Runner meets Barbarians at the Gate as Norma and Cloris go head-to-head to decide the fate of the world–and settling their family feud is the only way to do it!

In a call-back to “The City of Iron and Light,” which appeared in Chronicle Worlds: Feyland, Digital Idols is the story of Norma Phastlight, the only Genetic to ever walk out of the Tarterus Crop.’s laboratories and try to navigate the cold, hard, world of 22nd century hypercapitalist America. – Goodreads



I was curious about Netgalley so I made a profile. This book looked interesting so I choose it for my first read and review for them. I’m planning on reading more books from Netgalley, maybe one book a month. I don’t know yet.

I’ll start by saying that I didn’t like this book that much. I had problems with the writing style, I was confused a lot when I was reading it. It took me half the book to understand some things and get into the story, and even then I got confused. I felt like a big question mark throughout the whole story.

There was a lot of new futuristic words and things in the book, like Datalink, Neuro-Tail, Megabrain, Genetics, etc. The author didn’t explain well enough for me to understand all of it at first. I kind of figured it out, but it took me a while.


I also had problems understanding and envision when Norma(the main character) was “Linked Up”, and how it worked. I wish I could tell you more about it but I don’t know how to explain it. It’s like being uploaded to the internet and the mind somehow materializes inside it.

I kind of felt that this book was all over the place and that it was very messy. The story line kept changing and I had no clue where the story was going.


I must say though that the story had some interesting elements, and I wouldn’t have finished this book if it wasn’t for the story. I liked the futuristic world, I love good worldbuilding so I want to know more about this world and its backstory.

In the beginning it wasn’t hard to follow the side characters, but then we got introduced to so many characters. For me they all blended into each other due to lack of character development. I had problems distinguish them from each other. The only one we got a bit of backstory on was Jack. I think that made her my favorite.

In conclusion, I only finished this book because I was curios about the story. I wanted to see how it was going to end, and hoped it would grow on me. Sadly it didn’t, so I gave this book 1 stars. I didn’t like the writing, poor character development, confusing, and the only redeeming part was the potential of the world and the story. This book was just not for me.

One more thing. I guess it isn’t that important, but I really don’t understand the title of this book. I understand DIGITAL, but what’s up with IDOLS? I don’t get it.



I received this copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

9 thoughts on “Review: Digital Idols by Jon Frater

  1. I can see why you chose that title, and also why it was not that good. I don’t know. They say don’t judge a book by its cover but in this case…..Then again, I’m biased against badly photoshopped covers with people in the front. I feel like we’re supposed to imagine how they look like. With a picture like that it sort of ruins its purpose.
    At least the ones where you can see their face.
    I think what alot of authors do wrong is to make a too complex world for the reader to enter. Which again is a product of being super into the story and passionate, which is good! Its just hard for someone outside that world to get in sometimes. I keep that in mind when doing my stories, its easy to forget you’re writing something that other people need an introduction to. And it can’t be too long either, then people would lose their interest.
    Good review!


  2. Pingback: Life Update #3
  3. What a bummer! Isn’t it called Digital Idols because the characters aren’t ‘real’? I hope your next experience with a NetGalley book will be a better one :).


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