Sunday 16 March 2014

No Harm Can Come To a Good Man - James Smythe
I love books by James Smythe, the man is a genius. No Harm Can Come to a Good Man is another example of just how brilliantly he writes. The story is simple. ClearVista is an app that searches out probability; it draws on all the available data out there on the internet, and can answer any question accurately. It is used to check on the safety of flights, the best route for your satnav and to help you decide what car to buy; everyone uses it daily.
Laurence Walker uses it. Laurence is a successful and highly popular Senator. He has served his country in the forces, has a happy and stable family life, and is tipped to be the next Democrat nomination for the Presidency. Everyone knows him, and everyone loves him. As the first step on the campaign trail all he has to do is answer 1000 questions for ClearVista and get the promotional video that will show the predicted outcome of his campaign. He is a rising star in US politics, what could possibly go wrong?
Laurence Walker's life can go wrong..... Tragedy hits him personally, and ClearVista proves to be too good at predicting the potential outcomes of it's own predictions.

Is there a conspiracy to bring down Senator Walker? Are all predictions simply self-fulfilling? Or is Laurence Walker actually not such a good man at all?

This manages to be both a chilling look at a world totally reliant on a piece of software where it's predictions become fact no matter how unlikely they seem, and also a brilliant look at a family in crisis as their world falls apart around them.

You are what the world believes you to be.

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