Pirate Cinema
Cory Doctorow

Trent McCauley is sixteen, brilliant, and obsessed with one thing: making movies on his computer by reassembling footage from popular films he downloads from the net. In near-future Britain, this is more illegal than ever. The punishment for being caught three times is to cut off your entire household from the internet for a year – no work, school, health or money benefits.

Trent thinks he is too clever for that to happen, but it does, and nearly destroys his family. Shamed and shattered, Trent runs away to London, where slowly he learns the ways of staying alive on the streets. He joins artists and activists fighting a new bill that will jail too many, especially minors, at one stroke. Jem introduces him to the Jammie Dodgers, beautiful brilliant “26” to love and cemetery parties.

Things look bad. Parliament is in power of a few wealthy media conglomerates. But the powers-that-be haven’t entirely reckoned with the power of a gripping movie to change people’s minds …

Pirate Cinema book cover

This was an inspired novel. The idea of the UK with a Great Firewall of such scope and power is very scary indeed, and I liked Trent, for all his bad points.

The sixth chapter really hit home (it’s not just me who goes home and feels small, after all), and the whole ethos of the story just truly rocks.

The ending was a bit of a rush, giving the story a summer holiday, now it’s over and back to it kind of a feel. But I can’t complain because while it hit, what a hit.

Published by Sean Randall

I am an avid reader, technologist and disability advocate living in the middle of England with my wife, daughter and pets.

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