The Circle

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Thorndike Press, 2014 - Fiction - 631 pages
6 Reviews
"The Circle" is the exhilarating new novel from Dave Eggers, best-selling author of "A Hologram for the King, "a finalist for the National Book Award.
When Mae Holland is hired to work for the Circle, the world's most powerful internet company, she feels she's been given the opportunity of a lifetime. The Circle, run out of a sprawling California campus, links users' personal emails, social media, banking, and purchasing with their universal operating system, resulting in one online identity and a new age of civility and transparency. As Mae tours the open-plan office spaces, the towering glass dining facilities, the cozy dorms for those who spend nights at work, she is thrilled with the company's modernity and activity. There are parties that last through the night, there are famous musicians playing on the lawn, there are athletic activities and clubs and brunches, and even an aquarium of rare fish retrieved from the Marianas Trench by the CEO. Mae can't believe her luck, her great fortune to work for the most influential company in the world--even as life beyond the campus grows distant, even as a strange encounter with a colleague leaves her shaken, even as her role at the Circle becomes increasingly public. What begins as the captivating story of one woman's ambition and idealism soon becomes a heart-racing novel of suspense, raising questions about memory, history, privacy, democracy, and the limits of human knowledge.

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User Review  - eclecticdodo - LibraryThing

Read for one librarything one book, and because this sort of book appeals to me. Mae lands her dream job at social network the Circle, so why can't everyone else see how great things are? It's ... Read full review

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The protagonist of the book is a female who has been brainwashed into the whole propaganda of privacy being theft. It's definitely an interesting concept, and at times thought-provoking because of how many parallels you can draw to real-life social media and its impact - but good god, was it boring. It became so irritating having to hear her dull, brainwashed thoughts drone on and on about the greatness of a privacy-free dystopia. It was annoying to be subjected to her boorish, mindless thoughts constantly. The message was too heavy-handed and obnoxious. It was beat into your head with a hammer. Why devote two pages of Bailey preaching about why nobody should have secrets? Did eggers think that if he talked about it long enough, readers would start becoming convinced that it was actually a good idea? No, we get the fucking point. Move on with the story. We're not complete imbeciles. The protagonist was annoying and exhausting to listen to. The story line was extremely predictable and flat. I feel like it was an idea that could have been profound and intelligent but it was just executed terribly. It made me so mad that I spent an entire day reading this book because I loved every eggers book I've read before, to be so disappointed. Man this sucked. It sucked so much I had to go online and express my profound disappointment on a stupid review. Don't waste your money buying it in hardback and spending your entire day off reading it.  

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About the author (2014)

Dave Eggers grew up near Chicago and graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He is the founder of McSweeney's, an independent publishing house in San Francisco that produces books, a quarterly journal of new writing ("McSweeney's Quarterly Concern"), and a monthly magazine, "The Believer." McSweeney's publishes Voice of Witness, a nonprofit book series that uses oral history to illuminate human rights crises around the world. In 2002, he cofounded 826 Valencia, a nonprofit youth writing and tutoring center in San Francisco's Mission District. Sister centers have since opened in seven other American cities under the umbrella of 826 National, and like-minded centers have opened in Dublin, London, Copenhagen, Stockholm, and Birmingham, Alabama, among other locations. His work has been nominated for the National Book Award, the Pulitzer Prize, and the National Book Critics Circle Award, and has won the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, France's Prix Medicis, ""Germany's Albatross Prize, the National Magazine Award, and the American Book Award. Eggers lives in Northern California with his family.

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