Eeastern Standard Tribe Review

Some time ago I finished Cory Doctorow’s Eastern Standard Tribe. I was meaning to write about it but I was preoccupied with some other stuff.

I’m reading Cory’s books in reverse – newest to oldest. I reviewed “Someone Comes to Town…” earlier. EST is his 3rd book (counting from the beginning, and the second book of his that I read). I know this is retarded but oh well.

In short – I liked it. It wasn’t as weird and as “Someone…” though. I think this book could be classified as a near-future fiction. It’s not cyberpunk yet, but it is a little to heavy on technology side to be classified mainstream action/adventure novel.

There seem to be an interesting time line pattern forming here. I’m currently reading Down and Out – which takes place in somewhat distant future. Then comes EST which takes place in near-future. Finally we get Someone which happens now, but in kindoff weird alternate reality. Heh, I’m wondering if Cory’s next book will be some kind of retro-sci-fi thing set in the past?

The book is enjoyable, but perhaps not as thought provoking as “Someone”. I actually liked the main character who is a “user experience engineer.” Which sounds like one of these dreadful pointless jobs that exists only to piss off software and hardware people 😛 He has some interesting ideas though. Besides, how can you not like a character who basically “lives” on irc 😛

Doctorow seems to have a thing for bitchy, moody, touchy women with explosive temperaments. Both Mimi from “Someone” and Linda from EST are the most annoying love interests ever. Mimi is scarred, confused and disturbed, and Linda is a total whore 😛 If Cory writes these things “from experience” then ouch… I hope that as a successful writer he is now having more luck meeting women that are not as messed up as his female characters.


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