Transmission – Hari Kunzru

Synopsis – An Indian computer programmer gets a job in America. However, disillusioned when he loses the job, he releases a relentless computer virus that drastically changes his life and others.

Verdict – If you’re looking for a nice quick and entertaining book to read that doesn’t require a debriefing after you’re finished, Transmission is a good choice.

I enjoyed Transmission quite a bit. It definitely is a book of stereotypes. A young Indian computer programmer is given what appears to be a golden opportunity and ends up being exploited by Big Business. A hotshot marketing executive overextends himself and his company. A young starlet is at the whim of her controlling mother and Bollywood insiders. But, it’s OK. I think they came together into an interesting plot that thankfully didn’t rely on a murder mystery like every other book I see in the bookstore. I think he did particularly well on the character of Guy Swift. Guy rocketed to the top with a mission statement touting abstract pseudo-psychological nonsense, and then ruined his business with too many leisure expenditures and too few clients. Kunzru appropriately showed the frailty of platitudes when they have no actual substance behind them. I think he also accurately portrait a personality like Guy very well – Claiming an existential epiphany of modern living and secluding himself to the countryside, trying to sell home made pottery. Although, I think Guy would also be the type to start his own religious cult.

I think Kunzru created a book that’s charming for what it is. It’s a light read with an interesting plot that hasn’t been battered and abused ad naseam.


~ by miyagisan on April 2, 2008.

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