Live via Zoom:
Thursday, May 27, 6:00 PM ET
Nicole Kornher-Stace presents Firebreak
In conversation with Amal El-Mohtar
A steadfast heroine dares to face down a tyrannical corporation in Nicole Kornher-Stace’s novel Firebreak, a dystopian science fiction debut with a biting anti-capitalist premise and allusions to Ready Player One, Black Mirror, and Twitch streamers. In 2134, competing mega-corporations have taken over the U.S., splitting the remaining 45 states between them. (The rest are submerged under the ocean.) New Liberty City is divided between the two authoritarian powers, and its inhabitants are brutally subjected to a perpetual state of civil war, while residents like Mallory spend time playing a virtual reality video game that mirrors the events of real life combat. Living in a converted hotel room with several roommates, Mallory's only goal is to eke out a hardscrabble living to afford her water ration, until a chance encounter with a real super-soldier forces her to question whether the heroes in the world’s most popular game may be a clue to something more nefarious. Soon, she finds herself in the kind of danger she’s only experienced through her avatar. Kornher-Stace discusses her book with Amal El-Mohtar, award-winning author of This Is How You Lose the Time War.