The Circle

The Circle

A Novel

Book - 2013
Average Rating:
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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.
Publisher: New York : Alfred A. Knopf ; San Francisco : McSweeney's Books, 2013
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9780345807298
0345807294
9780385351393
0385351399
Characteristics: 491 pages ; 23 cm

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To be released April 2017; starring Tom Hanks and Emma Watson.


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LPL_MattS Apr 21, 2018

Fans of 1984 will enjoy this modern reworking, where an overtly totalitarian regime is replaced by a more subtle, insidious threat in the form of a social media behemoth gaining more and more control. A book that feels more timely than ever, it's one of my favorite works by Eggers.

t
tjdickey
Apr 07, 2018

Imagine a world where a giant social media company is using its progressive ethos to try to change the world. It claims to know you better than you do yourself (just like Facebook and Google already claim), and works forward from a motto "Everything that happens must be known" (echoes of a motto OCLC already uses). Pretty soon we have fleets of cameras throughout the known world (nobly to solve crime, of course), and mass digitization of all texts, and social media owning all electronic currency for all purchases, and running elections in all democracies, and even apprehending fugitives, and making it illegal to opt out of sharing on social media because all "SECRETS ARE LIES," and any personal "PRIVACY IS THEFT."
Does this all-too-possible vision scare you? It should...

CRRL_MegRaymond Feb 09, 2018

Working for a corporation dedicated to Doing Good has to be great, right? For Mae, it's a dream come true, until it's ... not.

b
BrandonBlanchard
Feb 05, 2018

The book is a fantastic read. It's scary imagining how close we are living to Dave Egger's world; good thing Amazon, Google, Wal-mart, and Facebook are still separate companies... for now anyway. I'm not entirely sold on Mae's character however. Though sweet, there's something very artificial about her.

m
mnack_0
Dec 02, 2017

No literary masterpiece by any means - but a very credible story in the not-too-distant future (I believe that future may already be here!) about how we are allowing technology to take control of our lives. This one will keep you up nights thinking about that for sure!

m
mamabadger56
Oct 25, 2017

A fascinating book. In spite of a few small flaws in the writing (like some heavy-handed symbolism) it's well written and suspenseful. The story is the natural grandchild of Orwell's 1984, updated for new and different threats to our freedom.

PimaLib_JB Oct 09, 2017

I saw the movie a while ago in theaters, and just got around to reading the book it was based on. Highly recommended! It's got so much more depth than the movie, although it ends on a much bleaker note...

l
LauraSteinert
Sep 28, 2017

A great piece of science-fiction patterned after the old masters. Much better written that Fahrenheit 451 or 1984, and much more timely. I imagine the company sounds like Nirvana to many 20-somethings although it sounded like Hell on Earth to me. The subtle brainwashing, the addition to technology, the endorphin rush of instant gratification, the measuring of self-worth based upon how many likes one accumulates during the day and how many re-tweets amassed, are all horrifying to me. I certainly feel this speaks to our society today.

a
adyglesias1
Aug 16, 2017

I hated the book at first. Hated. It. But then I stopped analyzing it as a novel and looked beyond the plotlessness and lack of decent character development and started to read between the lines, see what the author was trying to say. After that, I LOVED it. I talked about it non-stop and still refer to it. It's long and slow for sure, but stick with it, skim where you have to. But read it. It's good and relevant.

If you have trouble understanding it, ask me, and I'll help you analyze and understand it.

k
kwsmith
Jul 30, 2017

This insightful novel explores the hidden dangers of social media and the powerful private corporations who examine, rank, and classify our public social data. Mae is an ambitious young woman who joins an internet company called The Circle. How much of herself is Mae willing to sacrifice for the goals of The Circle? The writing is simple and not particularly impressive, but the novel's subject matter is both relevant and interesting.

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clairemars
Jun 05, 2017

clairemars thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

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