BOOK REVIEW Sibyl by Simon Sloane

Sibyl was given to me by Authoright in exchange for an honest review.

The blurb;

Flamboyant entrepreneur Hugo Hyde is shocked when his imminent death is predicted by Sibyl, the never-wrong artificial intelligence that he created. When Sibyl goes rogue and launches a global cyber attack, Hyde and his team are forced to seek refuge with their rival, a ruthless billionaire with his own designs on their invention.

As Hyde attempts to unveil the traitor within his inner circle, powerful forces conspire against him in a race for control of quantum computing, a new technology bound to change our future. Will Hyde escape from a cesspool of betrayal, greed and jealousy?

Sibyl tells the story of Hugo Hyde, a cocaine-addicted tech magnate who has created an AI that can predict the future. Sibyl then predicts Hyde’s death and sends him on an international goose-chase. Hyde’s eclectic team travel with him and try to figure out exactly what happened, all while trying not to get caught up with a ruthless Arab billionaire.

The concept behind Sibyl is great; an AI gone rogue which affects billions of smartphone users, and a tech genius on the run and wanted by the authorities; the ideas behind the book are great. The actual story doesn’t quite live up to the potential. It does however, contain a whole load of action and it had me roaring through the pages. There’s a lot to be said for being given a wild ride.

The characters within the novel are decent enough, with the exception of one or two. Again, it comes down to the potential of the characters, there’s one in particular; The Serpent that could have been absolutely frightening if given a bit more page-time. I would have loved a proper back story on him. Still, he is a good character, and one that adds a lot to certain parts of the story. And then there’s Hyde, a guy that I didn’t quite warm to until the very end, he was definitely a slow burner. I think if he’d been a full-blown asshole then I could have lived with that, similarly, if he’d been a softie, I could have bought that too, but he just ends up somewhere in the middle and I struggled to buy it.

I enjoyed the tech side of the story, and it didn’t confuse me or patronise me, something I’ve found with these kinds of stories, and I appreciated that. It provided a good backdrop to the chase-and-run sequences and had me constantly turning the pages. There is also a few twists and turns at the end, something I did not see coming. It surprised me and I liked it, it added a little more to the story and the characters.

If it sounds as though I didn’t enjoy the book, that’s wrong, I really did! The action was constant, well-written and detailed effectively. I have also been given the opportunity to read Shiva, the sequel to Sibyl, and I’m really looking forward to it, I want to read more from Hugo Hyde.

All-in-all, this is a story that moves quickly, slick-as-hell, which means it also misses the odd emotional beat, but still, count me in for more Hugo Hyde.

You can find Simon Sloane and Sibyl at Amazon.com

As always thanks for reading. Please like and share this review to bring some attention to the author and to the shady little corner of the internet within which my blog resides.

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