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Cloudnigh by Spinner

Humanity has evolved. Our minds have not. 

Roman Fairchild is your average reclusive bin-cron—until the government’s stonewall-busting war game comes crashing own on his doorstep, bringing forth an impending armageddon.


A novel, no longer online

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Listed: Mar 1, 2010

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Editorial Reviews

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Editor’s First Impression

By Linda Schoales, editor

Feb 28, 2010: The first chapter is well-written. Roman’s AI has been monitoring the news and found something "it" wants to share with him.

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Most Helpful Member Reviews

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So far, so good! Characters are Cloudnigh’s strength

By Lizzy, member

Mar 3, 2010: Cloudnigh is a cyberpunk story set in the bad part of town in a post-Earth society. The culture is vaguely North American – some hybrid of hipster and grunge – as explored by a group of late-teens immersed in the music scene. As of this writing, seven chapters and two supplements are up, with updates scheduled twice a week.

The main character is the intriguing Roman Fairchild, a likeable guy who has overcome quite a few demons and is coping reasonably well with some interesting disabilities. His main skill is building computers, his weaknesses include conducting massive amounts of bioelectricity, and some social anxiety.

There seems to be some political unrest, but the plot thus far centres around Roman’s anxiety over an imminent face-to-face meeting with his longtime internet-girlfriend Kyrie.

None of the characters are cookie-cutter, and they have their share of flaws. Roman’s issues with electrical discharge stem from his having been born with three hearts. His sister Victoria is recovering from a bout with cancer, and still chain smokes. Their mother is a nymphomaniac, and their father is absentee. Roman’s best friend is agoraphobic, has difficulty speaking, and requires constant auditory stimulation to the point where he has a prescription for it. I’m not sure if they live on a pile of radioactive waste, or are exposed to a lot of solar radiation, or what, but I hope the above-average incidence of tragedy is explained.

The first and second chapters contain a lot of buzzwords and by-the-way exposition, and I’m not sure I picked up on the proper definitions of any of them, or if they’re even important. Still, the immersive characters are enough to pull the reader through difficult-to-understand paragraphs.

Both of the inserted supplements are chat transcripts from different points in Kyrie and Roman’s friendship. These are my favourite parts of the story. They are the perfect way to show how the text relationship is so different from an in-person relationship. The contrast is important, and anyone who is used to communicating in a chat or IM will empathize.

I liked: – the technology – the supplementary material – the characters – the culture

I wasn’t so into: – the challenge of keeping up with the politics of the world – writing is adjective and adverb heavy, which gets distracting – I found the text TINY, but this is easy to fix by hitting Cmd + a few times in Firefox, Safari, or Chrome.

Cloudnigh is an inventive and exciting story, that I will continue to read!

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