THE ABSOLVED — the sophomore cyberpunk dystopian novel from author Matthew Binder was released December 4, 2018 with one of today’s most exciting new small press publishers, Black Spot Books. It’s a recommended read for tech, AI/automation, dystopian fiction fans.
THE ABSOLVED is already being buzzed about by a diverse cast of bold-faced names, with early blurbs from critically acclaimed novelist David Burr Gerrard (“a funny, fast-paced novel with its finger on this country’s dying pulse“), late night celebrity talk show host Seth Meyers (“a darkly funny look at the future we’re most likely stuck with“), constitutional law scholar and polemicist-extraordinaire Alan Dershowitz (“this book will keep you up at night wondering what our future holds”), Columbia University professor John Cunningham, widely regarded as one of the most important academics in A.I. today (“a journey that feels as poignant and honest in today’s world as it does in Binder’s techno-dystopia“), and more.
From partisan politics to data privacy, “curated” content to self-driving cars, farm-to-table to big box retail, Universal Basic Income to progressive tax policy, THE ABSOLVED spares no one and nothing in its irreverent and incisive examination of contemporary culture — and disturbing, often laugh-out-loud funny vision of what our world might look like in the not-so-distant future.
Set in 2036, THE ABSOLVED follows Henri — a wealthy physician, husband, father, and serial philanderer who is also one of the relatively few people to still have a job. Automation and other technological advances have led to unemployment so severe that many people are no longer expected to work and are now known as “The Absolved.”
Meanwhile, it’s election season, and a candidate from a radical fringe party called the Luddites is calling for an end to the “Divine Rights of Machines.” After Henri is displaced from his job, two Luddite sympathizers—whom Henri has befriended at his local bar—frame him for an anti-technology terrorist act. The prospect of Henri’s salvation comes at the cost of foregoing his guiding principles in life. This new vision for the world, after all, just might prove better than the technological advancements that, paradoxically, have left humanity out in the cold.
Get a copy for your book collection or as a Christmas gift for the reader in your family.