At a Glance
Author: Megan Angelo
Published: January 14, 2020 by Graydon Books
Genre: Fiction, Science Fiction
Goodreads Rating: 4.01 out of 5
My Rating: ★★★★☆
“Orla Cadden dreams of literary success, but she’s stuck writing click-bait articles to survive in NYC… until her new, ambitious, wannabe-A-lister roommate Floss comes up with a plan to launch them both into the high-profile lives they so desperately crave. It’s only when Orla and Floss abandon all pretense of ethics that social media responds with the most terrifying feedback of all: overwhelming success.
Thirty-five years later, in the community of Constellation, California, celebrities like Marlow Clipp live every moment of the day on camera. The instant feedback of her twelve million loyal followers dictates everything from Marlow’s clothing choices to the way she smiles. And despite the corporate sponsors who would do anything, horrible things even, to keep her on-screen, a stunning revelation will compel Marlow to make a run for it. And thus the hunt for Marlow Clipp begins.
Followers traces the paths of Orla, Floss and Marlow as they wind through time toward each other and toward a cataclysmic act of terrorism that sends America into lasting upheaval. At turns wry and tender, bleak and hopeful, this darkly funny story reminds us of the dark things that could await us at the crossroads of technology and our celebrity-obsessed culture.”
What would you do to gain follower on social media? Would you compromise on your morals to be ‘famous’?
The Follower’s story line is broken between two timelines and told from multiple perspectives. We have Orla, a wanna be writer who in 2015 works for a gossip blog. Floss, a wanna be social media influencer, who’s really only interested in being famous. Last we have Marlow, who in 2051, and at the age of 35 is finally starting to question her life. Each women’s’ life is extremely different from the next but all of their lives are intertwine in a way we don’t expect.
Marlow, is my favorite character. Born during ‘The Spill’ which was an emotional terrorist attack on the United States, she lives in Constellation California with her every move recorded. She’s a modern day (2051) reality TV star and everything she does is quantified by the number of followers she gains/losses. It was extremely hard to imagine walking through life with the constant thought that everyone was watching me. But it also makes you really think about how we already use Instagram society media to portray only what we want people see. Angelo does a great job of depicting, both through Marlow’s narrative and the early years of Floss and Orla, the impact of social media on our lives and our health.
I really enjoyed the dystopian vibes Angelo gave us as well. The ‘Spill’ was an emotional terror attack on the US, which started with knocking out all devices. Then slowly started to release secrets of the general public to provide the emotion terror aspect. I really liked that even with the technology apocalypse, the world in 2051 is still running fairly the same as in 2015. There wasn’t a huge explosion everything is wiped out type of dystopian. To me the dystopian effect seemed more realistic with it’s slow exposure of ‘the fog’ and the way technology was hacked. The biggest difference is the use of devices. No more blue screen and more big brother watching over you.
This book was such a fast read, I could barely put it down. I felt that I was reading the script of a reality TV series, which was thoroughly entertaining. A solid ★★★★☆ rating.
If you think you’d like to read this book, it comes out Tuesday January 14th and you can pre-order a copy HERE!
I hope you enjoyed my thoughts on Followers. If you liked this review please let me know either by commenting below or by visiting my instagram @speakingof_books. Huge thanks to Graydon House and Bookishfirst for my advanced copy of the book.
About the Author
Megan has written about television, film, women and pop culture, and motherhood for publications including The New York Times, Glamour (where she was a contributing editor and wrote a column on women and television), Elle, The Wall Street Journal, Marie Claire, and Slate. She is a native of Quakertown, Pennsylvania and a graduate of Villanova University. She currently lives in Pennsylvania with her family. FOLLOWERS is her first novel.