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Feed by M.T. Anderson
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Feed (original 2002; edition 2012)

by M.T. Anderson

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3,1893561,741 (3.81)218
Member:bethlynlucas
Title:Feed
Authors:M.T. Anderson
Info:Candlewick (2012), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 320 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
Tags:Dystopia, Science Fiction, Satire

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Feed by M. T. Anderson (2002)

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Showing 1-5 of 356 (next | show all)
Telemarketer (TM): "Good Afternoon. May I speak to Virna Tendean?"
Me: "Speaking."
TM: "This is CI Bank and we're here to confirm that you're on the payroll via CI Bank."
Me: "..the what? pei what?"
TM: "Payroll. Your wages are paid through our Bank."
Me: "..oh, ok.."
TM: "We'd like you to know that you're now eligible for extra line of credit of 24 million rupiahs."
Me: "Not interested"
TM: "Sorry? You'll never know when you need the extra cash, ma'am. Please think again."
Me: "Ok, I'll think about it and let you know tomorrow."
TM: "I'll call you again tomorrow. Thank you ma'am."

I was like, ma'am..I got money tucked away nicely in the Bank that's not yours so due to your impoliteness, I've decided to take my business elsewhere.



I think the future is now. And in not so distant time from now, marketing aspects will be streamlined into an online feed designed specifically for a customer in mind. Maybe in my lifetime they would still be figuring out how to tap into the Brain, but in 200 years time, why not.

I was reading [book:The Tell-Tale Brain|8574712], a neuroscience non-fiction, when I picked this book. I've heard about Feed since two years ago and it landed on my local bookstore few weeks back. Coincidentally, the Brain plays an important role in both books. Not as much as I want to in Feed, but it's interesting that the author came up with the idea in the first place.

The book started with Titus, a teenager not unlike the teens we'd see in our local mall - full of life as well as boredom, neglected by their busy parents, and extra line of credits without much worrying how to pay them back. Kids just like my students who worry more about their Harlem Shake bits than studying for their Physics exams. Titus is living in the 'real' Information Age where marketing feed is installed in the Brain since a baby is born. The feed had been created, at first, solely for educational purposes, but as it is in our time, the marketers jump into the bandwagon because products can be sold directly to a customer by feeding the Brain with marketing gimmicks.

Titus went to the Moon with his buddies, and met Violet, his 'soulmate,' just like any other kids we saw in Twilight, or 500 Days of Summer, I guess. Unfortunately, Violet is of different breed. Her parents did not install feed into her Brain until she's 5 or 6 y.o., and by that time the Brain has fully developed. Violet's parents had to sign an agreement that they're fully aware of the consequences because installing this late may interfere with her body functions.

I started to enjoy reading this almost halfway through the book, because I had to overcome my intense dislike of the 'teen-talk' - it can be exhausting to follow, like, whatev.. :D Apparently, in Titus' time, even most grown-ups have lost the art of language since they're too used to receiving online feed that only need 140 characters or less (hello, Twitter!) or, even worse, online pictures (YouTube's still alive by then!)

Trouble started when, early in the book, their feeds were hacked and they had to spend some time on the Moon hospital. Titus fell in love with Violet's strange opposition to the digital norm. When they returned to Earth, Violet started to experience what is equivalent to computer breakdown. It reminds me of how my 2006 Acer (full with Adobe apps and Microsoft wares) struggles to keep up with my writing and online activities with 10 windows and more open all at once.

Through Violet's deteriorating condition, Titus came to see the life (Violet's thought) he's missing. He met her eccentric father, who is not really eccentric but love science and teaching. Violet even shared about how her father and mother met, and how he finally decided to let her daughter has a feed installed. You would not want to miss this one!

I used to live in the US before the age of YouTube, at the time when it took a few programmers just to come up with a simple page that says 'Hello, World!' - and even before those pesky marketing ads to the right bar on my Fb page came along, I was bombarded with TV ads claiming that using the right teeth whitener would attract the right kind of men. (The men has yet to come, in my case..:P)

Overall, I'm impressed with Anderson's ability to spook, if not me, the thousands of readers reading this book. However, I would agree with some of you who claim that the people this book addresses to would never even pick up this book, or any other book. I'm just hoping that Education will not deteriorate as much as the culture of digital greed. Anderson's book send a warning that neglecting proper Education will only degrade the quality of life, and make the gaps between the classes ever more wider than before. ( )
  pwlifter300 | Feb 28, 2014 |
What a disturbing book. It portrays teens in a future where consumerism run amok has destroyed the planet and all human decency. Computers have been implanted into people's bodies so that they can have a continuous feed of news, gossip, product information, advertising, and generally distracting trivia. A kid meets a girl who is different; she wants to be normal, but she also wants poetry and nature and life, all of which are incompatible with people's one and only purpose: consuming. Soon you realize that the constant attention to things and gossip has not only brought out the worst in teens, they are merely acting on the decisions adults have made. Among the creepy things - meat is raised artificially, great giant, dripping walls of it. School (TM) has been privatized and is pretty much where we're headed only worse..People are getting lesions because of the toxicity of their world. These become fashionable, though clearly people are falling apart, quite literally. Any solution that isn't profitable is out of the question, though it seems there will soon be a world revolt against the United States,which has brought on environmental collapse. Perhaps the most disturbing thing of all is that people are mostly passive - and the shallowness is really scary. Stunningly inventive, brutal, and thought-provoking. Not a good cure for insomnia. Whew, what a horrifying story - and amazing that it was written before Facebook launched. This pairs interestingly with Dave Egger's The Circle, which depicts a future that's about ten minutes from now.
  bfister | Jan 2, 2014 |
In a future America where the internet is inside everyone's head, Titus and his friends are regular teenagers just looking for a good time. At a club on the moon during spring break, they meet Violet, a homeschooled outsider hoping to experience regular teenage life. After their feeds are hacked by dissidents, Violet's feed begins to malfunction, and Titus must choose between this interesting girl he's just met and his longtime but shallow friends. I'm not going to lie to you: Titus is not a good or admirable person, but he's actually pretty realistic. He's self-absorbed and wishes bad things would just go away and not bother him. I'm sure many of us have wished an inconveniently ill person could just "get over it" but unlike Titus, we readers have a moral compass reminding us that their trauma is not about us. This is a dystopia clearly inspired by the inanity of the internet; most of the characters talk like they're on Tumblr. I found it an interesting and worthwhile read, but if you need to have some level of fondness for the main character in a book, this story will likely be pretty hard to take. If nothing else, it reminded me of the importance of empathy and kindness. ( )
  melydia | Nov 5, 2013 |
This review is based on the ebook sample

Rating: might read

Snotty underage kid goes with his mates to visit the moon (or mars?). Basically he whines about how crap it is.

Reminds me of the American classic "catcher in the rye".
  alsocass | Oct 12, 2013 |
YALSA Outstanding Books for the College Bound; BBYA 2002. RGG: Sci-fi. Boring and confusing.
  rgruberexcel | Oct 3, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 356 (next | show all)
Subversive, vigorously conceived, painfully situated at the juncture where funny crosses into tragic, ''Feed'' demonstrates that young-adult novels are alive and well and able to deliver a jolt. The fact that it is a finalist for the National Book Award is in itself a good sign.
 
FEED is laugh-out-loud funny in its satire, but at the same time it is absolutely terrifying.
 

» Add other authors (4 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
M. T. Andersonprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Baker, David AaronNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Dedication
To all those who resist the feed-M.T.A
First words
We went to the moon to have fun, but the moon turned out to completely suck.
Quotations
"Everything we've grown up with the stories on the feed, the games, all of that it's all streamlining our personalities so we're easier to sell to."
You know, I think death is shallower now. It used to be a hole you fell into and kept falling. Now it's just a blank.
But we have entered a new age. We are a new people. It is now the age of oneiric culture, the culture of dreams.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Wikipedia in English (1)

Book description
Titus and his friends are typical middle class teens sometime in the far future. They go to School (TM) which is owned by the big corporations. But mostly they listen to their feed, a smart Internet connection directly connected into their brains. The feed knows what they like, it knows what they want and it knows the coolest thing of the moment. The feed markets products to them constantly and also allows them to have private chats with anyone else any time. Then one night Titus meets Violet, a girl a little off the grid. She didn't get a feed until she was 7 and mistrusts the marketing. Amusingly, her father is a professor of dead languages, like Fortran and Basic. Then one night a hacker protester infects their feeds and they learn something about life without the feed.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0763622591, Paperback)

This brilliantly ironic satire is set in a future world where television and computers are connected directly into people's brains when they are babies. The result is a chillingly recognizable consumer society where empty-headed kids are driven by fashion and shopping and the avid pursuit of silly entertainment--even on trips to Mars and the moon--and by constant customized murmurs in their brains of encouragement to buy, buy, buy.

Anderson gives us this world through the voice of a boy who, like everyone around him, is almost completely inarticulate, whose vocabulary, in a dead-on parody of the worst teenspeak, depends heavily on three words: "like," "thing," and the second most common English obscenity. He's even made this vapid kid a bit sympathetic, as a product of his society who dimly knows something is missing in his head. The details are bitterly funny--the idiotic but wildly popular sitcom called "Oh? Wow! Thing!", the girls who have to retire to the ladies room a couple of times an evening because hairstyles have changed, the hideous lesions on everyone that are not only accepted, but turned into a fashion statement. And the ultimate awfulness is that when we finally meet the boy's parents, they are just as inarticulate and empty-headed as he is, and their solution to their son's problem is to buy him an expensive car.

Although there is a danger that at first teens may see the idea of brain-computers as cool, ultimately they will recognize this as a fascinating novel that says something important about their world. (Ages 14 and older) --Patty Campbell

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:40:47 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

In a future where most people have computer implants in their heads to control their environment, a boy meets an unusual girl who is in serious trouble. So says Titus, a teenager whose ability to read, write, and even think for himself has been almost completely obliterated by his "feed," a transmitter implanted directly into his brain. Feeds are a crucial part of life for Titus and his friends. After all, how else would they know where to party on the moon, how to get bargains at Weatherbee & Crotch, or how to accessorize the mysterious lesions everyone's been getting? But then Titus meets Violet, a girl who cares about what's happening to the world and challenges everything Titus and his friends hold dear. A girl who decides to fight the feed.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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