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Year Zero by Rob Reid

Year Zero (edition 2012)

by Rob Reid

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7655725,992 (3.53)21
In the hilarious tradition of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Rob Reid takes you on a headlong journey through the outer reaches of the universe--and the inner workings of our absurdly dysfunctional music industry.
Title:Year Zero
Authors:Rob Reid
Info:Del Rey, Kindle Edition, 357 pages
Collections:Your library

Work Information

Year Zero by Rob Reid

  1. 20
    The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy: A Trilogy in Four Parts by Douglas Adams (Anonymous user)
  2. 10
    Ready Player One by Ernest Cline (Mint.ChocolateOcelot)
    Mint.ChocolateOcelot: A very similar tongue-in-cheek celebration of video games and gamers, rather than the music industry and fan culture.
  3. 10
    The Martian by Andy Weir (TomWaitsTables)
  4. 00
    Life, the Universe and Everything by Douglas Adams (Aula)
    Aula: Nick Carter (not the Backstreet Boy) is a copyright lawyer who's visited by aliens who claim that the earth is in danger of being destroyed due to the universal (literally) popularity of its music. Similar humor to Adams' novels, well-plotted, and well-written.
  5. 00
    Agent to the Stars by John Scalzi (TomWaitsTables)

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» See also 21 mentions

English (56)  Italian (1)  All languages (57)
Showing 1-5 of 56 (next | show all)
Maybe I picked up this book at the wrong time. Maybe the comparison to Hitchhiker's set the bar too high. Whatever the reason, I didn't find the first few chapters entertaining enough to keep reading. ( )
  talon2claw | Dec 31, 2022 |
not as funny as it could have been ( )
  GridCube | Jan 17, 2022 |
Douglas Adams is inimitable. His imagination fires off in all directions, with you never sure just what he’s going to say next. Reid doesn’t imitate Adams but channels his genius in ways I didn’t think was possible. Year Zero is a fantastically ridiculous story that doesn’t stray too far from Adams’ style.

If your interests cross over between music (piracy), computers, and aliens, then this is best story for you. We start off slow and easy and eventually build into a crescendo of fantastic images that are laugh-out-loud funny.

The idea of the “Refined” league is preposterously awesome. Reid builds an incredible universe of aliens that are so in love with human music that they’ll hold lip-sync concerts, make faux reality shows, and carry around the entire library of human music. Oh, and when they listen to our music, they go into so much ecstasy that it literally kills them.

But that’s not all. The aliens are as strange as they can be. Between 2D entities, insect-like creatures, cute teddy bears with sharp weapons, and humanoid sluts, you’ll never see what’s coming. Reid channels his inner Adams in hilarious ways that even Adams would have appreciated.

Most notable is the fact that the most powerful organization in the universe – the Guardians – are impotent. In contrast, the actual most powerful organization in the universe is the Union, which is a government workers union.

What the book does best is music. From the peppiest pop to the heaviest metal that can be, this book covers them all. You won’t be disappointed at all by the music references, though many of them are from the ‘70s and will be lost on younger audiences.

I also loved the geekiness it exudes. It’s filled with jabs at computers, especially the whole Windows vs. Mac debate. And there’s a wonderful reference to why a particular operating system is such a pain in the ass. I didn’t see that coming.

The biggest star of all, however, is the human characters. While they aren’t exactly developed in detail, the characters still feel real and work well within the story. Without spoiling too much, I loved how the lawyers were represented as ruthless, inhuman machines with a soft corner for legalese, money, and rappers.

I haven’t had as much fun with a book in a long, long time. If you’re looking for something geeky and fun, then go pick this up right now. Just don’t pirate any music while you’re doing so! ( )
  bdgamer | Sep 10, 2021 |
John Hodgman's narration really made the audiobook version of this great. Not sure I would have enjoyed quite so much on the page. ( )
  jlweiss | Apr 23, 2021 |
Fun, silly read which somehow makes copyright laws hilarious. ( )
  illmunkeys | Apr 22, 2021 |
Showing 1-5 of 56 (next | show all)
..a lot like if Carl Hiaasen wrote American Psycho, but about the music copyright business instead of a bloodthirsty psychopath—if there is any difference. At least one dust jacket review wants to draw comparisons with Douglas Adams. But this isn't the dry British humor of Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, it's the full-bore American smartass variety (though it does tend to meander like an Adams book).
added by WeeklyAlibi | editWeekly Alibi, John Bear (Aug 9, 2012)
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Aliens suck at music.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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In the hilarious tradition of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Rob Reid takes you on a headlong journey through the outer reaches of the universe--and the inner workings of our absurdly dysfunctional music industry.

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Average: (3.53)
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