So today I am positively ecstatic to write about one of my favorite series in YA: Hugo and Locus award-winning author Naomi Kritzer’s much-lauded and much-loved CATNET SERIES!
And that’s not all—we’re also holding a sweepstakes where you can enter for a chance to win both books.
So read on and sign up to see if the Internet loves you as much as I love this series about found family and tomorrow’s technological perils!
The series begins with CATFISHING ON CATNET, the techno-thriller that swept both the Lodestar and Edgar Awards. It’s a story about a girl Steph, who’s mother constantly moves her from place to place because she is frightened of Steph’s distant, abusive, and possibly pursuant father. It is also a story about CheshireCat, a sentient artificial intelligence masquerading as the human moderator of an online social community called CatNet. We all know the Internet loves cats, but in CATFISHING ON CATNET, we see that the adoration for felines is more than abstract, as the only thing CheshireCat loves more than looking at pictures of cats is trying to help their human friends. When Steph’s dad eventually proves to be even more cunning and dangerous than even her vigilant mother let on, it’s up to Steph’s IRL (and URL) friends to band together and stop him.
The thriller plot is fast-paced and full of basically all the coolest things—including a car chase, AI espionage, and even an army of small robots and appliances. But what I love most about CATFISHING ON CATNET are the themes of found family and identity exploration. In this book, we learn how CatNet users try out new pronouns within their trusted circles before making the social jump into the offline world. We see how Steph, who struggles with the isolation of remaining perpetually on the run, finds consistent companionship and support within the circle of her trusted CatNet friends. It’s lovely.
And that brings us to CHAOS ON CATNET, the sequel that hits the ground running and doesn’t stop. At the close of the first book, CheshireCat receives an ominous missive from an unknown entity—another AI: “Hello, CheshireCat. I know who and what you are. Do you know me?” In CHAOS ON CATNET, it is AI vs. AI in a race to prevent the meltdown of society. The CatNet series illustrates the good and bad of the online life that has become so intertwined with our offline world. The rogue AI that uses social media to instigate waves of paranoia and violence across the population is a sharp reminder that the same network that provides us with easy connection with otherwise-located friends can also drive us apart. Or turn us against each other.
In the end, I can’t recommend these fantastic and speculative YA techno-thrillers enough. I just know you’ll fall in love with them the way I have.
Praise for CATFISHING ON CATNET:
“This book is perfect.”
— New York Times Book Review
“An absolutely charming and incredibly gripping, superbly plotted YA thriller.”
— Cory Doctorow, New York Times bestselling author of LITTLE BROTHER
“Wickedly funny and thrilling in turns; perfect for readers coming-of-age online.”
— Kirkus Reviews, starred review
Perfect for fans of Martha Wells and Cory Doctorow, the CATNET SERIES by Naomi Kritzer is available now.
And don’t forget to enter the sweepstakes!