BOOK REVIEW: Omega Point by Guy Haley

 The concept of the Omega Point has been covered often in Science Fiction.  Some of my favourites that came to mind when I started this latest to come to my hand Omega Point by Guy Hayley; were Isaac Asimov’s The Last Question, Arthur C Clarke’s Childhood’s End, Poul Anderson’s Harvest of Stars and Star Maker by Olaf Stapledon, although the last was written before Pierre Teilhard de Chardin coined the term in his theory which he then wrote about in The Theory of Man.

OMEGA POINT
A Richards & Klein Investigation

Guy Haley
Science Fiction
Cover art: Neil Roberts

The second Richards & Klein Investigation. The powerful artificial intelligence designated k52 has a plan to take over the world.
If it were to create an artificial reality based on our own universe it could theoretically gain enough data to be able to alter reality itself, turning k52 into the ultimate arbiter of mankind’s fate. It’s down to Richards and Klein to stop k52 – even though the alternative could be worse!

I now get to add another favourite to my list.  Guy Hayley approaches the creation of an Omega Point in a logical progression from today’s technology to that of the near future, when Artificial intelligence (AI) not only is achieved and used in educational, and some not so, toys; but gains sentient status and are granted the same rights as humans.  Humans and AI have developed an interactive internet, where people and AI find themselves in reality realms, game playing worlds where the players feel and experience the action as if it were real.  Humans have to jack into the system, and if they lose connection they end up in the real world, but AI can transfer their consciousness from their base to these worlds.

Private Investigators Otto Klein, also a cyborg, and his AI partner Richards are contacted by the powers that be, to enter the Reality Realms, where rogue AI k52 has suborned the system in an attempt to create an Omega Point. When Richards finds himself trapped in the system, experiencing all the pains and pleasures of having a ‘real’ flesh body, Klein learns he needs to find Wally, a hacker who has created the only usable backdoor into the system since k52 sealed the system. Kein has one of his old cyborg comrades in arms gunning for him through the wilds of Siberia, and Richards learns that in this realm he can not only die, but the realm around him is under attack from unknown forces.  Both have what seems to be impossible tasks to perform, but if they both cannot achieve their missions, the world government plans to nuke the system.  But is this playing into k52’s hand?  Or is there another player in charge.

I enjoyed this book and found it engaging, internally consistent and well written.  And to read a free excerpt download here

GS Rating: 5/5

eBook
27 March 2012
£4.49
ePub ISBN 9780857661500

UK/RoW
5 Apr 2012
416pp B-format paperback
£7.99
ISBN 9780857661487

Source: Angry Robot
GS Reporter: Montoya, Whatotherway

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