Publisher: Freedom Voices
Released: January 15, 2015
Glance around. Imagine that all the scenery beyond these words isn’t real, nor are they. Instead, imagine that you’re actually locked up in a jail cell, and the “reality” around you is nothing but a digitally created illusion generated by a microchip implanted in your brain. Would you rather continue dwelling in the comfortable world you’ve always known, even if it’s not real, or would you prefer to pursue the mysterious truth about the terrible thing that has happened to you?
This provocative premise lies at the heart of American Day Dream, a gripping techno-dystopian thriller by San Francisco author Margot Pepper. Set in the late decades of the 21st century, the book follows Ian, a successful graphic designer working for a big San Francisco biotech firm, on a neo-Orwellian quest to uncover the shocking truth behind his incarceration. After waking up one morning in a prison cell, delirious, confused, and being held without cause or explanation, Ian soon learns that he has somehow become a slave to his company, spending his nights in a jail cell on the 84th floor of his corporate office building, while being forced to go to work each day and act as if nothing has happened. Set against the backdrop of San Francisco’s iconic landmarks, it is an entertaining futuristic love story that provides a critical and deeply reflective look at life in the information age.
As with any visionary fiction, American Day Dream paints a world that is only a slightly exaggerated version of our own—a world of people addicted to gadgets, mesmerized by the media, hooked on pharmaceuticals, and made to think that they have more control over their lives than they actually do. Pepper explores the suppressed psychological and economic truths of our times through an engaging revolutionary love story that highlights the Bay Area’s cultural and scenic jewels. The tale delves into the darkness of our day, restoring light to an otherwise bleak landscape, and inspiring us to contemplate the direction we’re heading in while there’s still time to change it.