Nightmarish villains with superhuman enhancements. An all-seeing social network that tracks your every move. Mysterious, smooth-talking power players who lurk behind the scenes. A young woman suddenly in charge of the most decadent city in the world–and her very smelly cat.
Zoey Ashe is like a fish so far out of water that it has achieved orbit. She finds herself struggling to establish rule over a sprawling empire while Tabula Ra$a’s rogue’s gallery of larger-than-life crime bosses and corrupt plutocrats smell weakness. Tensions brew across the city.
A steamer trunk-sized box arrives at Zoey’s door, and she and her bodyguard Wu are shocked to find that it contains a disemboweled corpse, and even more shocked when that corpse, controlled by an unknown party, rises from the box and goes on a rampage through the house. After being subdued, it speaks in an electronic voice, accusing Zoey of being its murderer. Soon, it makes the same claim to the public at large, along with the promise of a cash reward for proof that Zoey and the Suits are behind the crime.
Now Zoey is having doubts of her own: Is she 100% sure that someone on her team didn’t do this? She also doesn’t even have a complete list of what businesses she owns, or what exact laws her organization is still breaking. So what does she really know?
Title: Zoey Punches the Future in the Dick | Author: David Wong | Series: Zoey Ashe #2 | Publisher: Titan Books | Pub. Date: 13th October 2020 | Pages: 400 | ISBN: 9781789090741 | Genre: Science Fiction | Language: English | Starred Review: Yes | Source: Publisher
Zoey Punches the Future in the Dick Review
‘Zoey Punches the Future in the Dick’ is the funniest thing to happen in 2020. Yes, that’s a low bar, but you really should read it now.
Seriously. Just go buy it.
‘Zoey Punches the Future in the Dick’ is the sequel to David (‘John Does at the End’) Wong’s 2014 novel ‘Futuristic Violence and Fancy Suits’. That first book is a lot of fun, but somehow didn’t quite hit the mark for me. As funny as it was, it failed to hang together as a story. The good news is that the new Zoey Ashe book is more polished and is enjoyable as a sci fi thriller, as well as being very funny indeed. Wong also does a great job of filling new readers in on the events of the first book, so you can skip that one completely if you want to.
Both books are set in Tabula Ra$a, a futuristic, hedonistic, chaotic city that’s like Las Vegas on acid and steroids.Heroine Zoey Ashe is a 23 year old everywoman with fat thighs, a disobedient cat and an extreme case of clumsiness. She’s also the head of a massive criminal organisation, with a crack team of body guards and weapons experts at her disposal (minor spoilers for the first book there, sorry).
The book starts with Zoey getting called to a hostage situation where a cybernetically-enhanced, super-powered incel is throwing vehicles about and threatening to kill dozens of bystanders. Things get crazier after that. And then keep on getting crazier (and funnier) until the end. The blend of humour, inventive sci fi, and plot is pitch perfect throughout. Wong keeps the story interesting and never lets the jokes (of which there are many) get in the way of the thrills. The world of Tabula Ra$a is packed with ridiculously futuristic vehicles, weapons and tech and the story is filled with twists and cliffhangers.
Most impressively, despite the supreme silliness of the book, Wong manages to craft it into a razor sharp satire of modern society. The future he depicts doesn’t necessarily feel like one that could ever happen, but a lot of it is familiar. Its army of disaffected young men trolling women online, its mega corporations that own and control everything, its citizens who willingly broadcast their lives online and surveil each other. Wong dissects many aspects of our daily lives with skill and intelligence, even while h’s making jokes about flatulence and cannibalism.
Even if you’re not a sci fi fan there’s a great deal to enjoy here. Zoey is a massively engaging lead, its full of inventive ideas and the fast-moving plot is a brainstormer. Also, like I said at the start, it’s funny as fuck. You should read it now.
You can find this book at many retailers via clicking on the appropriate link on Goodreads (Buying direct from retailers is a good way to support indie authors); however, in the spirit of supporting literacy programs, we would like to point out that you may be able to purchase this book through BetterWorldBooks.