by Estevan Vega
Netflix. Wi-fi. Blu-ray. These few tags are just a glimpse of the entertainment world. Isn’t it funny how much our culture idolizes entertainment? From music to movies. From live shows to quiet moments cuddling with our favorite novel. From theme parks to mega-churches selling salvation on a golden spoon. If your eyes are moving, there is usually something to be looked at, something to be watched. It’s an amazing phenomenon, really. I can’t remember the last time I drove in my car without listening to music. When I’m home, I’m on the computer killing time with blogs or Facebook, I mean, achem…writing. Seriously, I do write. And then before bed, I usually throw on a movie.
How much time and money do we spend on entertainment? Answer: a freakin’ lot.
Now, I am not the big brother suggesting we cut the ties with our favorite bands, divorce our favorite shows, or disown our beloved books. From one devourer of entertainment to another, I’m simply wondering if we should pause and reflect on what it is we’re constantly pumping into our brains. Does it affect who we are? Does it have an impact on our souls? Will it influence our current or future relationships? I feel that the more we have at our fingertips and the more that we are connected, the more convenient it is to lose pieces of ourselves and essentially become addicted to these devices. We begin to become someone, something else.
Ever see the movie Gamer? It’s this action flick with Gerard Butler and that dude from Dexter. Oh, and the Percy Jackson kid. Ludakris makes an appearance for a few minutes too. Well, basically, it’s about this futuristic society where a video game is created called Society. In this “fake universe,” people take on the personas and literal bodies (males can play females, and other freaky stuff) of other people. These “characters” people take over during game-play a la Sims style, are paid to perform whatever the gamer desires. On a major scale, though, the film revolves around this one guy (Butler), a death-row inmate, who must kill his way to freedom in a gaming world where he, with the help of his gamer, shoot their way to victory a la Halo style. Several acts of indecency and tons of blood and gore later, we’re left with this quasi-message about where the future is headed and how easily it is for our current society—an ever entertain me!, gratify me!, and pleasure me at all costs! world—to get there.
If you’re wondering if I liked the movie or not, I did. I like movies that are satirical or what I call prophetic. Of course, movies are the most readily available and most sought-after medium (in addition to awesome books). For the last century, and probably farther back, however, science fiction novels predicted much of what we see concerning modern technology. Also, some of the horrors glimpsed at in certain Bradbury novels and the like are beginning to come true.
Like I said, none of this is meant to frighten you or make you throw out your child’s video games or your boyfriend’s action flick collection. Similarly, ladies, this doesn’t mean you have to part with your favorite novels or artists. This is just one writer speaking honestly and freely, while freedom of speech is still a possibility, for the most part. Will we ever reach a breaking point, I wonder? Will we become like the society in Gamer? Will we bow to Big Brother as in 1984? Will we force our children to burn books as in Fahrenheit 451? I don’t know. Obviously, it is my hope that neither fear nor ignorance nor blindness nor apathy will control us. I’m just one writer. You’re just one reader. But it is rather interesting, huh?
Now go spend an afternoon with your son. Go chill with your sister. Call your pops and tell him you love him. Make nice with your cousins. Then when you’re done, go buy ARSON, and get ready for ASHES, part 2 in the Arson series. Time is short, so spread the fire while you can.
Publisher: StoneGate Ink
Publication Date: May 2011
Arson Gable feels like a freak. He can create fire. He never asked for it. He never wanted it. But he can't shut it off.
Before now, three things were true: he both loved and despised his grandmother; his life was going nowhere; and he was alone. But when a strange girl--who feels more normal behind a mask than inside her own skin--moves in next door, Arson hopes to find something he's never had: purpose. Using what he fears most about himself, Arson must face his consuming past and confront the nightmare that is his present as he walks the fine line between boy and monster. Dark, moody, and breathtakingly relevant, Arson, the chilling chronicle of an isolated boy with unimaginable ability, is sure to ignite the hearts and minds of a new generation.
Estevan Vega published his first book when he was fifteen, and his second followed shortly after. His fascination for the supernatural ignited a desire to write his third and most praised work to date, Arson. For those just joining, Ashes continues the turbulent story. Vega currently resides in Connecticut, where he is feverishly plotting the next chapter in the series. Get stoked.
Connect With Estevan:
Partners in Crime Tours
August 1-Review@The Musings Of A Book Addict
August 3-Guest Post@Tributes Books Reviews
August 4-Guest Post@The Top Shelf
August 5-Review@Gelati's Scoop
August 8-Interview@Beyond The Books
August 9-Guest Post@The Calico Critic
August 10-Review@The Top Shelf
August 11-Guest Post@Stuff & Nonsense
August 12-Review&Guest Post@The Bookshelf
August 15-Review@Oodles Of Books
August 16-Guest Post@The Book Faery Reviews
August 16-Review@A Good Day To Read
August 17-Guest Post@Terri Forehand
August 18-Review@Coffee and a Keyboard
August 19-Spotlight@Suspense By Anne
August 23-Review@Hypnotically Entranced
August 24-Interview@Book Marketing Buzz
August 24th-Review@ Lady Lit Reviews
August 25-Interview@The Children's & Teens' Book Connection
August 26-Interview@Coffee and a Keyboard
August 30-Review@Romancing The Book(Valerie)
August 31-Review&Interview@Darlene's Book Nook