KID: A History of the Future by Sebastian de Souza
Published by: Offliner Press on March 18th, 2021
Genre: Young Adult // Action, Adventure, Dystopian
Disclosure: GIFTED – SPOILER FREE REVIEW
**I was gifted this book for an impartial review on my blog by the author/publisher. This in no way alters my review.**
London. The year 2078. Like all other major cities, London is a silent wasteland, abandoned and crumbling, populated only by the renegade ‘Offliner’ movement, the lawless ‘Seekers’ and other minorities that rejected The Upload in 2060. As a result, these rebels live off the grid and in abject poverty, taking shelter in makeshift shantytowns and hideouts. The Offliners have made the disused Piccadilly Circus Tube station their home: a fully self-sufficient, subterranean community of about 500 people, known as the ‘Cell’.
In 2060, following a series of deadly pandemics, devastating environmental disasters and a violent surge in cyber terrorism, the UN made it compulsory for every tax paying citizen in all of its 193 united nations to login to the Perspecta Universe: a virtual reality universe provided by the tech giant Gnosys Inc. So began a period of history known as The Upload. Totally safe, pollution free, environmentally friendly: what was an alternative reality at first has become the only reality. Now, in 2078, billions of people all around the world exist in dedicated Hab-Belts – massive dormitory complexes surrounding the major cities – unconscious of the world around them: living, working, loving, learning, inside the Perspecta Universe.
KID – A History of The Future follows Josh ‘Kid’ Jones, a young Offliner who discovers that an antiquated piece of technology called an ‘iPhone’, left to him by his father, seemingly allows him to communicate with the past through social media. He strikes up a friendship with Isabel Parry, a 16 year old in 2021, and the two begin communicating through time and space via Instagram. In doing so they are not only changing their own fate, but also the fate of the rest of the world.
When I was first offered the chance to read KID, I was intrigued by the blurring of genres, a seemingly easy transition between action and dystopian, swirled with mystery/thriller notes. I’m usually the kind of reader that reaches for something different after I’ve just finished a mystery novel (as I just have) but after seeing KID and all that it resembled, I couldn’t help but start turning pages.
Josh “Kid” Jones, our Main Character, lives in 2078, swiftly introducing us to a world that’s far off our own. Years before the story takes place, in 2060, tons of pandemics, disasters and other environmental catastrophes happen. It’s because of these events that the UN made it mandatory for all citizens in the nations to login to something called the Perspecta Universe. It’s a type of virtual reality by a tech company, that begins the start of The Upload, a time in history that remains cemented as game-changing and life-altering. What began as something that was an alternative reality is now the only one. Billions of people all exist there in a type of unconsciousness, living and working inside the Perspecta Universe.
But Kid, in 2078, is not like them. He’s an “Offliner”, a type of group that rebuffed The Upload all those years ago. He exists in London, which is a shell of the type of place it used to be, a sort of badlands of a city, crawling with Seekers and Offliners, rebels that live off the grid in makeshift homes and communities that they’ve built as a type of shelter. So when he discovers that his father has left him something from years ago, an iPhone, he’s intrigued by the technology, even further startled when he realises that it lets him communicate with someone from the past via social media. Enter Izzy, a sixteen year old living in 2021. They begin a friendship through the space in their times, not realising the implications of their newfound discovery. They’re not only changing their own destiny, but the rest of the world’s future, too.
Overall, KID came into my life as an underdog type of read, quickly turning into something trailblazing and innovative, not to mention page-turning. I was absorbed in Josh and Izzy’s timelines, words and story, becoming utterly fascinated by the story landscape that Sebastian created. It honestly felt as if I was reading something that made a movie inside my mind; colours and descriptors coming to life as I turned chapters. I can see this becoming a much-loved, fan-favourite for YA fans of dystopian action/adventures, just as much as it’s become one of mine. Huge five-stars for this stunning read, sure to be destined for the big screen.
About The Author
Sebastian de Souza is an actor, producer, screenwriter and musician. Sebastian can currently be seen on Channel 4, playing the leading role of Leo in the Hulu Original series The Great, opposite Elle Fanning and Nicholas Hoult, written by Oscar-nominated and BAFTA award-winning writer Tony MacNamara (The Favourite). Previous roles include Gareth in the BBC/Hulu adaptation of Sally Rooney’s best-selling novel Normal People directed by Oscar-nominated Lenny Abrahamson (Room); in Netflix’s Medici, playing the iconic painter Sandro Botticelli; Alfonso d’Aragona in Showtime’s Emmy award-winning The Borgias, opposite Jeremy Irons and Holliday Grainger; and in the multiple BAFTA award-winning Skins, as lead Matty Levan. Sebastian has also played the lead role of Rafa in Paramount Pictures’ Brit-Crime thriller Plastic, opposite Will Poulter and Alfie Allen, and can currently be seen on Netflix playing Edmund in Ophelia opposite Naomi Watts, Daisy Ridley and Clive Owen. As a writer, at the age of 20 Sebastian wrote the feature film Kids In Love, which he also starred in opposite Will Poulter and Cara Delevingne. The film was produced by Ealing Studios, the oldest and most prestigious studio in the UK. He wrote and directed the short ‘Evelyne’s World’, starring Evelyne Brochu at Korda Studios in Budapest. His debut YA novel KID: A History of the Future is published by Offliner Press in Spring 2021.
Have you read KID: A History Of The Future?
BTW! Indie bookseller West End Lane Books is running a special pre-order promotion, where readers can get a SIGNED & DEDICATED copy of Kid if purchased through their website.
Let me know in the comments or on twitter @LittleMemoirs!