What if you could live multiple lives simultaneously, have constant, perfect companionship, and never die? That’s the promise of Join, a revolutionary technology that allows small groups of minds to unite, forming a single consciousness that experiences the world through multiple bodies. But as two best friends discover, the light of that miracle may be blinding the world to its horrors.
Chance and Leap are jolted out of their professional routines by a terrifying stranger—a remorseless killer who freely manipulates the networks that regulate life in the post-Join world. Their quest for answers—and survival—brings them from the networks and spire communities they’ve known to the scarred heart of an environmentally ravaged North American continent and an underground community of the “ferals” left behind by the rush of technology.
In the storytelling tradition of classic speculative fiction from writers like David Mitchell and Philip K. Dick, Join offers a pulse-pounding story that poses the largest possible questions: How long can human life be sustained on our planet in the face of environmental catastrophe? What does it mean to be human, and what happens when humanity takes the next step in its evolution? If the individual mind becomes obsolete, what have we lost and gained, and what is still worth fighting for?
Read an excerpt from Part I on the Soho Press website.
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What People Are Saying About Join
“Join is a searing, ballistic plunge into the mysteries of identity and mortality. Its ingenious core is revealed and amplified by high voltage suspense and murder. Delicious.”
— Katherine Dunn, author of Geek Love
“Join is that rare thing, an appealing novel that’s both literary and commercial. Set in a dystopian world full of dazzle and invention, Join is a subtle exploration of what the self is and what death means. As we read about individuals joining into a unified consciousness, we have to wonder what our aspirations and fears truly are and what can be called us.”
— David Vann, author of Aquarium
“Challenging, surprising, shocking, and enlightening. Steve Toutonghi’s Join stands alongside Ancillary Justice as a novel that forces us to ask impossible questions about identity and immortality. An exciting addition to 21st century science fiction.”
— Robert Repino, author of Mort(e)
“Join is a deeply-relevant, humane work of speculative fiction. It takes a concept that’s ripped from today’s news headlines — the technology-enabled linkage of biological neural networks — and turns it into a great story. It’s a compelling book. Don’t miss it!”
— Peyton Marshall, author of Goodhouse
“From the first page, Toutonghi launches us into a strange and fascinating new world, exploring ideas with nuance and verve. Strikingly original and deeply imaginative.”
— Charles Yu, author of How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe
“Join is a conceptual powerhouse, tapping into the core of our contemporary debates about technology.”
“Like … Ursula K. Le Guin, [Toutonghi] combines smart, imaginative extrapolation about technology and a deep curiosity about civilization and the human condition.”
“Compelling, [presents] two radically differing visions of humanity’s future… intriguing and thought-provoking.”
— Publishers Weekly
“First novelist Toutonghi builds a complicated and technology-heavy realm with ethical components relevant in today’s society… Enthusiasts of futuristic technology and sf writers such as Philip K. Dick will find this ambitious work thought provoking.”
— Library Journal
“A heady sci-fi thriller about a world-altering technology—and its hidden costs… There’s a lot going on here, including a fascinating technology with far-reaching implications, and a lot of big philosophical questions about the nature of identity.”
— Kirkus Reviews
“[A] thought-provoking debut… The dizzying complexity of [the Joins’] interactions are philosophical as well as dangerous and may determine the future of civilization and earth itself. Fans of literary speculative fiction will enjoy pondering the challenging issues and ideas posed by this assortment of perspectives.”
“Join is a high-concept, immersive science fiction thriller… a compelling cautionary tale that explores ethics and selfhood.”
— Shelf Awareness
“It’s the rarest of SF novels: a gripping concept delivered with compelling page-turning intensity.”
— The Seattle Review of Books