As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases.

Review: The Sky is Blue – Simon Hosking

The Sky is Blue - Simon Hosking

Genre: Sci-Fi

LGBTQ+ Category: Lesbian

Reviewer: Lucy

Get It On Amazon

About The Book

Science has freed people from the need to sleep, giving Steven plenty of time to indulge in Pachinko – a VR world of endless games and limitless possibilities.

When his Pachinko suddenly glitches Steven’s world comes crashing down.

He finds himself on the run from authorities and fighting against an AI that controls much of the world, even his own mind. Teaming up with an unlikely ally teaches him to fight in VR, to sleep again and – much to his surprise – to be a woman.

As the fight spills into reality and back, Steven learns nothing is as it seems. The struggle demands enormous sacrifices. Everyone and everything is on the line in pursuit of a victory that may be impossible.

The Sky is Blue is the first installment of a trilogy outlining a futuristic, queer, cautionary tale of the power of unchecked technology.

The Review

When I was finished with the The Sky is Blue by Simon Hosking, I couldn’t decide if I liked it. But what I knew was, I’d been thinking about it. My mind was fixated on which parts of it could be real, and are, in some senses, already real. And to me, that’s a sign of a great novel. This cyberpunk tale takes us to a future in which folks don’t need to sleep which means they can spend the majority of their free time playing Pachenko. But the main character, Steven, finds himself an unwitting pawn of the corrupt tech corporation and possibly a reluctant hero of the masses who have been fooled and oppressed. And he ends up with a strange sidekick in Amanda, who becomes his guide into a resistance movement he neither knew existed or was even necessary.

The Sky is Blue is set in a world where the large majority of the characters’ time is spent playing a fully immersive, virtual reality game. As a result, this is where a large majority of the conflict and action take place. Imagine if The Matrix had been set in the Super Mario universe. There were aspects of the virtual reality and video game playing that went a little over my non-gamer head, but that didn’t ruin the impact of the story telling. There were times when I was metaphorically on the edge of my seat, nervous and anxious for the outcome. More than one scene left me uncomfortable. Many passages had me laughing out loud, often at dark, gallows humor. 

Author Simon Hosking tells a mean, captivating story with a detailed, circuitous storyline and premise that could lead almost anywhere. And there were no subjects left untouched.

Throughout the story, the main theme was ‘unchecked technology’ but within that premise, the author asked, “What could that effect? Have you thought about the impact that could have on sexuality, gender identity, incomes, education, health, world peace?” And I found myself answering, ‘Well, I hadn’t.”

And that’s what kept me reading, even when I felt uncomfortable or anxious. Because the storytelling was excellent and thought-provoking, and the questions were important. It’s also why I will put my little grabby hands out when the next installment is available. I need to see where Steven and Amanda end up, and what impact they have on their world. 

The Reviewer

I’m an avid reader who loves pretty much all genres except math textbooks. As a kid, my parents exposed me to everything from fairies, hobbits, and dragons to the biographies of interesting people around the world, interspersed with poetry, plays, and music. Into adulthood, I spent a lot of years with my nose buried in various textbooks. Now, I read whatever grabs my fancy.   

Join Our Newsletter List, Get 4 Free Books

File Type Preferred *
Privacy *
Queer Sci Fi Newsletter Consent *
Please consider also subscribing to the newsletters of the authors who are providing these free eBooks to you.
Author Newsletter Consent *
Check your inbox to confirm your addition to the list(s)