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The Doubt Factory de Paolo Bacigalupi
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The Doubt Factory (edició 2014)

de Paolo Bacigalupi (Autor)

MembresRessenyesPopularitatValoració mitjanaMencions
2601877,307 (3.26)12
"When a radical band of teen activists [claims] that Alix's powerful father covers up wrongdoing by corporations that knowingly allow innocent victims to die in order to make enormous profits from unsafe products, she must decide if she will blow the whistle on his misdeeds"--
Membre:spuriouscarrie
Títol:The Doubt Factory
Autors:Paolo Bacigalupi (Autor)
Informació:Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (2014), 496 pages
Col·leccions:La teva biblioteca
Valoració:**
Etiquetes:fiction

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The Doubt Factory de Paolo Bacigalupi

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Es mostren 1-5 de 18 (següent | mostra-les totes)
A successful failure.

While well written with believable characters and an interesting setting, this is not a success. The failure comes in two different places in the relationship between the protagonists and the motivation of the antagonists. But having said that, it is a well drawn picture of the morality of information. Specifically, the responsibilities of people consuming information to suss out the facts behind the presentation. It goes to some pains to make sure that we understand that money is corrupting and that information-massage is evil. Maybe a bit too broadly painted, but given the point of the book, it is understandable. I wouldn't call it preachy which is a ever present danger in a YA title.

The relationship between the main protagonists is quite sketchy, bordering on creepy. It reminds me of the porn actresses who are convinced they are feminists because they are taking control of their sexuality. Color me skeptical. There are one or two places where the main character simply acts completely against her nature which makes it even more creepy. That's the exact word: creepy.

But the main failure of the book is precisely in its success of drawing very three dimensional antagonists. They are contradictory enough to cry out for resolution but are largely left a cipher. Why would a loving man do the heinous things that he does?

Everyone comes into this life in media res so it is natural to take the grownups around us- our parents, aunts and uncles as givens. But while this works if you leave them as simple obstacles whose voice is like the peanuts comic adults: wah,wah,wah, it falls flat if you give them enough life to cause us to question their motives. Why do they act that way? Why would they not attempt to change if they are causing such grief to their loved ones? I understand that in some ways that is the point of the book: breaking away. But there has to be a reason! We are left with a mystery. I hate mysteries that are not answered. ( )
  frfeni | Jan 31, 2021 |
I read The Wind Up Girl by this guy and really enjoyed it. He conjured up a coherent world with a history out of nothing so when I saw The Doubt Factory I grabbed it.

It is not the same animal at all and I guess it was silly of me to think it might be. But it was excellent none the less.

Set in the very much here and now it is a gripping story about how the world is presented to us by others and what they do to maintain that view especially in the light of unfavourable events. Like everything set in the here and now it is about money and bad people or how good people become bad because of money. Unfortunately there is a lot of that shit to write about now.

The characters start out a bit clunky but actually pull it all together as it goes on. The story is gripping and well told and flies along at a good clip. The writing is cinematic and the plot just gets thicker. Was it believable? Yes, only too believable.

The main characters are all young adults so I have come to take that as my marker. The age of the main character is the target audience(?) So was it a YA novel? Probably.

Could someone take this great book and make a terrible movie out of it. It is probably in production as we speak :-) ( )
  Ken-Me-Old-Mate | Sep 24, 2020 |

'The Doubt Factory' is a thriller with the soul of an uncompromising investigative journalist, leavened by youthful optimism and presented with the dash and flair of a Vegas magic show.

It tells the story of a diverse group of talented young people who take on the 'Product Defense' firm that has helped to obscure the actions of big companies whose sometimes lethal products have broken their lives.

The hook into the story is the trap that they set for Alex, the daughter Simon Banks, the man who founded and runs the Product Defense firm. She is young, bright, privileged and thinks her father makes his living helping big companies tell their side of the story.

I liked the imagery at the start of the book when the young man leading the group has Alex under observation as she attends her posh school and hangs out with her friends by the pool at her expensive house. He imagines her as fish swimming in a tank, unaware of the hammer that is about the shatter the glass it doesn't know defines its world.

A little later, after the hammer has fallen, Alex has her father's work explained to her. She's told that Simon Banks' clients call his firm 'The Doubt Factory'

'It's a good name, right? Because, really, that's what your dad produces. He doesn't make products, he makes doubt. If you want everyone to ignore those FDA studies that say you're killing people with your drug, you go to Simon Banks and buy a little doubt. You sprinkle it all over the issue. You spread it around. Pretty soon, the Doubt Factory has everyone so confused that you can go on selling whatever the hell it is for just a little longer."

If you're as old and cynical as I am, then there's nothing new here except the outrage that it keeps happening and the focus on the enablers and not just on the big companies they enable. If you're the young adult audience this book is aimed at then there's a lot here that may make you look again at how you think the world works.

I liked that the people doing the Product Defense work aren't painted as evil. They're nice people, who love their kids and go to Little League games and support charities. They're just doing their job. But their job gets people killed.

I also like the idea of a 'gold standard for the truth'. Documented facts on which decisions can be taken. In the six years since this novel was written, Doubt Factories have become mainstream. Divisive doubt has been weaponised. Truth has been turned into a unicorn only fantasists believe in. Science has been relegated to crazy-cult status and experts have been either silenced or marginalised in the name of a better narrative. 'The Doubt Factory' at least provides some hope that we might not need to accept this. That it can be challenged.

'The Doubt Factory' was the fourth piece of fiction I've read by Paolo Bacigalupi. 'The Windup Girl', 'The Water Knife' and 'Shooting The Apocalypse' are all vivid, hard-edged, uncompromising visions of the brutal realities of a near future in which climate change has started to bite. Knowing that 'The Doubt Factory' was targetted at the Young Adult reader, I was intrigued to see how his style would change.

Obviously, the brutal violence had to go. The bleak do-what-you-need-to-to-survive-but-don't-expect-anything-but-trouble tone of those apocalypse-in-slow-motion-progress books is also absent here. But then, 'The Doubt Factory' is set in the present day when, perhaps, there is still room to hope.

It turned out that the biggest difference in style was that this is a real page-turner thriller with at least three I-didn't-see-that-coming twists that propel the story forward.

What 'The Doubt Factory' has in common with Paolo Bacigalupi's previous books is that the story is founded on a well-researched understanding of how the powerful protect themselves at the expense of the rest of us and how that lets us continue to slide towards avoidable disaster.

I listened to the audiobook version of 'The Doubt Factory', narrated by Emma Galvin. Normally, I like Emma Galvin's style but I had difficulty settling into her narration at the start of the book. She reads in a very emphatic way that works well once the action of the story starts but which I found jarring in the first part of the book, which is more reflective.

Click on the SoundCloud link below and decide for yourself if the audiobook version is for you.


https://soundcloud.com/penguin-audio/the-doubt-factory-by-paolo-3

( )
  MikeFinnFiction | Sep 3, 2020 |
This was just not up to Bacigalupi's usual standards for YA.

The characters felt flat all the way through. It was more like Pilgrim's Progress for Radicals than a novel--you had your Status Quo, your Righteous Truth, your Innocent Orphan, and so on. They would speechify at each other, there would be a not-very-intersting action scene, and then they would speechify some more. Info-dumps all over the place.

This needed to be more fleshed out with a few more revisions, to turn the stereotypes into characters and come up with a more plausible sequence of events. ( )
  andrea_mcd | Mar 10, 2020 |
This YA novel starts rather interesting but as the story goes along it gets very heavy handed in the message that the author wants to reader to hear. Alix goes to an exclusive school that has been targeted by a political group with an agenda against the work her father does for large corporations. Turns out the group has been targeting Alix to get to her father and it works but just not immediately. Alix is kidnapped by the group and let go after they think she is on their side about the legal tricks her father’s company does to sow doubt in legal cases against large companies. At first she sides with her family but after doing some research she switches sides to their side. That she was able to switch over to them and helps them was a bit much for me. It was an ok book but I don’t think I would bother to recommend it to anyone.

Digital review copy provided by the publisher through NetGalley.
( )
  Glennis.LeBlanc | Jan 6, 2020 |
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DOUBT FACTORY PLAYBOOK

COUNSEL AGAINST A RUSH TO JUDGMENT.

ATTACK THE SCIENCE.

BUY CONTRARIAN SCIENTIFIC RESULTS.

PUBLICIZE BOUGHT SCIENCE.

EMPHASIZE QUESTIONS RATHER THAN ANSWERS.

TEACH THE CONTROVERSY.

ACCUSE OPPONENTS OF JUNK SCIENCE.

KEEP THE PUBLIC CONFUSED.

CONFUSION = DELAY = $$$$
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"When a radical band of teen activists [claims] that Alix's powerful father covers up wrongdoing by corporations that knowingly allow innocent victims to die in order to make enormous profits from unsafe products, she must decide if she will blow the whistle on his misdeeds"--

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