5 out of 5 stars

This isn’t the first glowing review of a Rhett C. Bruno book that I’ve written, he has a way of captivating me in every story he tells. Vicarious was no different. From the first few minutes of it I was intrigued. I needed to know more and know who these characters where and what made them tick.

The description calls it The Truman Show meets Ready Player One, and I definitely see that, but I would throw in a bit of The Island as well. A lot of the pretense around their lives reminded me a lot of what the characters in The Island were going through. Especially because the characters in Vicarious were meant to be almost perfect human specimens because of the specific breeding and procreation they were doing.

One of the hardest things to do about a book that has twists and turns like this one does is write a review and talk about it. I can’t really mention anything about the book because it will likely give away a twist or a turn that someone didn’t see coming. I think The Truman show is definitely the “best” comparison, but in the future and in a really unique setting.

Normally, I can take or leave a Wil Wheaton narration. I’ve never hated them, but I haven’t loved them either. I loved him in this. I thought he was perfect for Asher even to the point where I could sort of see Wil playing him in a movie/tv version of this. And the same goes for Katherine McNamara, I thought she absolutely nailed becoming Mission. There were a few times where I had to remind myself that this was a book and not a retelling of their life story. The narration was that good.

Overall, I really really enjoyed Vicarious. I think that Bruno knocked this one out of the park and this might be his most ambitious book along with being the best one I’ve read so far.

Book Description:


Award-winning performers Wil Wheaton (Star Trek: The Next GenerationThe Big Bang Theory, and Ready Player One audiobook) and Katherine McNamara (ShadowhuntersThe Stand, CW’s Arrow) bring this mind-bending, deeply imagined sci-fi tale to life.

The real world is only where you breathe….

In High Earth, digital entertainment is everything. Shows. Virtual worlds. Simulations – there’s something for everybody in a city where working for a living has been rendered obsolete by technological advancements. Even a short walk outside to visit with others is no longer necessary. Just load into the network and you can be with anyone, anywhere.

For Asher Reinhart, nothing compares to Ignis; a live reality show that pushes human beings to their very extremes. As a volunteer director, Asher closely monitors the lives of those living on an interstellar ark, believing they’re the last of humanity.

But when it’s determined that the life of the show’s brightest star, Mission, must be put in danger to boost declining ratings, Asher is forced to choose: the show he loves or the woman whose existence has been the focus of his attention since the day he was born.

From number-one Audible best-selling author and Nebula Award nominee Rhett C. Bruno comes a story about the power of human connection. The Truman Show meets Ready Player One in a novel perfect for fans of Hugh Howey, Kim Stanley Robinson, and Michael Crichton.

Vicarious by Rhett C. Bruno
Narrator: Katherine McNamara, Wil Wheaton
Length: 13 hrs and 5 mins
Published by Podium Audio on April 13th 2021
Genres: Science Fiction, Technothriller
Format: Audiobook
Buy from Audible
Also by this author: Titanborn, The Collector, The Luna Missile Crisis, Baron Steele


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