One Sunday morning after a long night of partying, Henrik “HP” Pettersson, a slacker with a lot of ego and very little impulse control, finds a cell phone of an unfamiliar make on a commuter train. Through insisting and slightly uncanny messages that refer to him by name, the phone invites him to play a game. HP accepts without hesitation.
The rules are that HP must complete tasks that range from childish pranks to criminal acts, as allocated by the mysterious Game Master. HP is the perfect contender; alienated from society, devoid of morals, and desperate for fame. His completion of the assignments are filmed and uploaded onto a protected server where viewers rate the Players performances.
The Game starts out innocently enough and then becomes increasingly risky, threatening the safety of someone close to HP. He is determined to become a superstar, but when the dark and tragic secrets of his family’s past are at stake, HP must make a choice. Will he suffer the humiliation of defeat, or will the need to win push him to the limit no matter the cost?
First in a fast-paced and riveting trilogy, Game will leave you guessing. Follow the rules, and everybody gets hurt . . .
Paperback, 400 pages
Published December 3rd 2013 by Atria/Emily Bestler Books
Henrik finds an abandoned phone on a train that begins to receive personally addressed messages for him. He is intrigued and decides to take the phone up on it’s offer, to play a game. The game begins with easy tasks, like to steal an umbrella, and real money can be won. But the games soon grow more dangerous and more money is offered. Henrik really has nothing better to do and finds the challenges a good way to pass the time and make money, along with the bonus high of getting away with illegal acts.
Henrik lets the game get to him; he loves the online attention he gets when his scores are posted. His ego takes hold and he thinks he can do no wrong. But then something does go wrong, and leaving the game is not as easy as starting it. Now he is going to need the help of others to leave and go up against more than just other gamers to win.
Rebecca is a more balanced and rounded character. The book is written from both her and Henrik’s perspectives and she fills in the gaps of the storyline we don’t see through Henrik’s fast-paced game sections, though we get as much excitement out of Rebecca’s story. Rebecca helps to coordinate security guards for personal protection and it’s not long before Rebecca and Henrik get involved in the same mess.
The Game is a tech-crime thriller. It has yin and yang characters in Henrik and Rebecca; one you will like getting to know and one that will make you want to slap them. The writing jumps from different perspectives, sometimes within the same chapters, and this keeps the story moving and adds excitement.
What I loved about The Game is the energy that came with reading it. It was action-packed and featured moments that made me gasp, giggle, and shake my head. It was an enjoyable read that I could lose myself in and I wanted to continue reading. It is the first book in the series.