I have been provided with an advance copy of the new Watch Dogs novel Stars & Stripes by Sean Grigsby and Stewart Hotston, published by Aconyte Books, so here is the honest review I promised in exchange for the book.
So here is an important disclaimer which is always important to put out there first. I have a casual work contact with Asmodee to demonstrate board games for them in stores and at conventions. Asmodee being the parent company of Aconyte the publisher.
I am going to try my best to not let that cloud my judgement in this review, but I accept that subconsciously it might.
What is Watch Dogs
Watch Dogs is an action-adventure game franchise, published by Ubisoft, and there have been three games published since 2014, the most recent being Watch Dogs Legion, published in late 2020.
Watch Dogs feature protagonists who are hackers working against criminal underworlds, corrupt companies and rival hackers.
Stars & Strips follows the protagonist of the original game and is set between the events of that game and Watch Dogs Legion.
Whilst completing a job in Baltimore, Adrian Pierce is forcibly recruited by a shadowy government agent to investigate the hijacking of a transport full of transhuman augmentations!
Forced to work with Jordi Chin, he quickly finds himself in the middle of a conspiracy, that reaches all the way to the White House, as the mysterious Stripes, a white supremacist group look to seize power and enforce their racist xenophobic and backwards agenda on the country.
Well, what can I say the book has lots of character, and the character development of Pierce, is way more than was in the original game!
The book has a very uncomfortable plot as it is basically very much an examination of the culture wars and racism that has seized US politics, as the villains are a group that’s very familiar, they are “patriots” with more in common with groups like the Proud Boys, KKK, Britain First, and the Oath Keepers.
So yeah lots of examination of racism and hatred as a form of patriotism, and I am not gonna lie, it was delightful to see them get what they deserved.
This is a great book, its pacing was just right, I mean its one of the best paced books I have read in a long time, and I really couldn’t put it down and read it very quickly!
I am gonna have to give this wild of a book, an easy 5 out of 5 stars!
Stars & Stripes is available now as a paperback, eBook and audiobook!