Homo Deus A Brief History of Tomorrow by Yuval Noah Harari

“When everybody uses the same oracle, and everybody believes the oracle, the oracle turns into a sovereign. So Waze must think for us. Maybe it will inform only half the drivers that route No. 2 is open, while keeping this information secret from the other half. Thereby pressure will ease on route No. 1 without blocking route No. 2.”

I wasn’t expecting this! It isn’t what I’m used to reading, nor what I tend to select for reading in my leisure time.

Sadly, it wasn’t something I wanted to read in all honesty. Unfortunately, I only superficially read the description of the content and so assumed that this was a fictional work. As a result I have found it, in the main, to be somewhat of a chore to read.

However, that said there were parts that I found engaging and interesting enough to read in a focused manner.
The bits I read most intently were the bits about the disappearance of death, the origin of lawns and the rise of the data-flow and one or two other areas.

Ultimately the book discusses the ‘usefulness’ of humans in society, and the likelihood of humans (homo sapiens) becoming ‘devoid of … value’ in society, as we move into a more technological age. An age where robots and AI take on many roles currently undertaken by trained and experienced individuals.

The author reviews changes in societal structure through history, bringing forth examples from many different times, from different cultures, to expand his point and give weight to his arguments. It is not a poorly written book by any means, it is just not the material for me.

I’m trying to think who this book would be best suited to and really, because it is so far from my usual reading material of choice, I am struggling to think of someone that I know who may want to read this book.

I received an e-ARC of this novel through NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review. NetGalley does not allow for paid reviews.

2/5 Stars (What this means…five-stars-applied-carefully)

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Official description:
War is obsolete
You are more likely to commit suicide than be killed in conflict

Famine is disappearing
You are at more risk of obesity than starvation

Death is just a technical problem
Equality is out – but immortality is in

What does our future hold?

Yuval Noah Harari, author of the critically-acclaimed New York Times bestseller and international phenomenon Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind, returns with an equally original, compelling, and provocative book, turning his focus toward humanity’s future, and our quest to upgrade humans into gods.
Over the past century humankind has managed to do the impossible and rein in famine, plague, and war. This may seem hard to accept, but, as Harari explains in his trademark style—thorough, yet riveting—famine, plague and war have been transformed from incomprehensible and uncontrollable forces of nature into manageable challenges. For the first time ever, more people die from eating too much than from eating too little; more people die from old age than from infectious diseases; and more people commit suicide than are killed by soldiers, terrorists and criminals put together. The average American is a thousand times more likely to die from binging at McDonalds than from being blown up by Al Qaeda.
What then will replace famine, plague, and war at the top of the human agenda? As the self-made gods of planet earth, what destinies will we set ourselves, and which quests will we undertake? Homo Deus explores the projects, dreams and nightmares that will shape the twenty-first century—from overcoming death to creating artificial life. It asks the fundamental questions: Where do we go from here? And how will we protect this fragile world from our own destructive powers? This is the next stage of evolution. This is Homo Deus.
With the same insight and clarity that made Sapiens an international hit and a New York Times bestseller, Harari maps out our future.

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