The Affinities

Tor. 2015. 320p. ISBN 9780765332622. $25.99; ebk. ISBN 9781466800779. SF
In the near future, a sociologist invents an algorithm that can be used to find people who will get along with each other, collaborate well together—share an affinity, in other words. Adam Fisk signs up to get tested for an affinity and his life changes permanently when he is placed in the Tau group. What begins as a social media service develops into cultlike cliques are resented by those left out. Adam and his new friends will do anything to protect Tau from those who seek to dismantle the affinities and from a rival relation who seeks to consolidate power in their own hands.
VERDICT An exciting conceptual premise of social media run amok is given a shallow treatment here. Wilson (author of the sf series that began with the Hugo Award-winning Spin) forms his groups and sets them at odds without giving any compelling reason other than the plot-needed conflict.
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