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June 21, 1998 San Francisco, California The world is not what it seems. Michael Bishop is an Asset of the Facility- a job that comes with many strange perks. He is a man who never gets ill, who never pays taxes. He is effortlessly fit, and has a different woman every night of the week. That is, when he is not on assignment. When activated, Michael becomes Asset 108, a June 21, 1998 San Francisco, California The world is not what it seems. Michael Bishop is an Asset of the Facility- a job that comes with many strange perks. He is a man who never gets ill, who never pays taxes. He is effortlessly fit, and has a different woman every night of the week. That is, when he is not on assignment. When activated, Michael becomes Asset 108, a cyber-enhanced human who stands against the strange darkness that lurks at the edge of our world. Armed with equipment that most would find impossible to comprehend, he is sent on missions both strange and deadly. Each dossier pits him against irrational creatures and beings- most with the power to unravel his sanity, or reality itself. It's never a simple job. This job, however, is more complex than most. Mysterious unknown targets are fracturing reality, somewhere in the middle of the Mojave Desert. The Facility has no other Assets in the area, and their telemetry is spotty at best. Without knowing what to expect, Bishop is activated, assigned to a cadre, and sent to the middle of nowhere. What he finds there is both the beginning and the end. This story is the first listing in a series called "The Dossiers of Asset 108." This series is itself the first strand in The Paean of Sundered Dreams, a multi-genre, universe-spanning array of tales with Lovecraftian themes. These stories may be enjoyed as individual series, or as part of the Paean in its proper order. If you are a reader who is interested in The order that all these stories would be read in, at once, that order is as follows: Rationality Zero The Herald of Autumn Collateral Damage Handmaiden's Fury On the Matter of the Red Hand The Primary Protocol Regarding Oaths and the Whispering Flame Slave of the Sky-Captain The Wormwood Event Coming in 2015! "Aberrant Vectors."


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June 21, 1998 San Francisco, California The world is not what it seems. Michael Bishop is an Asset of the Facility- a job that comes with many strange perks. He is a man who never gets ill, who never pays taxes. He is effortlessly fit, and has a different woman every night of the week. That is, when he is not on assignment. When activated, Michael becomes Asset 108, a June 21, 1998 San Francisco, California The world is not what it seems. Michael Bishop is an Asset of the Facility- a job that comes with many strange perks. He is a man who never gets ill, who never pays taxes. He is effortlessly fit, and has a different woman every night of the week. That is, when he is not on assignment. When activated, Michael becomes Asset 108, a cyber-enhanced human who stands against the strange darkness that lurks at the edge of our world. Armed with equipment that most would find impossible to comprehend, he is sent on missions both strange and deadly. Each dossier pits him against irrational creatures and beings- most with the power to unravel his sanity, or reality itself. It's never a simple job. This job, however, is more complex than most. Mysterious unknown targets are fracturing reality, somewhere in the middle of the Mojave Desert. The Facility has no other Assets in the area, and their telemetry is spotty at best. Without knowing what to expect, Bishop is activated, assigned to a cadre, and sent to the middle of nowhere. What he finds there is both the beginning and the end. This story is the first listing in a series called "The Dossiers of Asset 108." This series is itself the first strand in The Paean of Sundered Dreams, a multi-genre, universe-spanning array of tales with Lovecraftian themes. These stories may be enjoyed as individual series, or as part of the Paean in its proper order. If you are a reader who is interested in The order that all these stories would be read in, at once, that order is as follows: Rationality Zero The Herald of Autumn Collateral Damage Handmaiden's Fury On the Matter of the Red Hand The Primary Protocol Regarding Oaths and the Whispering Flame Slave of the Sky-Captain The Wormwood Event Coming in 2015! "Aberrant Vectors."

30 review for Rationality Zero: A Cyberpunk Espionage Tale of Eldritch Horror

  1. 5 out of 5

    Meenaz Lodhi

    A very exciting plot. A mix of Sci fy/ Fantasy, techno thriller, all in one. I was a bit confused with all the tech terms, but it’s fun to read too.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Sci-Fi & Scary

    Rationality Zero, written by JM Guillen, was an interesting listen. Joel Richards has a voice that is definitely easy on the ears (think he could read me the dictionary and I’d be happy), and he was able to give each of the characters distinct voices so even when three people were talking at once I never lost track of who was saying what. The downside to this, though, was that even though his male voices were pleasing to listen to, the pitch he gave his voice for the female voices set my teeth o Rationality Zero, written by JM Guillen, was an interesting listen. Joel Richards has a voice that is definitely easy on the ears (think he could read me the dictionary and I’d be happy), and he was able to give each of the characters distinct voices so even when three people were talking at once I never lost track of who was saying what. The downside to this, though, was that even though his male voices were pleasing to listen to, the pitch he gave his voice for the female voices set my teeth on edge. Depending on how you look at it, since the females really were not the most likable of characters, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, as it adds to the base dislike of the characters. Narration-wise, this is a solid 4 out of 5. As for the story itself, Rationality Zero was an interesting introduction to the multiverse its set in. (That it is a multiverse is made clear within the first few minutes of the audiobook introduction.) It is set sometime in the future, so the surroundings are identifiable when Asset 108 is at Rationality Zero (which means things are just as they should be, with no freaky stuff happening.) When Asset 108 ends up in a different area, we are given just enough information to know what is going on, without being deluged with unnecessary detail. (I can see people thinking there’s not enough, but it was just the right amount to fire up my imagination.) The tech of this multiverse is fascinating, as is the twist Guillen gives to ‘sleeper agents’. The bad guys are definitely a bit Lovecraftian in nature. There was this tentacle scene that was just…ewww. The pace is perfect, and at 166 pages (if you choose ebook or paperback), it is the perfect length for a quick action-packed afternoon read. If you choose the audiobook version, it’ll definitely please you for several work commutes, as it comes in at just under 6 hours long in length. Overall, the story and narration were well-done, and the series is interesting enough I wouldn’t mind revisiting it. It definitely kept my stress-levels down on some stress-inducing drives to work. I’d recommend it to people who liked Peter Clines’ 14 or The Fold. Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book free in exchange for an honest review. Visit Scifi and Scary's Book Reviews Blog for many other Science Fiction, Horror, and Thriller reviews.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Geli

    Are you a Fringe fan? If so, you have a very good chance of liking this book. Michael Bishop is an Asset, a sleeper agent. Most of the time he lives his life without knowing anything about his real job or even wondering were the money in his accounts comes from. When he wakes up and his called... well, it is then he also remembers why forgetting might be a nice thing. Assets are send to deal with everything that is not Rational. That includes kids with supernatural abilities or eldritch monsters s Are you a Fringe fan? If so, you have a very good chance of liking this book. Michael Bishop is an Asset, a sleeper agent. Most of the time he lives his life without knowing anything about his real job or even wondering were the money in his accounts comes from. When he wakes up and his called... well, it is then he also remembers why forgetting might be a nice thing. Assets are send to deal with everything that is not Rational. That includes kids with supernatural abilities or eldritch monsters searching for their next breakfast. The book has a fast pace, the action scenes are well described and the world feels vast, complicated and real. Something I immensely like. Though, the setting reminds you sooner or later of a computer game. The characters remain a bit one dimensional. It is clear that Michael Bishop is a very well trained agent, but not only does he barely mention anything significant about himself (though that might be a result of him being an Asset) he also does not mention things like his former training or abilities. For example, why would someone who carries often enough a Katana into battle not be trained in sword-fighting? His two friends who from his 'cadre' have more character and personality. I started to like them slowly, maybe slower than strictly necessary, but surely. All together, I liked the book, but it left me feeling like I just read a prequel of a story or series. 3.5 stars. But because I am hungering for more, I round it up to 4 stars.

  4. 5 out of 5

    J.P. Cane

    Rationality Zero, by J.M. Guillen, is a sci-fi novel where a team of agents investigate and eliminate creatures from another reality. While on mission, the agents are cool, calm and deadly; but when they are off the clock, they lead ordinary lives, unaware of the covert assignments they had performed, their memories having been wiped. The opening was a little precarious for me (due to my unfamiliarity), but once I found my stride, I was immersed in this sci-fi story. It follows our protagonist Mi Rationality Zero, by J.M. Guillen, is a sci-fi novel where a team of agents investigate and eliminate creatures from another reality. While on mission, the agents are cool, calm and deadly; but when they are off the clock, they lead ordinary lives, unaware of the covert assignments they had performed, their memories having been wiped. The opening was a little precarious for me (due to my unfamiliarity), but once I found my stride, I was immersed in this sci-fi story. It follows our protagonist Michael Bishop and his teammates Wyatt and Anya as they take on a mission given to them by the Facility. They are to travel to Nevada and look into strange readings pinging out there. The mission takes on larger proportions than anticipated, and lacking backup and resources, the team finds itself facing horrors that threaten their sanity, if not their lives. Each agent is equipped with something like cybernetics and performance-enhancing drugs. Through the Facility’s Lattice, a sort of communications network, each agent is able to send thoughts and receive dossiers and other mission-pertinent information. The access point is a crown of one of his or her teeth. Agents can select among a number of skills and reality-pressing abilities to slot into themselves. The Facility charges its agents with confronting beings that come from a different reality. These realities have their own physics and logic. Agents can perceive weaknesses in our reality where these creatures can push through. Rationality zero represents our ordinary experiences; the further from zero, the weirder things get. (The world that Guillen has created reminded me of the Technocrats from the role-playing game, Mage: the Ascension.) Guillen deftly describes Michael’s immediate world - his gear, the investigation, the horrors. There is confidence in the writing, supported by the shop talk and jargon the characters employ without explanation of their meaning, relying on context of the story to carry that. It’s done well. As is the eeriness, other-worldliness, of the creatures Michael and his teammates encounter. The moments are vivid and suspenseful. But what gave me trouble in the beginning was the vagueness of the mundane world. When are we? My sense is it is the present or near enough. Is the technology that Michael has access to known by the general population? The horrors the team fights, what is their purpose? Are they simply animals living in an ecosystem that borders our reality, and somehow tear through in some aimless way, or is there intention behind their incursions, and if so, what? In the wider world, what have these creatures done to warrant teams like Michael’s to be formed and take action? Is the Facility a government entity or some shadow organization? The book would have benefited from a longer look at Michael’s civilian life to give the reader answers to these questions. Nonetheless, I enjoyed reading the story and would be up for reading more about Michael’s adventures as long as I get a wider view of his world next time.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Michael

    I've been a fan of JM Guillen's writing since I first read his dark fantasy novella The Herald of Autumn, and the reason is simple: Every book of his that I've read so far has been SO FRELLING GOOD! Rationality Zero is no exception. While "science fiction espionage horror tale" might initially sound like there was an explosion at the genre factory, it's a fitting label for an excellent combination: Cybernetically-augmented special forces agents with no memory of who they really are when they're o I've been a fan of JM Guillen's writing since I first read his dark fantasy novella The Herald of Autumn, and the reason is simple: Every book of his that I've read so far has been SO FRELLING GOOD! Rationality Zero is no exception. While "science fiction espionage horror tale" might initially sound like there was an explosion at the genre factory, it's a fitting label for an excellent combination: Cybernetically-augmented special forces agents with no memory of who they really are when they're off duty; Rationality-bending "irrationals" whose existence threatens to break reality in Lovecraftian fashion; Artificial places hidden in side-pockets of space and time; Otherworldly horrors eager to break into our world, or to capture us in theirs. Guillen introduces us to this world--ostensibly our own, with secret terrors lurking on the edges--in a way that's perfectly paced and through the eyes of Michael Bishop, an asset of a place known only as "The Facility." From the moment he's awakened from his off-duty life, both the reader and Michael are drawn into an experience that spirals further and further into a danger greater than Michael has ever experienced. As always, Guillen's writing grips the reader with its palpable style and poetic edge. There were moments when it felt as if I couldn't have stopped reading if my life depended on it, pulled by the intrigue of what might be next and driven by the horror of what had come before. As it's a novella, there are only few characters in Rationality Zero. Guillen constructs each in a way that makes them all real (even as said characters are pulled into situations "outside" of their own reality). Furthermore, the setting is a character in itself, and a pleasure to explore. Seriously, I would love to play a Deus Ex-style computer RPG set in this world. It just works so well. My only nitpick is that there are one or two brief spots when it felt like there was just a little bit too much detail in terms of the workings of the characters' cybernetic augmentations, or their ways of measuring changes in reality. But understand, that really is a minor nitpick, especially as such situations only came about because I was so eager--and anxious--to find out what would happen next. If you like sci-fi, especially with clandestine elements of cosmic horror, you really need to read Rationality Zero before writhing tendrils swarm their way into your pores for you to live in terrifying cosmic unity with the thing that lurks on the other side...

  6. 4 out of 5

    Robert Defrank

    James Bond vs Cthulhu To all appearances, Michael Bishop lives the life of a playboy, but in reality he is an Asset, cybernetically-augmented super-agent, armed with near space age weaponry and part of a highly-classified agency called ‘The Facility,’ tasked with protecting this world’s integrity from the eldritch forces beyond. At any moment he may be called into action. So in a few words: James Bond meets Lovecraft. What struck me first was the use of jargon and concepts that the reader must quic James Bond vs Cthulhu To all appearances, Michael Bishop lives the life of a playboy, but in reality he is an Asset, cybernetically-augmented super-agent, armed with near space age weaponry and part of a highly-classified agency called ‘The Facility,’ tasked with protecting this world’s integrity from the eldritch forces beyond. At any moment he may be called into action. So in a few words: James Bond meets Lovecraft. What struck me first was the use of jargon and concepts that the reader must quickly adjust to as the operatives employ their advanced tech and discuss various terms for alien entities and eldritch events. Fans of Tom Clancy will get a kick out of the tech-speak. The adventure kicks off to a breakneck start and doesn’t let up as the adventure takes Michael and two fellow assets into the deserts of Nevada to investigate strange goings on. They find more than they bargain for as alien realities have begun impinging on our own. The alien conspiracy they find will test them to their limit of their abilities and call for every weapon in their arsenal. An inclusion of another genre and style into the Irrational Worlds saga.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Grace Troxel

    This review originally appeared on my blog, Books Without Any Pictures: http://bookswithoutanypictures.com/20... In Rationality Zero by J.M. Guillen, James Bond meets H.P Lovecraft as a secret agent attempts to save the world from invading eldritch horrors. (The dictionary on this computer suggests I change the word “eldritch” to “britches,” which is not at the same, although depending on whose britches could be equally as terrifying.) Michael Bishop is an Agent of the Facility. Most of the time, h This review originally appeared on my blog, Books Without Any Pictures: http://bookswithoutanypictures.com/20... In Rationality Zero by J.M. Guillen, James Bond meets H.P Lovecraft as a secret agent attempts to save the world from invading eldritch horrors. (The dictionary on this computer suggests I change the word “eldritch” to “britches,” which is not at the same, although depending on whose britches could be equally as terrifying.) Michael Bishop is an Agent of the Facility. Most of the time, he has the perfect life. He’s physically fit, even though he never exercises, there’s always money in his accounts, and he spends his days living the good life with sexy ladies. Until, of course, he is activated, and the machinery embedded in his brain allows him to remember his other life, where he is a cybernetically enhanced operative who protects the world from deviations in Rationality. In essence, all of the human world operates at Rationality Zero. Psychic events, eldritch horrors, monsters, and other weird shit cause the Rationality level to deviate. It’s all very mathy, and I love it. In his latest assignment, Michael is dealing with a threat that’s unlike any other deviation from Rationality that he’s experienced before. Usually, the creatures he fights are low-level and kind of stupid. But this time, they’re intelligent, and they know that Facility Agents are coming. They lie in wait for the opportune moment to strike… If you are new to Guillen’s work, it’s best to explain that Rationality Zero is a part of two different series. The first is The Dossiers of Agent 108, which is the story of Michael Bishop, which is presumably set on our own planet. The second is The Paean of Sundered Dreams, which is a larger shared universe comprised of different worlds which are each undergoing their own struggle with impending doom and darkness. The stories in The Paean of Sundered Dreams encompass many different genres, but each world is going through its own version of the same calamity and must respond to it. I’d recommend Rationality Zero as a good starting point, because like Slave of the Sky Captain, it has a lot more context and explanation than some of the other stories in the universe. However, unlike Slave of the Sky Captain, there are already sequels, just waiting to be devoured…

  8. 5 out of 5

    Anne - Books of My Heart

    This review was originally posted at The Book Nympho I was gifted Rationality Zero in exchange for an honest review by the narrator. The characters and world were described in scientific details. Usually, this is ok for me, even fun and exciting. All the details for world-building were, well too many details, not enough emotional depth. And I got no emotions for the characters. Were they good guys or bad guys? What was their purpose really? Who knows? There was action and battles were fought. Why This review was originally posted at The Book Nympho I was gifted Rationality Zero in exchange for an honest review by the narrator. The characters and world were described in scientific details. Usually, this is ok for me, even fun and exciting. All the details for world-building were, well too many details, not enough emotional depth. And I got no emotions for the characters. Were they good guys or bad guys? What was their purpose really? Who knows? There was action and battles were fought. Why? I don’t know and sadly, I don’t care. THAT, that is a problem. The concept was intriguing. If I cared about the characters, it would probably work for me. I did enjoy the narrator. The voice was easy to understand and differentiated the various people well. It definitely would have been hard to finish if I were reading it. A small thing, the audio chapters don’t match up with the book chapters. There are also a few phrases used too many times for me. But if I liked the book more, I might find idiosyncratic phrases endearing. Rationality Zero is almost, in so many ways, but it just wasn’t enough. I feel badly since I wanted to like this book more. I think perhaps it was too abstract for me. If you like the feeling of uncertainty about what really happened or why it did, this might be for you.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Anchit

    The book is set in an extremely imaginative world. I'm 31 and I had trouble grasping what's going on in the world. There are way too many new concepts which are just mentioned as if it's normal everyday language with little explanation. It was fascinating at first until it started becoming annoying because you don't understand what the hell is going on. All the new concepts started becoming too much for me. so I had to drop the book. but I can't give it anything less than a 4. It would be a sin t The book is set in an extremely imaginative world. I'm 31 and I had trouble grasping what's going on in the world. There are way too many new concepts which are just mentioned as if it's normal everyday language with little explanation. It was fascinating at first until it started becoming annoying because you don't understand what the hell is going on. All the new concepts started becoming too much for me. so I had to drop the book. but I can't give it anything less than a 4. It would be a sin to do that because so much effort has been put into it. I was really impressed by how imaginative and thought-out his world is. Maybe some day when I get some leisure time I'm going to re-attempt this. The "about the author" page has been written very very brilliantly. Very articulate in his writing and a bit of humor mixed in in that page. If anyone gets a chance to pick up this book I would highly recommend that you read that page definitely.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Neal Leffler

    This is an introduction to a whole new world, different than any other I have read before. Somewhere between Cuthulhu and Portal with some ninja James bond thrown in for the fun of it. It stars off a little dense in explanation with the payoff of several engaging scenes of action. The inventiveness of the story drew me in and I can't wait to read more. This is an introduction to a whole new world, different than any other I have read before. Somewhere between Cuthulhu and Portal with some ninja James bond thrown in for the fun of it. It stars off a little dense in explanation with the payoff of several engaging scenes of action. The inventiveness of the story drew me in and I can't wait to read more.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Michael Smith

    Parts of this book were very entertaining and made me want to read the next books in the series. Other parts of the book were overly chauvinistic, lacking multi-dimensional characters, and over-explained. Overall, I'm happy I read it, but it left me thinking that this was an amazing world with a great plot, but not all that well executed. Parts of this book were very entertaining and made me want to read the next books in the series. Other parts of the book were overly chauvinistic, lacking multi-dimensional characters, and over-explained. Overall, I'm happy I read it, but it left me thinking that this was an amazing world with a great plot, but not all that well executed.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Debra

    Really enjoyed this story, and looking forward to reading more about Asset 108! Very reminiscent of Simon R. Green' s Nightside series. Really enjoyed this story, and looking forward to reading more about Asset 108! Very reminiscent of Simon R. Green' s Nightside series.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Susan

    Michael Bishop has a cushy life complete with female companionship. That is when he’s not on active assignment as Asset 108. The Facility uses it’s cyberenhanced humans as it will. Now Bishop and his little cadre are on assignment in the Mojave desert. It’s not what they expected. It’s much worse, involving monsters that assault their sanity as much as their physical bodies. This was a fun, brain candy kind of cyberpunk with Cthulhu monsters story. It’s fast paced with little character developmen Michael Bishop has a cushy life complete with female companionship. That is when he’s not on active assignment as Asset 108. The Facility uses it’s cyberenhanced humans as it will. Now Bishop and his little cadre are on assignment in the Mojave desert. It’s not what they expected. It’s much worse, involving monsters that assault their sanity as much as their physical bodies. This was a fun, brain candy kind of cyberpunk with Cthulhu monsters story. It’s fast paced with little character development but lots of monsters and tech. Bishop gets the most screen time and he’s fun, having both brains and brawn. Wyatt is a bit of a loose canon cowboy who also happens to have some serious cyber skills. Anya is their coordinator and spends most of the book on overwatch. She’s monitoring the situation and feeding them intel as it comes in. She can also upload packets of info & skills to them, allowing their cyberenhanced bodies to take on new weapons with full aptitude. While much of the story is just action, Guillen has the basis for something really good here. Who doesn’t want to witness a big throwdown between cyberpunk warriors and Cthulhu minions? There’s plenty of creativity on display here. I would like to see the character personalities expanded and deepened. This is probably a bit tricky since Michael Bishop doesn’t retain his memories from his Asset 108 assignments. Still, I have faith that this author can do it. Wyatt and Anya could use some deepening too. I wonder what Wyatt does when he’s not being used by the Facility? Perhaps he runs a kangaroo & capybara ranch in Utah. I really liked that the monsters were both strange and deadly. There’s some tentacle action in a few scenes which makes me wish I was safely sealed in a big environmental bubble! There’s no reasoning with these monsters. You can’t bargain with something like this. It was fun and I look forward to Book 2 in the series. More Cthulhu monsters? I can only hope! The Narration: Joel Richards was a good match for this book. He is Michael Bishop, Asset 108. I also liked his feminine accent for Anya. He also makes a good old boy Wyatt.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Bonnie Dale Keck

    kindle unlimited but must have gotten it on freebie day...cross between lovecraft, shroom trip, and reminds me a bit of Ian Dex books from John Logsdon...and that is 'good' and that is 'bad', js {have read all of his so really, js}. The world is not what it seems.Michael Bishop is an Asset of the Facility- a job that comes with many strange perks. He is a man who never gets ill, who never pays taxes. He is effortlessly fit, and has a different woman every night of the week. That is, when he is no kindle unlimited but must have gotten it on freebie day...cross between lovecraft, shroom trip, and reminds me a bit of Ian Dex books from John Logsdon...and that is 'good' and that is 'bad', js {have read all of his so really, js}. The world is not what it seems.Michael Bishop is an Asset of the Facility- a job that comes with many strange perks. He is a man who never gets ill, who never pays taxes. He is effortlessly fit, and has a different woman every night of the week. That is, when he is not on assignment. When activated, Michael becomes Asset 108, an enhanced human who stands against the strange darkness that lurks at the edge of our world. Armed with equipment that most would find impossible to comprehend, he is sent on missions both strange and deadly. Each dossier pits him against irrational creatures and beings- most with the power to unravel his sanity, or reality itself. It's never a simple job. A living weapon. An attack on the laws of reality. One chance to save the world. Michael Bishop is Asset 108, a bioengineered and technologically augmented living weapon. He stands as humanity’s protection against the horrors that lurk beyond our reality. Now, mysterious radicals are fracturing the laws of physics within the Mojave Desert. As the very material of existence begins to unravel, madmen with incomprehensible powers hunt Bishop and his crew, driving them into an alternate horrific dimension. When Bishop delves deeper into labyrinthine mysteries, he is hurled into a conspiracy of inhuman intrigue—one that threatens the survival of every man, woman, and child on Earth. Rationality Zero (The Dossiers of Asset 108) The Primary Protocol (The Dossiers of Asset 108 Book 2) A Grasping Darkness: The two first stories of Asset 108 Aberrant Vectors (The Dossiers of Asset 108 Book 3) Cascading Error:Critical (The Dossiers of Asset 108 Book 4)

  15. 5 out of 5

    Laura Ruetz

    A little bit cyberpunk, a little bit Philip K Dick, and a little bit Lovecraftian and you get this book. This is a great blend of technology, otherworlds and action. The integration of all, including the characters is well done and really helps draw me in. There is a lot going on with this book, and all of it good. If you enjoy your sci-fi with a dash of cyberpunk and weirdness, you will be as engrossed in this book as I was. I really enjoyed this book and would absolutely read more by this auth A little bit cyberpunk, a little bit Philip K Dick, and a little bit Lovecraftian and you get this book. This is a great blend of technology, otherworlds and action. The integration of all, including the characters is well done and really helps draw me in. There is a lot going on with this book, and all of it good. If you enjoy your sci-fi with a dash of cyberpunk and weirdness, you will be as engrossed in this book as I was. I really enjoyed this book and would absolutely read more by this author and with these characters. It packs a lot of information in, so this isn't a fast read by any means, but all of those details are what really brings this book alive, especially as they are describing the other worlds/locations and the technology so you can almost picture it. I received a free copy of this novel.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Norman

    A very interesting and unusual plot. Michael is an asset of of the Facility an organization set up to fight interdemensional beings. Michael's body is so programmed that he is almost indestructible based on a so called crown in his head. Normally is is just a rich , handsome male until he is activated. Then everything changes..This time there are extraordinary circumstances and he with Wyatt another asset and Anya , a Preceptor are sent on a missionwhich gets out of control and the three are cas A very interesting and unusual plot. Michael is an asset of of the Facility an organization set up to fight interdemensional beings. Michael's body is so programmed that he is almost indestructible based on a so called crown in his head. Normally is is just a rich , handsome male until he is activated. Then everything changes..This time there are extraordinary circumstances and he with Wyatt another asset and Anya , a Preceptor are sent on a missionwhich gets out of control and the three are cased into one adventure afte another. The language is rather technical but flows with the story. A very good read.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Subere23

    I love Cyberpunk/Post Cyberpunk, I love Lovecraftian horror, and I love mysterious special agents... Somehow J.M. Guillen has blended all of these things together in a book that does not feel like patchwork. And on top of that, through Irrational Worlds is creating a world that it tied together through multiple timelines. It's a big and complex undertaking and I really hope that J.M. Guillen continues building this world out. I love Cyberpunk/Post Cyberpunk, I love Lovecraftian horror, and I love mysterious special agents... Somehow J.M. Guillen has blended all of these things together in a book that does not feel like patchwork. And on top of that, through Irrational Worlds is creating a world that it tied together through multiple timelines. It's a big and complex undertaking and I really hope that J.M. Guillen continues building this world out.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Aviar Savijon

    As Always Author J. M. Guillen doesn't disappoint. Action packed and adventure driven this book is amazing and must be read by all I loved it. I loved it, I loved it. Brilliance feels the mind of J.M. Guillen As Always Author J. M. Guillen doesn't disappoint. Action packed and adventure driven this book is amazing and must be read by all I loved it. I loved it, I loved it. Brilliance feels the mind of J.M. Guillen

  19. 5 out of 5

    Kelley

    A bit more Lovecraft than I expected but quite enjoyable.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Nicholas Anderson

    This was OK... I wasn't TOO impressed. If I got the sequels for real cheap, I might continue with the series, but I'm not chomping at the bit to go on. This was OK... I wasn't TOO impressed. If I got the sequels for real cheap, I might continue with the series, but I'm not chomping at the bit to go on.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Kevin

    Keith Laumer's Dinosaur Beach meets H.P. Lovecraft and ... well not quite, but close. Do you like action adventure SF? You'll love this. Recommended. Keith Laumer's Dinosaur Beach meets H.P. Lovecraft and ... well not quite, but close. Do you like action adventure SF? You'll love this. Recommended.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Norma

    ( Format : Audiobook ) "... the carpet was avocado green..."" Many would be envious of Michael Bishop's life. With regular large sums of money paid tax free, direct into his bank account, he has no need to work. His luxury apartment and the utilities which service it are all prepaid. Even his car, clothes and shopping are bought for him: Anything he needs he only has to request it. And he is never ill. But Bishop has a secret: he is asset 108, and,: when the need arises, he can be called upon to ( Format : Audiobook ) "... the carpet was avocado green..."" Many would be envious of Michael Bishop's life. With regular large sums of money paid tax free, direct into his bank account, he has no need to work. His luxury apartment and the utilities which service it are all prepaid. Even his car, clothes and shopping are bought for him: Anything he needs he only has to request it. And he is never ill. But Bishop has a secret: he is asset 108, and,: when the need arises, he can be called upon to protect the stability of the world against singularity changes. We meet Michael just after he receives one such call and follow him as he is sent, with two other assets, to investigate some strange readings at a spot in the heart of the desert. Bishop suspects that this is an unusual mission, a feeling reinforced when he is lured into a trap whilst still travelling. Written in the first person, the story has an immediacy as Bishop and companions struggle to discover what is happening, and survive. It is slightly reminiscent of gamer (LitRPG) novels in that the protagonists move amongst different levels of reality, fighting with whatever weapons they carry in their arsenal, and facing strange monsters along the way. But the only prize that they are fighting for is the survival of humanity itself. Narrator, Joel Richards, has fully immersed himself in the character of Michael Bishop. His voice is warm and well modulated, beautiful as befits the description of the man; the reading is pace perfect and the other characters are also individually recognisable in dialogue. His performance helps to transform this already enjoyable story into something special. I was very fortunate in being gifted my copy of Rationality Zero. My thanks for that. I am now looking forward to hearing the second book in this series.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Suralxiong

    Rationality Zero (The Paean of Sundered Dreams) by JM Guillen-or unknown This book was free- it does not look to be free presently- so, lucky me. There is a claim here that this is part of an interconnected series with an implication that it's written by more than one author though only one author's name shows up at any point; most times there is no mention of the author involved from what I can tell. I so far can find 7 of these:: Red Handed (A Hard-boiled Steampunk Detective story) (The Paean of S Rationality Zero (The Paean of Sundered Dreams) by JM Guillen-or unknown This book was free- it does not look to be free presently- so, lucky me. There is a claim here that this is part of an interconnected series with an implication that it's written by more than one author though only one author's name shows up at any point; most times there is no mention of the author involved from what I can tell. I so far can find 7 of these:: Red Handed (A Hard-boiled Steampunk Detective story) (The Paean of Sundered Dreams) The Herald of Autumn (The Paean of Sundered Dreams) Rationality Zero (The Paean of Sundered Dreams) Bound (The Beckoning Stanza) (The Paean of Sundered Dreams) Slave of the Sky Captain (The Paean of Sundered Dreams) Handmaiden's Fury (The Paean of Sundered Dreams) Summoned (The Paean of Sundered Dreams) At least four of them seem to be erotica novels-only by way of reviews- I've only read the one which is not much in the erotica. This series seems to fall into an Amazon created genre of serial novellas that often are portioned out at 99 cents each. These are 2.99 possibly because some are erotica or because someone told the author that fewer people go for the free and 99 cent novels. Whichever it is I will probably wait for any free offerings on these. I won't say that I didn't enjoy Rationality Zero - because I did. It reminded me of the surreal worlds of Philip K. Dick and also Keith Laumer's- Lafayette O'Leary series. Throw in some matrix for fun and probably a bit of any random MMORPG out there. It was fairly entertaining and it has some neat concepts. Basically we have the hero's Michael,Wyatt and Anya; operatives who are unaware of their jobs and the organization they work for until they are called to work a job. They live normal lives up to that point where they are touched in their neural interface and remember who they are and that they have another important assignment to get to. There's an element in the writing that drove me bonkers. Too many times the characters seemed to eschew the use of contractions and it not only slowed the pace it made the dialogue seem stilted and un-natural. (Such as- "I cannot do that Dave." as opposed to "I can't do that, Dave.") Maybe deliberately drawn out as though these people possessed no emotions whatsoever. Maybe it's intentional yet when I think it is; one of them uses a couple of contractions and I'm at a loss. I suppose that I could use that as a key to discover if the same author writes these stories or if there is an open possibility that there are several authors. Either way if you like some of the surreal in your fiction or maybe a bit of justified erotica (that's from someone else's review. And, not in this installment.) These are the books for you. There are box sets but they seem to make no sense though if you can figure it out you can save a few bucks by buying two or three of the offered box sets. Sural

  24. 4 out of 5

    Somekindofnobody

    I don't even know how to begin because this story was over-the-top GOOD...no...GREAT (Tony the Tiger would have spilled his milk all over the place). We live in the rational world, but what if people were born not even realizing (for a time) that they could cause instability in the fabric of our rational reality? It's hard to explain unless you read the book so I'll try and make it easy. Lets say a person (a boy, a grandma, anyone) could cause irrationality? These people either willing or accide I don't even know how to begin because this story was over-the-top GOOD...no...GREAT (Tony the Tiger would have spilled his milk all over the place). We live in the rational world, but what if people were born not even realizing (for a time) that they could cause instability in the fabric of our rational reality? It's hard to explain unless you read the book so I'll try and make it easy. Lets say a person (a boy, a grandma, anyone) could cause irrationality? These people either willing or accidently cause disturbances and what if a hole was torn in the veil of OUR rational world? It's almost as if two realities exist at the same time in different poles of existence; rational and irrational. The creatures that exist in the other reality are WICKED COOL!!! One SICK CRAZY spider thing slips into our reality, winding up in a bathroom stall which made for some interesting scenes. At one point the team of assets (that keep our world stable) actually drive straight out of our reality and into the irrational reality. Everything is different and crazy inside the veil including the crazed beasts. The assets are like the Spartans in Halo mixed with Neo from Matrix. They have an allotted amount of space in their crowns where they can upload abilities or knowledge. They can upload all the knowledge of stealth or agility or combat or knowledge of a martial art or whatnot. But since they are limited they have to choose wisely for each mission. The assets keep our world stable but something very wrong is happening in the desert. Is it an anomaly or is someone ripping through the veil? Is it on purpose or accident? What would happen if the realities opened up to each other? This book kept me reading through three SOLID hours and I even skipped going to see The HOBBIT to stay home and read this. I was at the point where they had driven through the veil and into the other reality and the giant wild-eyed beasts were charging and I said, "Sorry guys, I'll see a matinee tomorrow." I am NOT kidding. This has the feel of things like Matrix, The Mist, and Halo (which was made into a video game) but with its OWN unique spin. I have NEVER read ANYTHING like this and it was NOTHING like I thought from the cover. This book was so dang fun to read I want to write this ALL IN CAPS! Holy cow, 5 stars to this author! Why five? Because it was good enough to make me miss the Hobbit.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Chris Torretta

    Fascinating story! This was fascinating! I read the synopsis and I was not completely sold. Mostly because it is sci fi. There was just something about it that sounded intriguing enough to give it a go, and it paid off! First off, the beginning starts with a note. Each of these can be read separately but to get all of the clues, all of them must be read! Interesting! Michael is sort of like a cyborg or something. He is able to download and remember information much like a computer. He processes info Fascinating story! This was fascinating! I read the synopsis and I was not completely sold. Mostly because it is sci fi. There was just something about it that sounded intriguing enough to give it a go, and it paid off! First off, the beginning starts with a note. Each of these can be read separately but to get all of the clues, all of them must be read! Interesting! Michael is sort of like a cyborg or something. He is able to download and remember information much like a computer. He processes information, and even needs certain upgrades depending on his assignment. But, those upgrades can only be used if he has enough room. The language is pretty easy to pick up. There is a bit of jargon, but not so much that I felt totally out of my element. The main characters, pull you right in but at the same time, almost keep the reader at arm’s length. Not enough to cause the book to become boring, but just enough to feel like they are way too busy working and fighting abnormalities to worry about telling each other about themselves. When they are not working, they slip back into their lives, but forget that they are agents. They have lives but their lives are far and away from being agents! This was a short story, but pretty much had me from beginning to end. It did take me a minute to get into the Sci Fi atmosphere, but I attribute that to my lack of love for sci fi. Really curious about the next book in the series now. The audio was brilliant. I could have listened to this and to the narrator, Joel Richards, forever. He has a deep, rich voice. He was great with the different accents but also with the highs and lows of the story. As Michael is getting upset Joel’s voice kept up with the anxiety. The three main characters are also easily distinguishable even though they talk to each other, and sometimes over each other, often! In short: lovely, quite fascinating story. Took me a minute to be fully engaged but once I was I didn’t want the story to end! On a side note: Cool cover! Received by author, through audiobookreviewer.com, in exchange for an honest review.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Missy

    I am not one for reading science fiction. I am more into fantasy and paranormal romanace. With that being said, I have thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. (2nd paragraph is my reaction of the overall book. 3rd paragraph has vague spoilers.) I first encountered this book as a free book ad at Amazon.com through my suggested feed on facebook. I decided to download it and read the first couple chapters. (I always read the first couple chapters if I have never read the author's work. I give everyone I am not one for reading science fiction. I am more into fantasy and paranormal romanace. With that being said, I have thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. (2nd paragraph is my reaction of the overall book. 3rd paragraph has vague spoilers.) I first encountered this book as a free book ad at Amazon.com through my suggested feed on facebook. I decided to download it and read the first couple chapters. (I always read the first couple chapters if I have never read the author's work. I give everyone a fair shot.) Well, I was so hooked I ended up reading half the book before I realized it was 2 in the morning. I finally convinced myself I need sleep. The next night, as soon as I could, I continued reading. (I have a young child so I only get to read after bedtime.) I was so glued to my tablet I had ran the battery dead. I scrambled to plug it in and continued to read as soon as the Kindle app loaded. That was 3 hours ago. It is now 3 am and I should've gone to bed and let my tablet charge, but I was so into the book, I couldn't put it down. I had to find out happened. I just had to finish it! I recommend this book to anyone who likes action. The opening chapters were low key and mellow containing simple details of a current day bachelor on a date. An unexpected twist interupts the date and from here it is one awesome intense action scene after another with thoughtful twists and turns in the plot. I have never come across a book, movie or tv show (I love sci shows and movies) that contains the "techology" and concepts I have just expierenced. And here I thought authors and writers were running out of new ideas with all the movie remakes. I WAS TOTALLY WRONG!!! I will definitely continue to read this series. Apparently each book stand on their own and can be read out of order, but they are all mysteriously connected somehow. The challenge the author has given is to discover how they are all connected. Challenge accepted!!! I give JM Guillen a high five for creating new and never used concepts. (I am trying my best not to give spoilers.) READ THIS BOOK!! YOU WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED!!!

  27. 5 out of 5

    Heather

    Rationality Zero, by JM Guillen, started off a little rocky and I thought I wasn’t going to like it much. While it’s good to get details of the universe early on, the author over-explained a lot of things. It felt as though he was warming up for the ‘real’ story. There were also a few details I couldn’t understand–if the team’s Designate can pass her orders on to them via speaking with them mind-to-mind using their electronic implants, then why did she feel it necessary to get on a bus with the Rationality Zero, by JM Guillen, started off a little rocky and I thought I wasn’t going to like it much. While it’s good to get details of the universe early on, the author over-explained a lot of things. It felt as though he was warming up for the ‘real’ story. There were also a few details I couldn’t understand–if the team’s Designate can pass her orders on to them via speaking with them mind-to-mind using their electronic implants, then why did she feel it necessary to get on a bus with the main character and sit opposite him while doing the mind-speech thing for the whole team? There are a few details like this that seem unnecessary, unproductive, or even counter-productive. I still don’t understand why they feel it necessary to have sleeper agents rather than just agents; it seemed more complicated and costly. Once the plot grew tense, most of the things that I disliked went away. There’s plenty of fast-paced action as our heroes fall into a trap, find what they’re looking for, and try to figure out and solve what’s going on without dying. Their own tech seems to mimic some of the reality-bending abilities of the Irrationals, which is rather fascinating–apparently the agents are allowed to bend reality as long as it’s in the form of technology and in the service of their masters. The dynamics of the good guy team were fun; each character had his or her own role and personality. I did have a couple of moments of “why didn’t they do X?”, but in general they did a good job. The tech feels more like “science fantasy” than straight science fiction, but not in a bad way. Overall I’m glad I read Rationality Zero, and I would probably read a sequel if it came across my desk NOTE: Book provided free by publisher for review Visit my site for a longer review including premise: http://www.errantdreams.com/2015/04/r...

  28. 5 out of 5

    Katie

    I absolutely loved this book. I ended up looking for more books about Bishop after I finished it. Rationality Zero is a book with a modern-day feel but with sci-fi type technology and a secret organisation that is trying to protect the world. One of this organisation's agents is Michael Bishop. He has a "crown" that activates only when he is needed for a mission otherwise he is a "normal" human. If you count normal as someone who has full bank accounts and no known job. When he is needed his crow I absolutely loved this book. I ended up looking for more books about Bishop after I finished it. Rationality Zero is a book with a modern-day feel but with sci-fi type technology and a secret organisation that is trying to protect the world. One of this organisation's agents is Michael Bishop. He has a "crown" that activates only when he is needed for a mission otherwise he is a "normal" human. If you count normal as someone who has full bank accounts and no known job. When he is needed his crown is activated and he is Asset 108. Being an Asset is dangerous but they keep the rest of the world "safe" from all sorts of things. In this book he quickly realizes that this job is not a normal job. I did not know what Lovecraftian was at first but from what I've read about it I do believe this book is defiantly part of this grouping. The things he and his team fight are interesting but also horrifying. The book deals with various realities or worlds. Some people can make "irrational" things happen and the facility has to stop them. They work to stop the other worlds from coming into our world either through these people or through other ways. The reason I rate this a 4 and not a 5 star is purely because it does go a bit slow at first and the descriptions kind of made me get out of the story but since it is a first book of the series the descriptions were normal. This is a new I guess "world" that some things had to be described to understand. It was a bit to easy for me to put it down as well and I was not pulled into it as much as I would have liked. I am not sure why it did not pull me as much as other books but it just didn't. This being said I will defiantly read more of the series. I want to mention I got the book for free but I am not sure if it was for a review or not.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Katie

    I absolutely loved this book. I ended up looking for more books about Bishop after I finished it. Rationality Zero is a book with a modern-day feel but with sci-fi type technology and a secret organisation that is trying to protect the world. One of this organisation's agents is Michael Bishop. He has a "crown" that activates only when he is needed for a mission otherwise he is a "normal" human. If you count normal as someone who has full bank accounts and no known job. When he is needed his crow I absolutely loved this book. I ended up looking for more books about Bishop after I finished it. Rationality Zero is a book with a modern-day feel but with sci-fi type technology and a secret organisation that is trying to protect the world. One of this organisation's agents is Michael Bishop. He has a "crown" that activates only when he is needed for a mission otherwise he is a "normal" human. If you count normal as someone who has full bank accounts and no known job. When he is needed his crown is activated and he is Asset 108. Being an Asset is dangerous but they keep the rest of the world "safe" from all sorts of things. In this book he quickly realizes that this job is not a normal job. I did not know what Lovecraftian was at first but from what I've read about it I do believe this book is defiantly part of this grouping. The things he and his team fight are interesting but also horrifying. The book deals with various realities or worlds. Some people can make "irrational" things happen and the facility has to stop them. They work to stop the other worlds from coming into our world either through these people or through other ways. The reason I rate this a 4 and not a 5 star is purely because it does go a bit slow at first and the descriptions kind of made me get out of the story but since it is a first book of the series the descriptions were normal. This is a new I guess "world" that some things had to be described to understand. It was a bit to easy for me to put it down as well and I was not pulled into it as much as I would have liked. I am not sure why it did not pull me as much as other books but it just didn't. This being said I will defiantly read more of the series. I want to mention I got the book for free but I am not sure if it was for a review or not.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Havelock

    I'm on chapter nine and so far there's not really any plot to speak of. Maybe I'll come back and finish it at some point, but right now I'm just finding it boring. I'm on chapter nine and so far there's not really any plot to speak of. Maybe I'll come back and finish it at some point, but right now I'm just finding it boring.

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