“I would like to welcome the world to The Die-Fi Experiment. Please join us in the fun that is the deterioration of the world by means of social media.”
The Die-Fi Experiment is the tale of newly wed Marie, who with her husband, travels to Japan. They have both suffered emotional trauma and feel that getting away from everything will give them the time to heal. No-one knows where they are, the couple even ban themselves from using social media to prevent detection. They don’t want to be found.
In a believable twist, whilst trying to earn themselves a free phone the young couple find themselves forced to take part in ‘The Die-Fi Experiment’, a game show live streamed on the internet where contestants compete with each other to the death.
There’s a lot packed into this novellas concise 74 pages, we have a damning critique of social media and the power of the internet, an incredibly violent horror story, made all the more abhorrent as the faceless game show hosts are fuelled by ‘likes’ and other digital interaction whilst at the stories heart, for me anyway, a love story. Love itself is an incredibly powerful weapon, what would you do on a loved ones behalf to prevent them pain?
I’ll be honest, the violence in The Die-Fi Experiment was bordering on too much for me. I’m not a fan of extreme violence in fiction, but M.R. Tapia has been skillful in giving the reader breathing time. Here chapters alternate between the horrors of the game show and the unnamed husband relaying the story of how he met Marie, their romance and how they ended up in Japan. In doing this you understand how strong a relationship they have, I felt fully invested in their lives, this juxtaposition from normality to utter carnage worked incredibly well. Had it just been constant violence it would have been too much, here I was completely in the husbands head, the utter terror about his own mortality beaten only by his determination to save his wife.
The Die-Fi Experiment is an incredibly powerful, well written emotional rollercoaster of a novella. This is the second release I’ve read by M.R. Tapia, and certainly won’t be the last. I’m looking forward to reading his debut novel ‘Sugar Skulls’ which is out November 2017.
Oh, and if you see an offer for a free iPhone-X…walk away!
Star Rating (out of 5): 4****
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