"Walter Jon Williams is a visionary of tremendous power and originality . . . He kills every damn time."
--Junot Díaz, Pulitzer Prize-winning author
Game designer Dagmar Shaw is skilled at creating vast online entertainments with millions of players. But Dagmar is haunted by her past, and by memories of a burning city, and of the friends who died as a bloody vengeance plot played to its conclusion around her.
Dagmar is an expert at manipulating the online players known as the Group Mind. But when an acquaintance appears with the plan to manipulate an entire Middle Eastern country, to stage a revolution and make the people think it was all their own idea, Dagmar is both appalled and intrigued.
Can she crash the Deep State? And can she do it without creating another bloodbath?
This is no longer a game. The bullets, the tanks, and the spies are real, and so is the danger as Dagmar plunges into the task of gaming an entire state.
When it first appeared, Deep State gained a modest amount of infamy as the novel that predicted the Arab Spring, and appeared the very week the Egyptians occupied Tahrir Square.
"And since this is an intrigue thriller, there are undercurrents and deceptions and hidden agendas and secret loyalties and unexpected betrayals, deeper states of operation and deeper games being played for higher (or lower) stakes. Dagmar faces not only the normal perils of an elaborate and delicate con, but those of the deep state of international politics, where you don't know who has been bought or intimidated, who might be a plant, who has a history that will blow up at the worst possible moment." --Russel Letson, Locus
"Williams has crafted a slick, intelligent techno-thriller that never allows the melodramatic storyline to swamp the cast of sympathetic characters." --Eric Brown, the Guardian
"Both prescient and utterly of the moment, featuring an ingeniously concocted and elaborated plot and a compelling cast of characters, Deep State is a success on every level . . . if ever one of Williams' books had crossover potential . . . this is it.
" . . . The biggest plot coupon of all . . . is really the card on which the whole hand turns, and Williams does not blow the trick. On the contrary, he weaves this bit of scientific or pseudo-scientific legerdemain very deftly into the warp and weft of his plot, giving the novel that satisfies both logically and emotionally. Like his doughty heroine, Williams is absolutely at the top of his game here." ---Paul Witcover, Locus