Monday, April 3, 2017

Softlife by James R. Hardin - Review Tour and Giveaway

by James R. Hardin


GENRE: Science fiction


Everyone thought the terrorist had completely destroyed the space station where the first faster-than-light spaceship was built. Actually, the survivors were implemented as softlife in the computers, and years later they and their virtual descendants live in a thriving but isolated community. Jason1, one of the few who used to be flesh and blood, doubts that this incorporeal existence really qualifies as life. But Iooi, a young native softlife, considers her kind an evolutionary step beyond biology, and three-dimensional space an annoying abstraction.

A spaceship arrives, and the two of them stow away in its computer, intending to establish ties with the rest of humanity. But the ship’s crew is evasive about why they came and what their plans are. And the experimental spacecraft, lost since the attack on the space station, has returned, carrying an unexpected threat the softlife may be uniquely qualified to fight. Working with other softlife, an old friend, and the intimidating Space Force general Heather Lacey, Jason1 must take on terrorists, truly malicious software, and his own self-doubts.



Softlife takes a unusual path as the main characters have downloaded themselves into a vast computer network.  I liked how the author created such a diverse culture in a computer network.  There is a lot to watch in this story.  First there are all the characters who started out as carbon (before they downloaded and then there are their children.  Who knew computer characters could have sex.  Oh and then there is the faster than life space ship who left and then returned.  This is a very fast paced story with many interesting and unusual ideas packed into one 263 page book.  A great story for SciFi fans.


“History will be made today,” Jason Sangretti said, “and you two are going to miss it, glued to that computer.” He floated in the air positioned as if he were sitting in an invisible easy chair facing the large monitor on the wall, even drumming his fingers on the nonexistent chair's arm. He didn't really mean to be showing off his expertise in zero gravity—OK, maybe he did. As young as he was, his Space Force training still put his capability far ahead of even the experienced spacecraft construction workers here on the Starbase.

Amos gave Jason a brief look, but William's eyes never left his monitor as he said, “This is not unique. Since history is the accumulated sequence of past events, history is made every day.” He drifted in a contorted position beside his computer, clinging to it with one hand and awkwardly correcting for the reaction as he typed on it with the other. Jason had never seen William in normal gravity, but he was sure William would be awkward there as well.

“You know what I mean. Isn't it great to be alive on a day like this?”

“I have no experience being in a state other than alive, so I have no basis for comparison.”

With two precise flips of his arms, Jason rotated his imaginary chair to face William. “Now you're just being annoying on purpose.”

William finally looked up and grinned momentarily, then just said, “Yes, I am,” and returned to his typing.

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

James R. Hardin received his first rejection from a major publisher when he was 11 years old and has been writing fiction intermittently ever since. Softlife is his first novel, though certainly not his last. James supports himself and his family as an engineer in the R&D department of a major turbomachinery manufacturer, where he engages in aerodynamic design, computational fluid dynamics analyses, and battle with temperamental computers. When not writing or engineering, he often plays or composes music, usually on a piano or synthesizer. James lives in western Pennsylvania with his wife, a varying number of sons depending on who's home, and a lazy dog. You can find out more about James and his writing, as well as download a few of his musical compositions, at his website




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James R. Hardin will be awarding a $25 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Thanks, Jo Jones, for hosting this first stop on my tour! I'll be in and out checking on comments, except for a few hours in the middle of the day (Eastern time) when I have to run off to my "real" job.

  2. I liked the excerpt, thank you.

  3. Thanks for the giveaway; I like the excerpt. :)

  4. Thanks. You can see much bigger free excerpts at (5 chapters pdf), or Amazon, or Barnes and Noble, or Smashwords, or Goodreads. Oh, and I forgot to mention the ebook version of Softlife is on sale for $0.99 during April.

  5. Thanks to everybody who's dropped by so far. (I'll be checking in again yet; I just wanted to make sure I didn't miss anybody.) And don't forget to enter for your shot at that gift card.

  6. Thanks again to host and guests, and good night to all. Back to my regular work schedule tomorrow, so I'd better get some sleep so I'll feel smart enough to do my job.

  7. Congrats on the tour and thanks for the chance to win :)

  8. Congrats on the new book and good luck on the book tour!

  9. I loved the excerpt this a great new book.

  10. Excellent excerpt! I really enjoyed reading it!

  11. Thanks for the kind words, all of you reviewers who came a little late to the party. And thanks, Jo Jones, for keeping the virtual lights on and doors open for them. (And for me--here I am two weeks later; guess I shouldn't talk about being late!)

  12. I really enjoyed reading the entire post today. This is a new author for me so thank you for the reveal!

    1. Glad you liked it. Thanks for visiting.


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