WAS VIRTUAL KILLING JUST THE BEGINNING?
When eminent psychiatrist Dr Liz Sullivan is found dead in her bed, suspicion falls on local gamer and YouTube celebrity Jaden ‘JD’ Dodds. Did he target her because of her anti-gaming views and the work she undertook to expose the dangers of playing online games? And what was her connection with Valiant, an independent game manufacturer about to hit the big time, and its volatile boss?
Judith Burton and Constance Lamb team up once more to defend JD when no one else is on his side. But just because he makes a living killing people on screen doesn’t mean he’d do it in real life. Or does it?
Another thought-provoking courtroom drama from the acclaimed author of the Burton & Lamb series.
Publisher: Lightning Books
Format: Ebook (June) and Paperback (5 August 2021)
The Midas Game – was virtual killing just the beginning?
by Abi Silver
Over the last 18 months, the number of people playing online games has gone through the roof and profits have doubled, tripled, even quadrupled for the companies developing them. People who would never have considered gaming as a pastime have found themselves dipping a toe in and those who dabbled occasionally have become regular players.
It’s largely been fuelled by the isolation associated with the stay-at-home directives meted out across the globe, although some would argue that the products were evolving and would have attracted a wider audience, in any event. Whatever the reason, enthusiasts laud it as an opportunity to showcase how gaming can bring communities together and enhance friendships.
I wrote The Midas Game entirely during the pandemic, but before I knew of the statistics I’ve just set out or how they would be used to normalise gaming as a social activity and bring it well and truly into the mainstream. Would I have written my story differently, if I had known that more people believed gaming could promote relationships in a positive way and ease loneliness? Absolutely not.
Readers would still have been introduced to Dr Liz Sullivan (the deceased), a dedicated doctor who was keen to help patients (mostly young men) addicted to gaming. And would also have spent time with Jaden (JD) Dodds, an enthusiastic gamer and YouTuber, who tutors his followers on all the best moves across a variety of games and with Luke Smith, the creative genius of a game designer, whose love for the industry only just overtakes his fear of his overbearing boss, who wants to see Esports in the next Olympic Games. And you would certainly have heard from the usually reticent Dr Tony Williams, who explains the behavioural techniques employed by manufacturers to keep us all gaming.
Of course, there’s room for some old favourites also. Judith Burton and Constance Lamb are in fine form and delighted to be removed from the scrutiny of the cameras which they had to endure in The Rapunzel Act. Judith even defies her reputation and has a go at online gaming herself, purely for ‘research purposes’ of course, and Greg is back on the scene, helping out with some of the technological aspects of the case.
I’d like to think, though, that the recent explosion of gaming will mean that even more of my readers have personal knowledge of the attractions and pitfalls of playing and will be able to form their own informed view on whether ‘virtual killing was just the beginning’.
My thanks to Amber of Midas PR for the invitation and place on the tour.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Abi Silver was born in Leeds and is a lawyer by profession. She lives in Hertfordshire with her husband and three sons. Her first courtroom thriller featuring the legal duo Judith Burton and Constance Lamb, The Pinocchio Brief, was published by Lightning Books in 2017 and was shortlisted for the Waverton Good Read Award. The Aladdin Trial, featuring the same legal team, was published in 2018, followed by The Cinderella Plan in 2019.