CUBEBALL is a futuristic science fiction novel (90,000 words) that follows the life of Mickey Allen and his struggle to compete in the world's most popular sport, the fast-paced technologically enhanced snooker of the future. 3D holograph technology and enhanced players make for a game with chess-like battles and high stakes. Each team of 3 (player, strategist and comtech), competes on a world stage dominated by gambling, drugs and massive audiences.
Mickey, a cubeball player with a natural and unique talent, is a one-time national champion - the youngest ever. Disillusioned by an industry dominated by illegal business dealings and technological enhancements, Mickey spends ten years in refuge on Mars until his drug-fuelled life reaches a point of homeless destitution.
Without means of subsistence, Mickey looks to his estranged sister Riley, a success in her own right in the cubeball industry, to bail him out and fund his return to Earth. Their shared past holds betrayals that drove Mickey to leave the industry. After some caveats to lift him out of his destructive drug haze, he forms an unlikely union with business-savvy Riley as his comtech, and Ludwig as his strategist - a savant with an uncanny gift for seeing the perfection of Mickey's game, inspired by his ability to recall the music of Beethoven.
Together, Mickey's new team seeks to compete on the world stage, a global industry dominated by Mickey's nemesis - his unscrupulous former manager, Johnnie Draxma. Johnnie is the shadow that dominates Mickey's origins in the game and the betrayal that fuels his destructive habits.
Amongst high stakes and an audience of millions, Mickey must battle his own demons and those of his past, as he learns about truth, trust and friendship.
An adrenaline charged read!
Michael Leon's new novel, Cubeball creates a vivid and entertaining picture of the future of global sport. He re-invents snooker into a fast-paced, technologically enhanced game that is viewed by massive global audiences. I particularly enjoyed the colourful characters, who seemed to come alive off the page, as they competed in an industry dominated by gambling, rampant technology and drug abuse. One of my favourite books of the year! Christine Lister