One of many great articles that you can find each month in The Big Thrill!
In Michael Stevens's Fortuna, Stanford computer science major Jason Lind, longing for escape from his mundane existence, signs up to play Fortuna, an online role-playing game set in Renaissance Florence.
From the first, fateful mouse click, Jason tumbles into the vibrant, lush, and anonymous world of Fortuna. Swept up in this highly complex, highly addictive game of fame, fortune, and power, Jason quickly transitions from casual gamer to compulsive player.
What started as a great escape may be anything but, because in the world of Fortuna, it's not how you play the game; it's if you survive.
"Wild and addicting! I couldn't tear my eyes from Michael Stevens's masterpiece, a blend of high-tech computer games, gangsters, and medieval Florence that rivals a Steve Berry thriller for chill-inducing fun."
--Shane Gericke, national best-selling author of Cut to the Bone
"Welcome to the game. Is it a game? Or is it RL (real life)? Is there a clear distinction, or does one bleed into the other? Jason Lind must call on all of his incredible intellectual gifts to determine which intrigues and threats are 'in game' and which are RL. His life depends on it. Fortuna is a breakneck thriller unlike any you've ever read."
--D.P. Lyle, Edgar Award nominee and Macavity Award-winning author of Stress Fracture
Michael Stevens began his writing career in high school as a music columnist for the Vallejo Times Herald, his hometown newspaper.
After graduating from the University of California at Berkeley as an English major, Michael served two years in the U.S. Army's Berlin Brigade, then began a career in high-tech marketing, first as a writer and later as a creative director and Silicon Valley ad agency executive. Concurrently, he managed the technical development and marketing of two successful software products. At present, Michael is a contributing editor for several high-profile web sites in the technology arena.
In addition to writing, Michael Stevens is a serious amateur musician who has produced four CDs. He lives in Berkeley, California, and at an undisclosed location in Second Life.
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