Haterz is a novel which manages to encapsulate everything that makes the world of the internet today an annoying and disgusting place. Its ability to capture the zeitgeist is admirable, as in many ways this novel serves as a snapshot of some of the more insane moments of our online culture. However, this is a double edged sword, as the novel itself and its protagonist can often become just as annoying as that which he seeks to destroy at times. Gaze not into the abyss, and all that rot.
The central character is Dave. Dave is a normal, although deeply unlikeable person, but nearly everyone else around him is even worse, so I guess it averages out. One day, fed up of her inane selfies and online chatter, Dave kills his best friend’s girlfriend. From there, he gets drawn into a larger web of murder against all those who infest the internet in the worst way.
Haterz is partially driven by the same sense of anger and escapism that made the satirical film God Bless America possible. It seems perfectly reasonable to get so upset with some aspects of the modern world that you just want to kill everyone some days, within the confines of your own imagination. In that way, Dave is meant to just be like all of us, although we can all be pretty annoying at times, making Dave annoying too.
Haterz is a definite satire, meaning that it captures and mocks a certain concept and kind of person and comments on them by drawing them to their logical conclusion. In that way, the novel is a success, as most people who have spent time on the internet will understand or relate to some aspect of the novel, and probably find it funny.
I personally feel that works like Transmetropolitan have previously managed to capture the same fears about the future of technology while still being more entertaining than this novel, but at the same time, this book is a pretty good insight into how we are progressing as a culture online. That in itself doesn’t make it entertaining at all times, but perhaps it works as a good cautionary tale.