Peter Carey\u2019s latest novel Amnesia is an ambitious story negotiating a critical line between Australia and America in today\u2019s technology-driven world. It follows down-and-out Australian journalist Felix Moore as he\u2019s commissioned to write the sympathetic story of Gaby Baillieux: a hacker who has released a \u2018bug\u2019 into prison systems resulting in a political scramble to save her from being handed over to The States.\r\n\r\nPeter Carey's latest novel 'Amnesia', published by Knopf.\r\n\r\nAmnesia reeks of post-modernism, from its cyber-freak fear-mongering to its dry, masculine voice and its almost comical scenes involving \u2018poor Felix\u2019. Felix takes on the task of telling Gaby\u2019s story, and starts by hypothesizing about the women deep in her past; Carey makes us go so far back that it becomes irrelevant.\r\n\r\nThat\u2019s the main problem with Amnesia as a whole: much of the book is irrelevant in regards to what Carey is attempting to achieve. It\u2019s made clear in the blurb that Carey is exploring Australian\/American political relations in light of \u2018cyber warfare\u2019. But what follows is a man writing a book about a man writing a book.\r\n\r\nGaby herself doesn\u2019t properly appear in the novel until half-way through, and when she finally steps on to the page the story is suddenly lifted with an edgy and youthful voice, a contemporary woman who claims to be the first female hacker. Alas, she doesn\u2019t stay for long.\r\n\r\nCarey artfully weaves Gaby\u2019s voice with her mother\u2019s, each telling the same story from different perspectives while Felix intermittently steps in and struggles to play catch-up, trying to write history while it\u2019s happening. This is the highlight of the novel, and unfortunately, Carey doesn\u2019t satisfy. He keeps Gaby at a distance, letting her tell her own story in her own words but not enough to explore anything that is described in the blurb of the book.\r\n\r\nAuthor Peter Carey himself.\r\n\r\nWhat Carey manages to do well, is write an intriguing voice in Gaby (albeit splashed with cringe-inducing outdated phrases like \u2018freakazoid\u2019) and to capture the concept of metanarrative: Felix represents the persona of the writer, negotiating between fact and story to craft something creative while questioning the truth and becoming lost somewhere in the thick of it.\r\n\r\nWhile there are some fantastic lines, some moments of great character and some very rich settings, Amnesia attempts too much by setting up a \u2018Battle of Brisbane\u2019 metaphor and failing to let Australia and America really butt heads. His aim is as clear as the red, white and blue interior covers of the book. And yet the story misses the mark by a great margin by distracting the reader from Gaby\u2019s intriguing cyber-feminism speckled story in lieu of a dull journalist with self-victimising ego-issues.\r\n\r\nAmnesia was published by Knopf in January 2015. It's available now.