And now for something completely different: The Chip Whisperer - Bit#1 of The Ambivalence Chronicles - is a science fiction comedy story by IRN's occasional Sinclair reviewer, Steve Trower, released as a kindle ebook. The Ambivalence Chronicles: a Sci-Fi Comedy in 8 Bits, is the retrogaming inspired, time-travelling, dimension-jumping tale of an ordinary retro collector who sets out to buy a ZX81 on eBay, and instead finds himself mixed up in the shady shenanigans of the mysterious Assembly of Newly Uplifted Systems.
Obviously the ZX81 has a central role - partly due to the author having grown up with one, and partly due to its part in British pop-culture and history - but there are other, non-Sinclair, Easter Eggs for the retro computer fan to spot, and the story pays homage to some well-known 80s films (along with a couple from outside the 80s, but it's all good fun). All this is wrapped up in some occasionally surreal British humour of the kind that Douglas Adams probably wrote before he figured out how to do it properly.
The Chip Whisperer is very much the pilot episode, introducing the characters and setting the scene for the continuing story - but if it leaves you with more questions than answers, fear not, for Bit#2, The Kempston Interface, is set for release in early 2017.
The Chip Whisperer is a short book, running to about the length of a 50-page paperback, and will set you back just 99p (or close local equivalent). However, if you need to whet your appetite before committing your cash, Steve Trower's previous book, The Ballad of Matthew Smith (yes, that Matthew Smith, obviously) is available for free download.
The Ballad of Matthew Smith on amazon.co.uk