"Adam wondered if it counted as a lie if the untruth was as boring as reality."It's easy to see the appeal of virtual reality. The chance to break from the monotony of real life, to be someone different, someone better, to experience something new and exciting and safe (since you can always log off when things are not to your liking). It can bring excitement and fulfillment, fill in the gaps and the void in your own life. And it can be done easily, without hard work, without sacrifice - new possibilities right at your fingertips, just waiting for you. Until some day it all goes horribly wrong. Enter The Plagiarist!"It may be erased,all that is written. Destroyed,all that's created."The Plagiarist, a short novella that you can finish in about an hour, is a nicely written piece of sci-fi, a genre that holds a special place in my heart (a warm and fuzzy one - the genre, not the heart; it'd be a dangerous condition if my heart were warm and fuzzy). It does come with a twist in the end that is very easy to spot soon after the beginning, but it did not spoil the enjoyment of the story for me in the slightest; on the contrary, it made me anxiously wait for the inevitable ending, building up more suspense than I would have had if I had no clue about what's coming.The plot is simple. In a not-so-remote future, Adam lives a double life - one as a successful writer, another as a obsessed user of a 'sim' - a computer-created virtual reality made by humans for scientific uses. It's like living in The Sims, honestly. Adam is not a scientist, however, but a titular plagiarist - he memorizes the texts of literary masterpieces written in this virtual reality by its inhabitants who have no idea that they are not 'technically' real - and then publishes the works in the 'real' world. Sweet life, no? Actually, no. Adam becomes so obsessed with his life in the virtual reality that he neglects the rest of his life including his online girlfriend, Amanda. But apparently virtual worlds that are so easy to inhabit are also very easy to delete. ...(Some virtual reality games are very cute, apparently.)I've recently read a book the protagonist of which goes through a slow cycle of personal destruction (Tana French's In The Woods), and seeing Adam's life completely taken over and diminishing under the influence of virtual reality reminded me of that one a bit. Adam is an interesting character to read about - both sympathetic and pathetic at the same time. He is very lonely and isolated, and acts in the ways that just increase this loneliness and isolation. His unhealthy obsession with something that is not 'real' is fascinating and almost hits close to home - after all, this is not that far of a stretch from the experience we have here, on Goodreads, or anywhere online, as a matter of fact - having an online persona that may or may not resemble your own self, creating relationships and friendships with people that we don't know in 'real life', all that. At times, the reality we create for ourselves feels just like that - a reality."The world that isn'tBecomes simply that once more,And all is gray ash."I liked the way this book was written -it flows easily and effortlessly, with events smoothly moving forward and just enough description to enrich the story but not enough to become overwhelming. There is a classic sci-fi feel to the tone of the story, which I liked very much. 4 stars!