Was there some reason the book is set in the specific time period instead of in the present-day? I kept wondering if there was some advancement in technology that would've changed the story if it were set today instead of just a few years ago. Or maybe SK just kept the book placed in the time period he wrote it in. Computers are faster than a few years ago and cell phone functionalities are greater, but without bringing foreign affairs and political figures into play, I can't think of much else a writer would have to change when presenting a book as taking place now or a few years ago. Not a criticism of the book, just a question.