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Victoria Reads Books

Global citizen, adventurer, ponderer. Lover of coffee, books, and the Oxford comma. Infected by wanderlust, enchanted by stories. Might occasionally be a photo blog.

Currently reading

Jane Austen
Progress: 230/412 pages
Le Petit Prince
Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
Eight Great Comedies
Sylvan Barnet, Morton Berman, William Burton
The Longman Anthology of Short Fiction, Compact Edition: Stories and Authors in Context
Dana Gioia, R.S. Gwynn
Anna Karenina
Leo Tolstoy, Louise Maude, Aylmer Maude, E.B. Greenswood
Prey - Michael Crichton I purchased this book from a sale at Zellers along with 'Hide and Seek' by James Patterson (which I haven't read yet) in a 2/$5 deal + 10% off with an SPC card. Being familiar with Patterson's works, I took a bit of a chance with this one, having, well, never really heard of it.

The brief blurb on the back cover reminded me of themes used in many other science fiction movies and books, with out-of-control, replicating technology. However, the main difference is that with these is that, instead of being robots, these are a swarm of "microscopic machines".

This book is about a 'stay-at-home' dad, Jack, who is called in to his wife's workplace to help them solve a problem. There is a swarm on the loose that adapts and replicates quickly, and is killing off living organisms in the desert. There is also his wife, who he believes to be having an affair, and Ricky, the guy in charge who seems remarkably unhelpful (and irritating) in such a dire situation.

One thing I have to comment on is that this book isn't remarkably fast-paced. There are interludes of information about nanotechnology and other science-y things that might not be everybody's cup of tea. It took a very long time to set the stage, and the 'real' action doesn't start until about halfway through the book. The first parts focus on Jack's domestic life and his musings about his wife's possible affair. The second half of the book is much quicker paced.

Another thing is, I didn't really find this book "frightening". Sure, the idea of out-of-control technology is sobering, but there were only a few parts that I found really creepy.

Overall, it wasn't a bad read. The concept is really fascinating, and I enjoyed the action scenes a lot. I don't know much about the scientific accuracy of the book, but nevertheless, it was a decent read in terms of the storytelling. I thought the intro was pretty good as well.

Entertainment value: 3.5/5
Writing quality: 3.5/5
Characters (development & depth): 4/5
Plot: 3/5