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Posted July 29, 2010
The Thinking Person's Science Fiction
I always go in with a bit of trepidation when I read SF. Either it's good SF with mealy characterization or relationships, or it's great chemistry, but poor world building.
So color me pleasantly surprised when I picked up KS Augustin's book, IN ENEMY HANDS. The pace was brisk, the narrative intelligent and the characters.ooh, the characters.
These were real people. I could see them, touch them. More importantly, I could empathize with them.
Moon and Srin are scientists working for the Republic, an autocratic regime who knows how to hold on to its resources-even if they have to control them at the synaptic level.
The protagonists are working on stellar forming experiments, research so vital, the Republic will stop at nothing to get their results. Srin, a math genius without equal becomes Moon's research partner, but right from the start Moon realizes there is something strange about him.
To keep him under control, the Republic erases Srin's memory every two days. Just to see this scenario played out is reason enough to buy the book. You ache for Srin as he struggles to remember shadows of his past. Augustin nails this character so completely that you can't help but sympathize.
Moon is sharp yet compassionate. You can see her struggle with the moral dilemmas that are thrown at her. You understand her fear and why she is so conflicted to help Srin. I was glued to the outcome on whether she would free Srin from his chemical yoke. Augustin had me at the edge of my seat the whole time.
If you are a science fiction lover, you must read this book. And if you are a science fiction lover who is tired of cardboard characters, you must read this author. KS Augustin gets it right.
Finally, smart science fiction.
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