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Posted March 17, 2013
I really liked this book! Graham Smith lives in London and is a
I really liked this book!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Graham Smith lives in London and is an office messenger. He delivers mail and memos from office to office. He doesn't interact with anyone, and he doesn't speak. He hasn't spoken since he was a child. He counts the squares in the sidewalk when he walks home -- he never steps on cracks. He has a rigid set of procedures for doing everything. He appears Autistic, but he's not.
His perseverations are a defense mechanism that allow him to deal with a changing world -- A rapidly changing world. Streets can change their locations overnight. People disappear, and no one seems to miss them. New people appear, and everyone seems to know them. He's never sure that his address will be the same in the evening as it was in the morning.
Then one young woman goes out of her way to meet him. Her name is Annalise and she came all the way from America. She's from Boston. Duluth. Boise. She has long, black hair. She's a redhead. She's blond. She dyed her hair bright orange. He takes her luggage to his home. She's staying at a B&B. She's paranoid and stays in a large cardboard carton in an alley. She tells him he's being watched. Someone wants to kill him. She came to help.
He finds listening devices and cameras, hidden in his home. He destroys them. They're back, in the same locations, the next day.
There are no new Science Fiction concepts in this book, but the genius is the way the concepts are handled and resolved. The first third of the book is brilliant and the final scenes are very, very good. The author gets off track for a while in the middle. In particular, he tries to make a forced analogy with the theory of evolution that just does not work. Also, he goes into some weird details of genetics that don't hold up. Both of these scenes took me out of the story for a while, but the rest of the story is relentlessly good. The book would be much better, and a little shorter, if these sections were just dropped.
Still, this book is highly recommended!
Some notes: bear in mind that this takes place in London. Cell phones are called mobiles, elevators are lifts, the subway is the tube, etc.
Posted December 1, 2005
Posted June 8, 2011
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