Thursday, March 30, 2017
Review: Version Control
By Dexter Palmer
Genre Adult Science Fiction
Rebecca feels like something just isn't right. Her world, her life, the president on TV. Nothing feels right and it's not just that she's still grieving the loss of her son two years ago. Her husband, a brilliant Physicist is working on a invention he calls the casualty violation device (a time machine but don't call it that in front of him). He's close to success but he may have already succeeded.
Nothing is as it should be; everything is upside down.
This was another Tournament of Books read but one I kind of wanted to check out anyway. I listened to this one on audio and always wonder how that affects my opinion. When someone else is reading in different voices and intonations than you might it skews your perspective a bit. And it was loooong! 25 hours or something like that. In print form it's about 500 pages.
And that leads me to my biggest problem with it. It didn't need to be that long. There was a bunch of little details that were completely unnecessary. And all these details seemed to be thrown in to make the book feel more like a story. Without them, it felt like reading a research paper. That's not to say there wasn't a story, there was, just a story bogged down by science. The characters would have these conversations to explain things but it just made me zone out. I didn't really care how the machine worked or didn't work. I'm a reader, not a scientist, I don't need to know every little detail.
As for the characters, I hated, downright loathed, Phillip. He was a freaking machine. He acted so un-human that for a while I actually thought maybe he wasn't going to be human. There were other characters that I had suspicions about too but I never really got an answer...just another thing that bugged me.
This is making it sound like I totally hated the book and I didn't. Despite all the science and the length I was never bored. I wanted to know what was happening and how things would wrap up and I was satisfied with the ending if not in love with it.
It was an interesting read with plenty going on to think about. I liked the near future aspects and the character interactions. I liked that there were character interactions. This book could have easily fallen heavy on the story side but managed to be about people too. It made me think about the tech world we live in and wonder if things haven't gotten a bit out of hand and I think, maybe, that's what the author wanted.
Should you read it.
Can't say I'd recommend this one necessarily but I wouldn't outright tell you to avoid it either. I'll let you decide. ;)