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THE MOVEMENT

THE TIME CORRECTOR SERIES: BOOK 2

From the Time Corrector Series series , Vol. 2

A highly complex middle-chapter installment of an intricate SF/fantasy that requires sharp attention.

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A celebrity entrepreneur and inventor in the near future confronts a masked enemy, time-travel paradoxes, and historical rewrites in Datta’s sequel to The Winding (2021).

This series installment begins years after the first, focusing again on 21st-century celebrity Vincent Abajian, a scientific genius whose Quantum World company leads the planet in technological progress. He has a secret, genetic “time corrector” ability that allows him to enter a time/space warp called “the core” and shape the past, present, and future. In the world of the novel, “time turbulence” storms occasionally strike, and one such disaster robbed Vincent of his 1990s boarding school love, musician Akane. In the previous book, Vince rediscovered temporary bliss with an alternate version of Akane named Emika, but the relationship soured; Emika was pregnant, but Vince, whose memory was later wiped, isn’t currently aware of this. The long-lost Akane returns to his life, but Vincent’s idyll is interrupted by lingering memories of Emika and her baby. Meanwhile, Quantum World is introducing new mind-data interface helmets that promise a treatment for Alzheimer’s disease and downloadable access to many skills. In addition, masked marauder/hacker Vandal starts launching attacks against Vincent and his loved ones. Datta offers a book that’s most likely to appeal to attentive fans of the first series installment. For example, he further complicates the already complex nonlinear structure of The Winding, with the plot unfolding via multiple first-person perspectives in multiple timelines, sometimes recapping the same incidents from different points of view. Numerous footnotes attempt to clarify points or highlight foreshadowing in the last book, but newcomers may still find this volume very difficult to follow. In a preface, the author explains that a sojourn in Japan heavily influenced the material here, and, indeed, readers will find that the work has a very strong anime flavor, with mecha combat suits, Japanese dialogue (partially translated), unresolvable romantic sentiments, and moments of mysticism (the titan Chronos and his rebellious Greek god-children have stakes in the proceedings). Finally, an open ending offers a revelation of a not-so-surprising master villain.

A highly complex middle-chapter installment of an intricate SF/fantasy that requires sharp attention.

Pub Date: Feb. 1, 2023

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: 504

Publisher: Bublish, Inc.

Review Posted Online: Dec. 28, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2023

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  • New York Times Bestseller

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DEVOLUTION

A tasty, if not always tasteful, tale of supernatural mayhem that fans of King and Crichton alike will enjoy.

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  • New York Times Bestseller

Are we not men? We are—well, ask Bigfoot, as Brooks does in this delightful yarn, following on his bestseller World War Z(2006).

A zombie apocalypse is one thing. A volcanic eruption is quite another, for, as the journalist who does a framing voice-over narration for Brooks’ latest puts it, when Mount Rainier popped its cork, “it was the psychological aspect, the hyperbole-fueled hysteria that had ended up killing the most people.” Maybe, but the sasquatches whom the volcano displaced contributed to the statistics, too, if only out of self-defense. Brooks places the epicenter of the Bigfoot war in a high-tech hideaway populated by the kind of people you might find in a Jurassic Park franchise: the schmo who doesn’t know how to do much of anything but tries anyway, the well-intentioned bleeding heart, the know-it-all intellectual who turns out to know the wrong things, the immigrant with a tough backstory and an instinct for survival. Indeed, the novel does double duty as a survival manual, packed full of good advice—for instance, try not to get wounded, for “injury turns you from a giver to a taker. Taking up our resources, our time to care for you.” Brooks presents a case for making room for Bigfoot in the world while peppering his narrative with timely social criticism about bad behavior on the human side of the conflict: The explosion of Rainier might have been better forecast had the president not slashed the budget of the U.S. Geological Survey, leading to “immediate suspension of the National Volcano Early Warning System,” and there’s always someone around looking to monetize the natural disaster and the sasquatch-y onslaught that follows. Brooks is a pro at building suspense even if it plays out in some rather spectacularly yucky episodes, one involving a short spear that takes its name from “the sucking sound of pulling it out of the dead man’s heart and lungs.” Grossness aside, it puts you right there on the scene.

A tasty, if not always tasteful, tale of supernatural mayhem that fans of King and Crichton alike will enjoy.

Pub Date: June 16, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-9848-2678-7

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Del Rey/Ballantine

Review Posted Online: Feb. 9, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 2020

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DARK MATTER

Suspenseful, frightening, and sometimes poignant—provided the reader has a generously willing suspension of disbelief.

A man walks out of a bar and his life becomes a kaleidoscope of altered states in this science-fiction thriller.

Crouch opens on a family in a warm, resonant domestic moment with three well-developed characters. At home in Chicago’s Logan Square, Jason Dessen dices an onion while his wife, Daniela, sips wine and chats on the phone. Their son, Charlie, an appealing 15-year-old, sketches on a pad. Still, an undertone of regret hovers over the couple, a preoccupation with roads not taken, a theme the book will literally explore, in multifarious ways. To start, both Jason and Daniela abandoned careers that might have soared, Jason as a physicist, Daniela as an artist. When Charlie was born, he suffered a major illness. Jason was forced to abandon promising research to teach undergraduates at a small college. Daniela turned from having gallery shows to teaching private art lessons to middle school students. On this bracing October evening, Jason visits a local bar to pay homage to Ryan Holder, a former college roommate who just received a major award for his work in neuroscience, an honor that rankles Jason, who, Ryan says, gave up on his career. Smarting from the comment, Jason suffers “a sucker punch” as he heads home that leaves him “standing on the precipice.” From behind Jason, a man with a “ghost white” face, “red, pursed lips," and "horrifying eyes” points a gun at Jason and forces him to drive an SUV, following preset navigational directions. At their destination, the abductor forces Jason to strip naked, beats him, then leads him into a vast, abandoned power plant. Here, Jason meets men and women who insist they want to help him. Attempting to escape, Jason opens a door that leads him into a series of dark, strange, yet eerily familiar encounters that sometimes strain credibility, especially in the tale's final moments.

Suspenseful, frightening, and sometimes poignant—provided the reader has a generously willing suspension of disbelief.

Pub Date: July 26, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-101-90422-0

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Crown

Review Posted Online: May 3, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 2016

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