Thursday, August 13, 2015

Trial Run by Thomas Locke

So here's a little something about me you din't know... I read a lot of speculative fiction. That's right, I'm a total nerd. I do things like watch Doctor Who and devour 1000 page fantasy novels (I'm looking at you Brandon Sanderson).  Needless to say, I was excited to read Trial Run by Thomas Locke---

"Dr. Gabriella Speciale has assembled an international team of elite scientists with one goal in mind--to create and control out-of-body experiences that transcend the limits of time and space. Reese Clawson's mind-bending experiments aim to explode the boundaries of human consciousness--and annihilate the opposition in the process.

When a terrifying discovery and a string of failed tests threaten to dismantle both programs, the key to survival may reside in the mind of a gifted grad student whose unsettling dreams have thrust him into the center of a dangerous battle for control.

As the threads of perception and reality become tangled and time itself twists in unexpected directions, one warning remains clear: what you don't know can kill you."

I would say that the book mostly lived up my expectations. It was undoubtedly a fun and fast paced read.

The first few chapters of this book introduce the large cast of characters. There are a lot of characters and each one is important. It was a little daunting at first, trying to keep all the names/occupations of the characters in order. My suggestion is just to read slow. I promise things will start meshing and making more sense.

Science Fiction can be a hard genre. The author has to make the reader believe the unbelievable in their plot. This book relies heavily on science to support the ideas presented. There needs to be enough science to make the reader believe these events are plausible-- however too much just confuses, annoys and weighs down the reader.

Unfortunately I think that is where this book misses the mark. At first I was really enjoying the scientific explanations of the out-of-body-experiences. I thought they gave depth and believability to the book. However, by the time they were talking prions, I began skipping sections. It is never good when your reader tunes you out. The plot is strong enough to pull the reader along, even when the science begins to weigh you down. I think the book would have been much improved if some of the information was streamlined.

No doubt the author put a lot of time and research into the book. I thought the book well written (besides one instance when a character calls another "sport" three times in one page). Even with so many characters, they all seem developed and interesting. They build complex relationships and have multifaceted personalities. The book never goes too dark and is even humorous in places.

Trial Run leaves us with a lot of questions unanswered. I'm guessing Locke is saving those for the sequel. I would recommend the book to anybody looking for an adventurous, interesting read. The book is clean enough that it would be appropriate for  teenagers as well. If you are looking for a book to read on these dwindling late summer night pick this one up!

I received this book from Revell in exchange for my honest review.

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