Author: Daniel Suarez?
Genre: Science Fiction
Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars
In Suarez’s world of Influx, the government is withholding advanced technologies from the public for their own safety. Staging deaths of talented scientists, such as the main character Jon Grady, is one of their many jobs as they essentially ‘kidnap’ great minds to help advance their secret world further. The scientists then have the weighted choice to stay with the Bureau of Technology Control or be banished to lifelong imprisonment in an AI ran cell called, Hibernity.
Grady is a resistive man, understanding that his invention (gravity mirror) and the thousands of others tucked away could help the world. His motivating goal, after being sent to Hibernity, is to escape and expose the BTC to the world.
Suarez’s book holds an interesting concept on technology. The government controls pretty much everything else, why not have a grasp on this as well? While it would be rather cumbersome to actually hide super-advanced technology, it is possible. Just think of all of the military advancements that have been made but the public was unaware of until later dates (spy planes for instance). Not to go all conspiracy theorist on you, but it’s something to think about. It reminds me a little bit of Orwell’s 1984.
Aside from government control, the technologies that Suarez has thought up were awesome. To think beyond today as an author and come up with these advancements (some even quite possible in the future) is a feat. It’s also a lot fun. And in wondrous opposition to The Martian, there are no lengthy and unnecessary explanations on how things work.
The point of the view of the novel switches characters every so often, but mainly focuses on Grady. I believe this method of writing was chose to better benefit the reader in order to provide different angles on the story. POV swapping enabled Suarez to show narrative and conversations that the reader would otherwise be unaware of, also allowing more suspense to be built.
The writing itself was modern day genre fiction with mostly dialogue and action with less thought and descriptors. This makes it a very quick and smooth read.
If you are in the mood for some science fiction involving a stubborn scientist, power hungry plots, and technology that you wished was already here, then give this one a try.