Wake by Robert J. Sawyer
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Caitlin Decter is young, pretty, feisty, a genius at math, and blind. When she receives an implant to restore her sight, instead of seeing reality she perceives the landscape of the World Wide Web-where she makes contact with a mysterious consciousness existing only in cyberspace.
I saw Wake on the shelves a year ago and always intended to 'pick it up next time.' When I finally did go searching for it a few days ago, I find that not only is the second book available, but the third is out in hardcover as well. So... I bought the first two and promised myself that I will purchase the third when it is available in paperback. Hopefully my memory serves me better this time around and I actually do pick it up when it comes out. (And not years later.)
Wake follows a few characters and events and, while not all interact with each other, they are tied together in other ways. I am sure this will become more important later in the series, and I am interested in seeing how it all fits together. Robert J. Sawyer does an amazing job of connecting the reader to the story. I could not put this book down until I finished - and that really didn't take long at all. It is wonderful to find a science fiction novel that is perfectly science fiction. It's intriguing and full of wondrous ideas that are explained in such a way that is easy to understand and isn't overly technical.
I often found myself considering an idea within the book, and... seeing things in a way I had not before. (And totally staring off into space like a moron.) It's really great when a book can do this, and it does not occur often enough. It was amusing, too, in more than one sense. The main character, Caitlin, was funny and intelligent, and her little puns and jokes made me smile if not laugh outright. The writing style worked well for this too, and it never came across as silly or unintended.
Fun Fact: This is one of the few books I've needed to use a dictionary to find the meaning of a word. Usually I can discern the meaning based on how it is used in a sentence - I have been reading since I was a young child and like to think I am beyond using a dictionary. This time, though... not a clue. On the first page too -- Inchoate. Never seen the word before and, even in the sentence... Made me feel very smart.
We all need to be brought down a peg or two once in a while, I suppose.
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