This Perfect Day / Ira Levin
Synopsis – In the future, a supercomputer controls civilization. The supercomputer decides everybody’s names, schooling, and careers. All eat the same, all play the same. All are content, cooperative, and drugged into compliance. But now and then a few individuals glimpse through the unity fog and wonder about a life without the lock-step conformity. What life was like before the supercomputer, when people where violent and selfish and sick. And now and then a few of these sick-minded individuals break away to try to destroy the supercomputer.
Reaction – The first third of this book was a bit dull with mechanical writing and shallow characters, even considering everybody was drugged. An odd preoccupation with sex ran throughout the book. A child sex scene, creepy and awkward, disrupted the flow of the story. Further on, an unexpected male on female rape scene also didn’t fit the story, and just added to the general misogyny reflected in the writing. Aside from those flaws, the book picked up in its action and intrigue just before the half-way point, and presented unexpected and intelligent questions about the meaning and value of freedom and conformity. An excellent premise with several exciting plot twists.
Recommendation – This hit and miss book renewed my will to live.
Plague Zone / David Wellington
Synopsis – A family man decides to be a hero after the zombie apocalypse. Not by destroying all the zombies, buy by destroying just one of them – the one who took out his wife and child. And if he has to annihilate a few extraneous zombies in the process, well, that’s the price he has to pay. Now if he can only escape the little pocket of civilization he was lucky enough to stumble into, and immerse himself into the zombie masses to find and kill one particular undead brain-eater…
Reaction – The characters were a bit hung-ho and implausible, and the revenge motivation was eye-rollingly ridiculous. Nonetheless, this was a rip-roaringly exciting zombie apocalypse story. Plenty of walking dead suspense and action. Gruesome and creepy zombie descriptions and edge-of-your-seat escape scenes. A must read for zombie lovers.
Recommendation – This book renewed my will to live.