Wednesday, August 31

Book Review: Wake

Title: Wake

Author: Robert J. Sawyer

Pages: 330

My Rating: 7.75/10

Summary: Catlin Decter is young, pretty, feisty, a genus at math - and blind Still, she can surf the net with the best of them, following its complex paths clearly in her mind. When a Japanese researcher develops a new signal-processing implant that might give her sight, she jumps at the chance, flying to Tokyo for the operation. But Catlin's brain long ago co-opted her primary visual cortex to help her navigate online. So once the implant is activated, it's not the visual world but rather the landscape of the World Wide Web that explores into her consciousness, spreading out all around her in a riot of colours and shapes. While exploring this amazing realm, she discovers something - some other - lurking in the background. And it's getting smarter.

What I liked/disliked about the book: This was an interesting and different science fiction story, especially compared to other books I've read in the genre, which heavily focus on alien races or advanced species. This one focused on artificial intelligence and its impact on society or at least that's what the ending of the book set the reader up for.

I think the author did a fantastic job at creating the awaking of the A.I. It's what grabbed my attention to the book, and hooked me in. There isn't a lot of detail about it, but the author gives you enough information so you're wanting more. And there is some interesting parallels with other stories and sub plots, like with ape, which is setting the story up for future plots in the next books of the series. I also found it to be well researched with the various technology and scientific advancements it was tied into the story nicely, and technological terms didn't feel overwhelming when it was written in the book. I think the telling of what devices, searches or online applications that were being used could have been toned down a bit, as it being constantly written in felt respective, but the author did manage to tie all of it it into the story nicely.

Although I did like the subplots with the story, I do wish they were more connected to the story as a whole, I can see where the author plans on going, but right now there seems to be almost three separate stories going on, which have similarities, but haven't come together yet. I also wasn't a fan of the young adult sub-plots - high school drama dances, boys etc. It helps develop Catlin as a character and she does have some great development throughout the book but, I could have done without some of the high school drama (ie the dance), for me it was just filler and I wanted to get back to the AI plot line and learn more about it and how it will affect Catlin and the world around her.

Overall a good read, I'm looking forward to the next book in the series, it was a good sci-fi read, and as well as a good young adult book.

Would I recommend it to read: I would, the book would work for both young adult audience as well as science fiction fans. It has properties both audiences would like, and the story line is very interesting.

What to read next: The other two books in the WWW trilogy - Watch and Wonder.

Challenges: 11 in 11, 100+ Challenge, 2011 Countdown Challenge, Canadian Reading Challenge V, Futeristic/Sci-Fi Challenge


  1. I like the sound of this book, and have actually heard of this one before. It sounds like teen drama aside, that this was a really interesting read. It's not my normal genre, but I would be willing to take a chance on it, especially now, since it has your seal of approval! This was a great and well-rounded review, and I appreciated it. Thanks, Jules!

  2. I haven't read any of his books yet, but I'd like to. I heard him at a book reading some years ago and really enjoyed that as well. In theory, I mean to finish some series before I start into new ones...but I'm constantly being tempted anyhow!

  3. Ziblee - Yes, the bit of teen drama aside, it is an interesting read. It's a good book to dip into the Sci-Fi genre.

    Buried in Print - He's a good author, and nice guy in person. I also like to finish series before I start new ones, but alas, I never follow that one. The series is also a good choice for books for the Canadian Reading Challenge V.