Felice's Reviews > The Technologists

The Technologists by Matthew Pearl
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's review
Mar 08, 2012

it was ok

Matthew Pearl has made a career out of capitalizing on authors we love. He’s the ultimate success story in fan fiction. In his novels: The Dante Club, The Poe Shadow and The Last Dickens Pearl build on our general knowledge of the lives of Dante, Poe and Dickens to become enjoyable What If mysteries that allow us to visit a favorite writer. However Pearl’s latest novel, The Technologists doesn’t have that classics author hook that has served him so well. I guess in that regard it is his first stand alone.

The Technologists is about Marcus Mansfield. He is a survivor of years in a Confederate prison trying to adjust to civilian life in Boston. Mansfield is a loner with a gift for invention. By night he works on his designs and by day he is a student at the newly founded MIT. Guess what? His inventions are ahead of their time.
When Boston experiences an attack of seemingly otherworldly proportions the local police are baffled. Mansfield and some of his fellow students decide to investigate on their own. These new kids on the block, first generation American geeks are up against a fiendish foe and the respected and well heeled Harvard crew that’s on the same case. That’s gumption at work my friends.
The Technologists has its moments; specifically, Pearl’s use of the science of the times to battle steampunk-esque villainy and his convincing portrait of Boston in 1868. Good thing as these two elements are the heart of this boys own adventure novel. The failure in The Technologists is in the drama. There isn’t any.
Oh well.
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Comments (showing 1-5 of 5) (5 new)

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message 1: by Vanessa (new)

Vanessa Felice, is there anything you haven't read? This is the second review of yours I stumbled upon today and this book ended up not going on the pile. I caved and added Enchantments to my to read list because, Romanov Fever.

Felice No. I don't admit this to many people but there is nothing that I haven't read. You have read one of my favorite, favorite, favorite books, East of Eden!

message 3: by Vanessa (new)

Vanessa East of Eden! Sqeeee! I love John Steinbeck. Pretty much my favorite author ever.

If I could just figure out a way to quit this working business, I could compete with you. Maybe.

Felice My secret is swim meets! My 3 children all swim and the meets are l-o-n-g. It's hours of your attendence interspersed with 5 minutes here and there of watching your kids swim.

message 5: by Vanessa (new)

Vanessa My dog (whose nickname sometimes is "poo miser" which is probably self-explanatory) is why I listen to so many podcasts.

(but not books on tape which I can't get into for some reason)

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