Geo's Reviews > Impact

Impact by Douglas Preston
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's review
Apr 30, 2011

liked it
bookshelves: brain-candy, reviewed
Read from April 30 to May 07, 2011

So, I need to preface this with a statement about why I read. Reading is like watching a movie. The intent, generally, is to escape. Find an alternate reality, preferably one that isn't too close to the current reality, to exist inside for a little while to distract from the reality I'm trying to escape. The net effect of that is that the principle criteria for determining whether a book is going to pass muster with me is whether or not it is able to keep me engaged, forget where I am and let the world it is describing creep in enough to allow me to "let go" and just drift along in its warm embrace.

The essence of that statement is that, even mediocre writing, combined with my own ability to allow myself to be transported, will allow me to enjoy what would otherwise be rather droll and not enjoyable. Thus, I have come up with a qualifier to use for books that don't really engage my logical brain much, but simply transport me, and let me float along, without necessarily really making me think much, or test my knowledge, or make me learn, or ... well, challenge me. I call those books "Brain Candy".

This book is brain candy. Everything else I say has to be taken with that premise understood first. The writing is ok, no big words or structures that made me think. It seems to have been well edited, and there wasn't really anything that interrupted the flow of the story.

The characters were fairly canned, with a couple strong female roles, which I always appreciate. The science and technology aspects of the book were... well, ok, so that part I really couldn't suspend disbelief all that well. But by the time those elements came in, I was already engaged, and just sort of floated past the parts that really couldn't pass close scientific examination.

Having read the backflap intro, I was thinking "oh cool, another brain candy meteor story". I like meteors. My current writing effort involves one. Maybe I just thought "this will be research" or something. Who knows, but it ended up (spoiler alert) not being meteors. They were FAKE meteors. I won't dwell on it, so I don't really spoil anything. Suffice to say I was duped.

The flow was decent, the ending rushed. Overall... meh. But yeah, brain candy. It didn't take too much of my time, and now I'm moving on.

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