Petrik's Reviews > Recursion

Recursion by Blake Crouch
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it was amazing
bookshelves: owned-ebooks, favorites
Recommended to Petrik by: Emily (Books with Emily Fox)
Recommended for: sci-fi & Dark Matter fans

Recursion has become the first sci-fi standalone to be included in my favorite shelves.

As many readers probably did, my first experience with reading Crouch’s work was for Dark Matter. I was super impressed by it and after hearing that the author has a new sci-fi thriller that’s highly recommended for readers who loved Dark Matter gave me so much joy; it would be insane for me to not take a look at Recursion. Do note that taking a look at Crouch’s novel can be surmised as reading the novel non-stop until completion. This book was undoubtedly exceptional; it was so good that it made Dark Matter—which I loved and rated 4.5/5 stars—felt like a practice novel so that Crouch has the skill to unleash the full capacity of his brain towards the creation of this cleverly crafted insanity.

Two central characters drive the plot. The first main character is Barry Sutton, a cop that’s investigating the mysterious phenomenon dubbed as False Memory Syndrome (FMS)—a phenomenon that drives its victims insane with false memories of a life they never lived. The other main character, Helena Smith, is a neuroscientist that understands the importance of memory; she decides to dedicate her life to create a technology that could preserve any moment of the recipient’s memories. This is pretty much all I can say regarding the general premise. Reviewing Crouch’s book is not an easy task; there’s a huge limitation on how much of the plot I can talk about unless I risk spoiling something and I don’t want that. To avoid spoilers, I will say this: Recursion is a sci-fi thriller about memories and how precious they are in defining humanity and their sense of identity. Imbued inside this resonating theme was an addictive story about love, loss, ambition, redemption, and life.

“Life is nothing how he expected it would be when he was young and living under the delusion that things could be controlled. Nothing can be controlled. Only endured.”


When I started this book, I knew I would be thoroughly engaged by it and Crouch exceeded my high expectations brilliantly. Crouch outstandingly proved that he’s super capable of writing a fast-paced story that doesn’t neglect crucial characterizations. Dark Matter was thought-provoking and this book held similar philosophical discussions about life and choices but honestly speaking, Recursion resonated more with me because I believe that Crouch has improved as an author; his prose was extremely well-polished and the characters were more fleshed out. I truly didn’t expect this novel to be this evocative and large-scale. There were moments where I felt genuinely sad, terrified, and heart-warmed by what the characters went through. The poignant thought-provoking passages made me reflect on life; the gradual increase in stakes and scope that eventually became more destructive and global as the story progressed fully stole my attention cover to cover. I’ve been having difficulties in my life, it’s almost as if this book appeared at the right timing to brighten my mood by teaching me how to think better moving forward; I’m truly grateful for it.

“Life with a cheat code isn’t life. Our existence isn’t something to be engineered or optimized for the avoidance of pain. That’s what it is to be human—the beauty and the pain, each meaningless without the other.”


Recursion was relentlessly thrilling, unpredictable, and mind-blowing. Crouch’s narrative was utterly unputdownable, the harrowing events displayed were enormously impactful, and I absolutely loved every moment of reading this vivid magnificence. I can vouch with certainty that Recursion broke a new milestone for me by becoming the first sci-fi standalone to be included in my ‘favorites’ shelves with a full 5/5 stars rating. Read this breathtaking novel as soon as you can. Trust me, you won’t regret it.

Sidenote:
I heard Recursion is currently being planned for TV series adaptation by Netflix and I'm so excited for it!


You can order the book from: Book Depository (Free shipping)

You can find this and the rest of my reviews at Novel Notions
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Quotes Petrik Liked

Blake Crouch
“He thinks how it will be winter soon, and then another year gone by and another one on the chopping block, time flowing faster and faster. Life is nothing how he expected it would be when he was young and living under the delusion that things could be controlled. Nothing can be controlled. Only endured.”
Blake Crouch, Recursion

Blake Crouch
“There are so few things in our existence we can count on to give us the sense of permanence, of the ground beneath our feet. People fail us. Our bodies fail us. We fail ourselves. He's experienced all of that. But what do you cling to, moment to moment, if memories can simply change. What, then, is real? And if the answer is nothing, where does that leave us?”
Blake Crouch, Recursion

Blake Crouch
“Life with a cheat code isn't life. Our existence isn't something to be engineered or optimized for the avoidance of pain. That's what it is to be human - the beauty and the pain, each meaningless without the other.”
Blake Crouch, Recursion


Reading Progress

June 15, 2019 – Shelved
June 16, 2019 – Started Reading
June 17, 2019 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-30 of 30 (30 new)

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message 1: by Olga (new)

Olga I still haven't read any of his books, but now I'm interested! Great review as always. :)


Petrik Olga wrote: "I still haven't read any of his books, but now I'm interested! Great review as always. :)"

Thank you, Olga! This one was fantastic. Dark Matter and this is a must read imo! :)


message 3: by David's (new) - added it

David's Book Meanderings Sounds really interesting. I've been trying to add some thrillers to my tbr and I already like Sci fi so this is perfect. Thank you!


message 4: by Jody (new) - added it

Jody Awesome review, bro! :) I have this one coming up after Cameron Johnston's The Age of Tyranny duology.


message 5: by Chris (new)

Chris Berko Killer review. What other science fiction books are on your favorites shelf?


Petrik David wrote: "Sounds really interesting. I've been trying to add some thrillers to my tbr and I already like Sci fi so this is perfect. Thank you!"

You're welcome, David! I think this book will be a right fit for you, it's a fast read too; or feels like it. Give it a go! :)


Petrik Jody wrote: "Awesome review, bro! :) I have this one coming up after Cameron Johnston's The Age of Tyranny duology."

Thank you, bro! Ohh, I'm looking forward to your thoughts on that duology! I've heard good things about it! :)


message 8: by Petrik (last edited Jun 18, 2019 07:07PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Petrik Chris wrote: "Killer review. What other science fiction books are on your favorites shelf?"

Thanks, Chris! Ahh unfortunately, I don't have many sci-fi books on my favorites shelf. Right now there's only Recursion, Dark Age by Cixin Liu, and Red Rising Saga by Pierce Brown. There are other hybrid SFF books like Robert Jackson Bennett's books, The Poison Song by Jen Williams, and The Stone Sky by N.K. Jemisin, but other than that... nothing else.

I enjoyed plenty of sci-fi books though, I just have to broaden my reading of the genre because the quantity of my fantasy reads overwhelm my sci-fi reads by far! xD


message 9: by Roxane (new) - added it

Roxane Wow what a great review! I’m adding this to my tbr pile!


Petrik Roxane wrote: "Wow what a great review! I’m adding this to my tbr pile!"

Thanks, Roxane! Happy reading and I hope you'll enjoy it as much as I did! :)


message 11: by Hannah (new) - added it

Hannah Yay, I'm so happy you loved this! I really, really loved Dark Matter and so got this the day after it was released. It's sitting on my shelves, and I'm so excited to read it.


message 12: by Jody (new) - added it

Jody Thank you, bro! Ohh, I'm looking forward to your thoughts on that duology! I've..."

I've had the first book since Christmas. Was just waiting on the release of book 2 to get started. I have heard good things about it as well. I am really looking forward to this one. If I could just read a little faster. Lol! :)


Petrik Hannah wrote: "Yay, I'm so happy you loved this! I really, really loved Dark Matter and so got this the day after it was released. It's sitting on my shelves, and I'm so excited to read it."

Thank you, Hannah! Aaaa I can't wait to hear what you think about it. It was super good! :D


Petrik Jody wrote: "Thank you, bro! Ohh, I'm looking forward to your thoughts on that duology! I've..."

I've had the first book since Christmas. Was just waiting on the release of book 2 to get started. I have heard ..."


Hahaha niceee! Might as well wait when there's only one more book left for series's completion, I do that sometimes too! :p

Enjoy, bro!


message 15: by Ginger (last edited Jun 19, 2019 08:48AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ginger Great review Petrik! Glad to see you loved this too. It’s outstanding and totally gripping!


Petrik Ginger wrote: "Great review Petrik! Glad to see you loved this too. It’s outstanding and totally gripping!"

Thank you, Ginger! It was so amazing, I didn't expect it to be this good! :O


Ginger Petrik wrote: "Thank you, Ginger! It was so amazing, I didn't expect it to be this good! :O"

I felt the same. I didn’t think this could be as good as Dark Matter. I was so wrong!


Petrik Ginger wrote: "Petrik wrote: "Thank you, Ginger! It was so amazing, I didn't expect it to be this good! :O"

I felt the same. I didn’t think this could be as good as Dark Matter. I was so wrong!"


I know right!? This was even better than Dark Matter imo! :D


Sunny ✨wordslikefury✨ I’m currently halfway through. I just know there is more pain to come. You’re right though. It’s the kind of book you want to read from start to finish without any interruptions. I read Dark Matter in one sitting. This is almost better.


message 20: by Sara (new) - added it

Sara Lovely review as always. I am obsessed with Crouch. Have you read his Wayward Pines series? I devoured them!


message 21: by Alexis (new) - added it

Alexis I can't wait to read this one.


message 22: by Piya (new) - rated it 4 stars

Piya Great review👍👍.Makes me want to pick this one ASAP :).Dark Matter was amazing ! I loved it . Super excited for this 🤗.


Petrik Sunny ✨wordslikefury✨ wrote: "I’m currently halfway through. I just know there is more pain to come. You’re right though. It’s the kind of book you want to read from start to finish without any interruptions. I read Dark Matter..."

Yeah... it was ridiculously difficult to stop reading, especially when you're about halfway through! I hope you'll find this book to be even better than Dark Matter! :D


Petrik Sara wrote: "Lovely review as always. I am obsessed with Crouch. Have you read his Wayward Pines series? I devoured them!"

Thank you, Sara! I actually haven't read his Wayward Pines series. I might have to make time for it while I wait for whatever he writes next! :)


Petrik Alexis wrote: "I can't wait to read this one."

I hope you'll get to it soon, Alexis. It was awesome! :)


Petrik Piya wrote: "Great review👍👍.Makes me want to pick this one ASAP :).Dark Matter was amazing ! I loved it . Super excited for this 🤗."

Thank you, Piya! I loved Dark Matter too, but this was even better imo! I hope you'll think the same about it! :)


message 27: by Sara (new) - added it

Sara Give them a shot- I think you would enjoy them!


Petrik Sara wrote: "Give them a shot- I think you would enjoy them!"

I will! Thank you for letting me know about it! :)


Nafeeza Brilliant review P! I am still trying to wrap my head around how awesome this was.


Petrik Nafeeza wrote: "Brilliant review P! I am still trying to wrap my head around how awesome this was."

Thank you, Nafeeza! Yeah, I've finished this a few days ago and it's still on my mind too! :)


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