Katy Noyes's Reviews > Cold Fusion 2000

Cold Fusion 2000 by Karl Drinkwater
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really liked it
bookshelves: first-reads

Review of a Goodreads Giveaway copy.

Refreshing. Like a few stories rolled into one - the 30-something academic living unwillingly at home, physics obsessed and socially awkward; the identical twins, one of whom broke said academic's heart, the other hoping to heal it for him; the smitten friend.

Alex is on the right side of likeable, but it's hard not to get frustrated with someone who has let a bad break-up ruin their life. He is half blind to the real emotions of the women around him but still manages to remain quite sweet.

The physics isn't too intense but the title still goes over my head I'm afraid.

A quirky and light read. I recently read Geek Girl and The Rosie Project concurrently with this and it's in good company.
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Reading Progress

April 8, 2013 – Shelved
April 8, 2013 – Shelved as: first-reads
May 5, 2013 – Started Reading
May 5, 2013 –
page 3
May 6, 2013 –
page 18
May 6, 2013 –
page 28
May 6, 2013 –
page 38
May 7, 2013 –
page 53
May 8, 2013 –
page 61
May 8, 2013 –
page 72
May 8, 2013 –
page 86
May 9, 2013 –
page 92
May 10, 2013 –
page 104
May 11, 2013 –
page 126
May 12, 2013 –
page 160
May 13, 2013 –
page 170
May 15, 2013 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-1 of 1 (1 new)

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message 1: by Karl (new) - added it

Karl Drinkwater Thanks for the review and the suggestion of similar books! As to the title, I'll paste in the section from my FAQ.
What is the significance of the novel's name?

Both Alex and Lucy Jane have two aspects to their personality which are divided. For Alex it is his love-obsessed literary/artistic/poetic side, which he abandoned along with his PhD; and his physics-obsessed geeky obsessive side, which dominated him at the start of the novel. At the start of the novel physics, not poetry, is his touchstone in the real world. The artistic side only comes to life again with Jane's help during the fugue as the past comes alive. By the end of the novel Alex is balanced - he still has the geeky physics obsessions but he also reads poetry again. The two parts of his personality are united, fused together thanks to Jane and the subconscious events that occur during his cold shower.

So fusion = bringing fragmented (decaying, radioactive) pieces together, unifying them. It requires heat. Heat comes from passion.

As we saw above, Lucy Jane also had two sides to her personality. Her caring Jane and less caring Lucy sides. By the end of the 72 hours both of them manage to fuse their personalities into a whole, or at least lay the foundations for that, and she is able to move on into the light.

Also cold fusion is what scientists want but it is impossible. Alex wants the past, it is also impossible, but the twist is that due to a weird conjunction of events he sort of does get that.

Death is cold, and the title hints at the bringing together of life and death, enabling people to cross over on the boundary.

Oh, and ice is very cold. Ice skating sneaks its way into the plot. The shower is like cold ice. This enables the shower to act as a a transition, a bridge to death as it gets colder then lets Alex get in touch with Lucy's spirit, they fuse temporarily. Likewise at the end of novel, a cold day, Alex and Natalie's lives are entwined, fused.

Also Alex lives mostly in his mind, not the real world. He misses basic things we would observe. So there is irony that his novel is called Cold Fusion, set during a hot summer - it shows his obsessions with physics over-ride his perception of the world-as-is.

One reader sent me this thought: "I've only read the first few pages of 'Fusion 2000' so I don't want any spoilers but you use song titles to denote time frames at the start so I was wondering if it was a reference to 'Disco 2000' by Pulp?" That idea, 'let's meet up once more and see if the past can be renewed or improved' is certainly relevant.

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