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Cold Fusion 2000 by Karl Drinkwater
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really liked it
bookshelves: fiction

I have to admit that this novel took its time to grow on me. I started off not liking the quirky introduction *or* the main protagonist very much, yet by the end of the story I’d genuinely grown to love him, flaws and all.

Alex Kavanagh is a socially awkward, bitter, PHD drop-out, resigned to teaching physics, a job he absolutely hates. He has just been dumped (again) and still lives with his mum; he even gets bullied at the bus stop by groups of local teenagers. When he encounters Lucy, the girl who dumped him at university, he tells her exactly what he thinks of her: he’s sure that the end of their relationship is what actually spiralled his life out of control and brought about all his neuroses in the first place. The only thing is, the spark still seems to be there between them and Alex cannot help thinking that quite possibly, Lucy may have changed…

This was a fun read- a romance with a bit of a difference that had some good twists and turns as well as some humour and poignant aspects. Set in Manchester in the year 2000, I loved all of the evocative references to music and fashion; I was at college that year myself so identified with Alex’s younger sister and her own predicament with her exams. There was a lot of attention to detail that made this a really atmospheric read.

The characters have a good deal of depth to them too- Alex was hard work admittedly, but bitterness aside, was well-drawn and eventually came out of his shell. Some characters seemed rather elusive, though I expect that was the point. My favourite character was actually Natalie- a girl who wore her heart on her sleeve. It made me smile to realise that Alex didn’t pick up on just what was under his nose- typical!

In all honesty, the references to physics and science went a bit over my head. I didn’t really enjoy this book on any kind of scientific level- I’m just not clever enough for that! I experienced this more on the emotional side and liked the exploration of relationships and the journey that Alex underwent during the course of the plot.

This was a solid, realistic story about love, loss, and the choices we make. Readers will definitely identify with Alex in some way: his constant soul-searching, procrastination and continual remembrance of his lost love.

I appreciated the author’s writing style and would definitely consider reading more by him in future.

**Thanks to the author for providing me with a free copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review.**
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Reading Progress

August 21, 2013 – Started Reading
August 21, 2013 – Shelved
August 21, 2013 – Shelved as: fiction
August 23, 2013 –
21.0%
August 23, 2013 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-1 of 1 (1 new)

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message 1: by Karl (new) - added it

Karl Drinkwater Many thanks - one of the things I'm interested in is taking a character who is unpleasant, and managing to create sympathy for him or her in the end. It's something I want to try in a planned future novel (working title 'Ravenna Revisited'), so it's lovely to hear that I can achieve it even with such a dork as Alex!


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