The Smart App
on April 19, 2012
Intriguing near-future SciFi thriller based upon an interesting "what if" idea, which a plot built upon both expected and unexpected consequences.
Marred, however, by a certain amount of awkward writing. There are some awkward POV and scene shifts; and just enough speaker attributions left out of dialog so that readers may not always be certain which character is speaking. Some character motivations may may not be all that convincing.
Nonetheless, an intriguing read.
Though it's not unusual to see $.99 first novels on Smashwords, ones as well-written as this are rare finds. This is a complex novel, with a rich, smoothly-flowing narrative, focusing down nicely to intimate 1st person POV where needed, with key flashback scenes at just the right points. The real story is primarily about Tristan, but a variety of other characters, each with their own interesting story arcs within the larger story are well developed, and -- although it may not seem so when you first encounter them -- weave closely into Tristan's story.
Although I did have some problems with the book. The rich narrative is, well, too rich. There is overabundance of words (124,000+), and too many characters developed all too well. Certainly with an overabundance of foreshadowing. Pacing which otherwise could be just right seems slowed down by all those words, and arguably too much description.
Granted, the pace does pick up at the climax, but that almost makes it seem -- in comparison with the rest of the book -- almost a bit too rushed. At the same time, the complexity of viewpoints involved at that point were made me impatient. Perhaps that's why the climax, for me, flirted uncomfortably close to being a "deus ex machine".