“So what’s it about?”
“Artificial intelligence and what existence really means.”
The eyebrows quirked. “Just a little light reading then?”
I shrugged. “Sure. Let’s go with that.”
“Where’d you hear of it?”
That was an easier question to answer. “I’m part of a blog tour for it. We are offered books to read, and when we find one that interests us, we request a free copy. They send it. We read and give our opinion.”
“So what’s your opinion of… what was it called again?”
Again, an easy answer. “Synapse. By Steven James. But I don’t have an opinion yet. I kind of have to read it first.”
So I did.
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3 Simple Things You Should Know about Synapse
He’s a master of words–and points of view. Of tenses. Where most authors find one and stick to it, Steven James weaves several into a perfect web of connections that somehow manage not to short-circuit your brain. If you’d told me ten years ago that I’d love a book full of first, second, and third-person points of view, as well as past and present tenses, I’d have laughed. Especially at the thought of them all in one book.
But true to form, James doesn’t just pull them off, he does it in a way that makes you feel like it couldn’t have been done any other way.
So what are those three “simple” things?
I’m calling them simple because I’m keeping my review of them as succinct as possible.
- James knows characterization and story. As far-fetched as this plot would have seemed even fifteen or twenty years ago, he makes me believe it not only can but will happen someday. He not only suspended my disbelief as I read the book–but also of what could be.
- This is no mindless thriller that keeps you hopping without anything to feed your soul. I’ve complained a lot about Thomas Nelson this year–about their seeming deviation from strong faith elements in their books. Well… Synapse gave me hope that they haven’t abandoned solid Christian fiction after all. This book has such deep, rich faith-filled elements that I know I’ll need to read it another time or two in order to really and fully grasp all that James wired into his story.
- It’s almost impossible for me to talk about this book without giving away cool things that only the reader can discover for him or herself. So, I’ll just say this. I loved it.
Recommended for lovers of light speculative fiction (it’s not heavy sci-fi that you can’t follow if you aren’t of a scientific/nerdy turn of mind) and for lovers of well-crafted stories that make you think without turning preachy. James did a beautiful job of balancing all sides of various issues without seeming to come off as wishy-washy. I am thrilled to have received a free review copy of the book, and I’m eager to purchase a copy for a few of my friends. I think it will be well received.
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