My rating: 4 of 5 stars
WOW! It’s been a long time since I’ve read any real adult Science Fiction. I know that sounds a bit weird, but most of the SF I’ve read in the last few hears has been space opera or science fantasy adventure (and rereading old favorites don’t count). But Flashforward by Robert J. Sawyer is true Science Fiction at it’s root. I must be honest that listening to this book made me question whether or not I could ever be a good enough writer to write this kind of Science Fiction.
Ok. Enough about my awed feelings.
Flashforward had an incredible concept about time travel, it was loaded with fun scientific debate, and had a very compelling human factor. I must admit that the science sounded much more interesting that most of the human dramas that surrounded it. Even though the human dramas within the story were very realistic, I found Theo’s quest to prevent his murder a much more compelling sub-plot than Lloyd’s conflict over whether or not to pursue a marital partnership with a woman, whom he truly loves, because he’s convinced the relationship is doomed to failure.
I found myself often wondering whether or not many of the scientific opinions and biases are that of the author or simply selected biases for each character in the story. This added an extra bit of fun for me as the reader/listener to anticipate how the story was going to unfold. I found that the science and the story were well weaved together from the perspective that the science supported the story in its progression. Peoples discussions about science were natural. Though if I were watching this book as a movie there were many parts of the narrative where I could picture a bubble appearing with extensive notes about XYZ science fact. Hey reader in case you didn’t know this science fact let me fill you in. It was cool, but sometimes a little distracting to the story.
I found this book to be for the major Science Fiction geek. In my opinion, this book weighed heavier on the science than on the story, but that was all right with me because that’s what the story really was about to begin with.
What was the science you ask? Well… A group of researchers at CERN are working with the Large Hadron Collider to create the elusive “higgs boson particle,” the proposed elementary particle allows other particles to acquire mass. But during their test something unexpected happens, everyone on the planet is flashed 21 years into their future and they experience 1 minute and 23 seconds (give or take a few seconds – my memory is faulty) of their life. Unfortunately, “life” goes on in present day which means that everyone stops functioning for that 1 minute and 23 seconds and all hell breaks loose. How did that happen & how will our cast of characters deal with how their lives have changed because of that “Flasforward Event?”
If you enjoy reading about real up-to-date science and enjoy the questions of quantum mechanics and the origins of the universe. This might be the book for you. 😉 As a science, geek myself I totally enjoyed it.