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The God Particle: A Novel Paperback – May 31, 2005


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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

A bizarre human experiment complicates a physicist's quest for the Nobel Prize in Cox's engaging, challenging second novel, a wryly comic thriller that incorporates several concepts from modern particle theory. The story hinges on two parallel and apparently unrelated story lines—in the more credible one, Texas physicist Mike McNair is involved in a high-pressure chase to detect the Higgs field and find the so-called "God particle" that will provide crucial insights into the nature of matter, time and the universe. As McNair closes in on his goal, an executive named Steve Keeley is nearly killed in Zurich after visiting a prostitute and being thrown from a window by an overzealous bouncer. Keeley miraculously survives, but the surgery that saves his life also produces a variety of strange symptoms. When Keeley sees a TV interview with McNair on the eve of the scientist's pivotal discovery, he realizes that his symptoms reflect a version of the Higgs field in his head that has given him near-psychic powers. Cox does a nice job handling a complex subject, but for all his erudite scientific writing and his humorous treatment of McNair's dating difficulties, his execution of the "mad scientist conducts an experiment that runs amok" plot line remains uneven at best. (June)
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From Booklist

A man takes a fall in Zurich. Soon after, he wakes up in a hospital and realizes that something terrible has occurred: he can feel what's about to happen before it does, and his brain keeps telling him he can do things that are physically impossible. Meanwhile, in Texas, a physicist is at the cutting edge of the search for an elusive (and possibly nonexistent) particle called the Higgs boson, also known as the God Particle. When the two men meet, they embark on a course that seems bound for cataclysm. Cox's previous novel, The Rift (2004), garnered praise for its blend of adventure and philosophical exploration. This one works for the same reason and will appeal to the same audience. The author's interpolation of current research (the Higgs boson is one of physics' Holy Grails) may win the novel some fans in the scientific community, too. Cox's prose could use a little smoothing (phrases like "Serena's heaving breasts" occur a little too frequently), but all in all, this is an imaginative mix of mystery and fantasy. David Pitt
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Del Rey (May 31, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345462858
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345462855
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 0.7 x 5.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,869,065 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Richard Cox believes he was born in Texas and now lives in Tulsa, Oklahoma. According to multiple Internet sources, he has published three novels: THOMAS WORLD, THE GOD PARTICLE and RIFT.

Richard has also apparently written for Oklahoma Magazine, This Land Press, and TheNervousBreakdown.com. He also contributed an essay to the collection, THE CUSTOMER IS ALWAYS WRONG: THE RETAIL CHRONICLES, edited by Jeff Martin.

However, you can't believe everything you read. Or see. For all you know, you're not even reading this right now.

Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Josie Renwah on November 18, 2006
Format: Paperback
Richard Cox has written an exciting work of fiction melding the diverse perspectives of his characters, quantum physics, religion, romance, and conspiracy theory into an accelerating read.

The science is woven into the book in a way that appeals to both science minded non-fiction readers and those who enjoy the fantasy of fiction.

His characters are human, rich, and vivid allowing empathy for even the ones I loved to hate. I enjoyed the conversations of science and religion and found them to be as engaging as the plot itself. The last half of the book really speeds up, keeping the reader pushing towards the end to reveal the answers.

The God Particle is a book about seeking answers. If you spend time pondering the deep questions, I recommend giving the God Particle a read. Also pick up Rift by Richard Cox. You'll dig it.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on August 21, 2005
Format: Paperback
The God Particle has all of the trappings of a very interesting story. It has intrigue, mystery, action, romance and, of course, science. As one who has an interest in Physics, I found the scientific content of the story fascinating as the author adeptly presented some fairly involved theories through conversation and introspection. While the story is a work of fiction, I believe the more important work contained on the pages within are of the possibilities that still exist in the universe, many of which we can yet only dream. It was both entertaining and enlightening.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful By David D. Deyo on December 29, 2005
Format: Paperback
I bought this novel in part due to the description on the back cover and in part because it came recommended by a shelf tag from a store employee touting this novel as a "high concept" bit of science fiction that blends spiritual themes with emerging ideas in physics.

For me, this novel failed to deliver what was promised. I'm a big fan of books about the metaphysics of quantum mechanics. Among my favorites is Gary Zukav's "The Dancing Wu Li Masters" which gave a great intro to quantum physics and tied it in very well with metaphysical and even spiritual implications.

While "The God Particle" has Mike McNair and Dallas news anchor Kelly Smith engaged in an airplane coversation about the relative territories of science, reason, and faith, these are never explored much beyond seeming contention between science and spirituality. There's no common ground explored aside from each being ways of seeing the universe.

In fact, in 300 pages of novel, I'd estimate that barely 30 pages of the entire book are spent exploring the implications of discovering the Higgs boson or of the experiment performed on Steve Keely in which he seems at first to be able to sense the Higgs field. Most of the story was spent on the sexual liasons and betrayals of various characters. This book was more a poorly-constructed tale of lust than an exploration of how the Higgs boson might be a key link between the worlds of human consciousness and the fundamental construction of reality.

If Cox had spent as much energy dealing with the implications of the science as he did voyeurism, sexual betrayal, and failed relationships, this might have been a read worthy of being called science fiction.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Chris Whitaker on June 4, 2005
Format: Paperback
I was lucky enough to read this novel several months ago. I found that it perfectly blended a current mystery ( the search for higgs ) and a real world setting for a suspence novel. I love how the author uses science for a bases of his novel that is rooted in current theory and practice. The characters were believeable and engaging in their different careers and in the way that they were brought together to participate in the search for Higgs. This is the second novel of Richard Cox and i found it to be better than the first. ( The Rift was the first ) I would recommend this book to anyone that enjoys a mystery that is set in science and backed by fact. I would rank this one close to The Davinci Code in it's use of cold hard truth instead of rumor and superstion. This is a must read for anyone who enjoys science and the unexplained phenomenons of the universe!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Johnnie on July 16, 2005
Format: Paperback
I highly recommend this book to anyone that is looking for an entertaining fast read. I really enjoyed the way the author described some of his pasages. I could really picture the scenes in my head and visualize what the writer was talking about. I really enjoyed the female interest (Kelly) and the interaction she had with Mike. This book really picks up speed in the last half of the book and I couldn't put it down. I am really looking forward to another novel by the writer.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Caitlin Huggins on July 4, 2005
Format: Paperback
I picked this up a few weeks ago after reading and enjoying "Rift" by the same author and was extremely entertained. The scientific aspects of the plot were handled in ways that the non-scientific readers can understand it and the plot twists were dramatic and emotional enough to have impact on the reader. All in all this book was a fascinating summer read. I highly recommend it to any interested readers.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Debra Hamel VINE VOICE on July 31, 2005
Format: Paperback
Richard Cox's The God Particle is told from multiple points of view, but principally through the eyes of its two good-guy male protagonists. The first is Steve Keeley--a super-charged businessman type who's looking to gain the vice presidency of his company within a few weeks of the book's opening, and looking to propose to his girlfriend within twenty-four hours. His path will eventually cross that of Mike McNair, the brilliant physicist in charge of a 12-billion-dollar independently-funded super collider in Texas aimed at discovering the "God particle" of the book's title, a theoretical particle physicists believe gives mass to other particles. The book opens promisingly: readers quickly feel a sick sense of dread as Steve, on a business trip to Switzerland, is pursued by an overly aggressive female employee whom we suspect--and whom he suspects--might very well "tumble off her precarious ledge of good judgment and fall into the Fatal Attraction abyss." But nothing comes of this, and more unpleasant events propel Steve toward his true fate, a fall from a third-floor window that leaves him with a serious head injury. He undergoes brain surgery and survives, but during his convalescence Steve begins hallucinating and finds that, among other things, he can sometimes read people's minds.

Steve's story eventually becomes the less frequently visited of the book's two storylines. We read about Mike McNair's work and his incipient relationship with a certain Kelly, an attractive anchorwoman with whom he exchanges emails laced with scientific and religious musings. One cares about Mike and wants his relationship with Kelly to work out, but in the end what happens between the two does not matter very much to the story.
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