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A Necessary End Kindle Edition
|Length: 175 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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"Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress"
Is the world really falling apart? Is the ideal of progress obsolete? Cognitive scientist and public intellectual Steven Pinker urges us to step back from the gory headlines and prophecies of doom, and instead, follow the data: In seventy-five jaw-dropping graphs, Pinker shows that life, health, prosperity, safety, peace, knowledge, and happiness are on the rise. Learn more
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Wilson and Pinborough do a great job of thrusting the reader into the middle of a full-blown crisis, but making it understandable at the same time. The writing is uniformly good and the plot is generally entertaining. The story feels a lot like Children of Men (the movie not the vastly-different book) in a lot of ways, though unique enough to be distinct. There is a consistent feeling of society collapsing while the main character tries to navigate his way to the truth as society comes grinding down slowly.
While Nigel's fights with his wife and their discussions about God and religion are something I could have done without, and become a bit tiresome over the course of the book, the dialogue is sound and believable. The pacing moves along smartly as well and there are rarely down moments to trudge through. The characters aside from the above-mentioned conflicts are generally likable. Considering how Nigel is portrayed at the beginning this may not have been the case, and the authors thankfully made the choice not to make the characters unpleasant to read about. They're by no means perfect, but the book strikes a delicate balance between them being someone you want to root for and someone with human foibles.
The complaints I have are minimal. For one there's a few too many subplots going on, and the red herrings aren't all as satisfying as they could have been. The Henry plot, following a man bent on revenge was underwhelming in particular because it didn't feel like it added to the story much. Secondly, the book is short - about 170 pages - and certain aspects of the story could have been explored more. While the reader gets a taste of the chaos gripping the rest of the world from some of the news interludes in the text, I would have liked to see more about that covered.
The book is short, but that makes it a quick read. Moreover it does what a good book does - it leaves the reader wanting more rather than overstaying its welcome.
This is a tightly plotted novel, with a great deal of suspense. There are some good horror elements involved in the novel. The characters are good and bad. I think Nigel was a well-developed character, but I found Abby to be really annoying. Her fatalism and hard-headed beliefs wore on me as the novel progressed. The novel gets into heavy religious and philosophical debates. Although, I think they fit the story, they dragged on for too long and I found myself wanting to skip those parts. The writing is really strong in this novel. The pace was good, and it was in general quite entertaining. Overall, this is an enjoyable novel that I recommend.
Carl Alves - author of Reconquest: Mother Earth