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Pharmacology Paperback – December 6, 2011
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"In a word: Mind-blowing....An intriguing fusion of poignant coming-of-age tale and skull crushing social commentary....Powered by a soundtrack featuring Public Enemy, Jeru the Damaga, and Digable Planets,Pharmacology is one of those cool “full immersion reads."--Unabashedly Bookish, BN.com
"This gripping novel, written in an eye-catching style that many have already compared to Chuck Palahniuk, will suck readers in and keep them hooked until the very end. The story is unique, the depictions of 90s-era San Francisco are gritty and real, and the main character is a fascinating, multifaceted study of human morality."-- San Francisco Book Review
"Pharmacology is a bold and edgy dive into a world dominated by corporate greed that eventually consumes the person who seeks to expose it." -- Neon Tommy, Annenberg Digital News
"Pharmacology is urban fiction with an edge, it paints a view of the city of San Francisco not usually seen by the tourist or even most of its dwellers. It walks us into a world of characters that do not fit the mold and are accepting of each other's limitations, and shows us the world through their eyes and their motivations. It does not demonize the sub-culture but rather humanizes it - these are multi-layered characters defined by the sum of their parts and not by a single characteristic or trait. Pharmacology is a must read."--MariaS, Flair
"Herz's incisive look into the early days of the internet and his skewering of the fear tactics used by the pharmaceutical conglomerates includes some of the most eccentric supporting characters I have ever encountered." --Emily Ruben, Author of Stalina
"Christopher Herz’s gadfly of a novel, Pharmacology, rips the gauze from our romantic notions about the dawn of the digital era. Like Sarah Striker, we fall in love with 1990s San Francisco, peopled with heroin-addicted vampires, bicycle messengers on social crusades, and graffiti artists who go legit for six-figure salaries at technology start-ups. But there’s always a price to pay, especially when Sarah discovers that the underground drug trade and above-board pharmaceutical industry are selling the same thing: ephemeral, chemical cures for being human. In Pharmacology, Philip K. Dick’s futures have become our glorified, recent past and ubiquitous present, and Sarah must choose whether to inhale another glass-shard line of clickable pleasure, or to swim against the rising tide of spurious information for a shore that can actually be walked upon barefoot. In the quiet spaces of this brilliant, kinetic narrative, Herz poses a bracing question: what happens to a society that pays this generation’s subversives handsomely to medicate the next generation’s subversives out of existence?" -Harold Taw author of Adventures of the Karoke King
"Set in 1993 amid the dawning of email technology and America's pharmaceutical revolution, Herz's (The Last Block in Harlem 2010) energetic novel examines the parallels between fringe culture and family devotion....Hip, frenetic narration....Herz's social observations are often keen and apt." --Booklist
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Top customer reviews
I don't typically give a synopsis of the story when I do my reviews, you can do that work for yourself. I'll just give ya what I liked.
This book had a little of a lot of things. It had some intrigue, some romance, some drugs, some modern day urban vampire wierdness. Most of all it had a good solid story. AND it made you THINK!! How many books these days really make you do that anymore, huh? When I put this book down I found myself thinking, do the drug companies really make up their own illnesses? How is that legal? I've always thougt ADD was overdiagnosed, but how much of this book is really based in truth, I'm not sure. I think I'm afraid to know the truth.
Then the emphasis on drugs switches to an evil drug company. The tales of drug marketing tactics, including search engine optimization, key opinion leader physicians, and creating awareness of ADHD in order to maximize sales of a new drug... with one small misunderstanding of drug marketing regulations, the story was funny and in some ways uncomfortably close to reality.
Sarah has various romantic interests and I wasn't particularly moved by any of them, but her connection to her dad was consistent, believable, and touching.
An odd writing style with a lot of clipped sentences and an overhead of early nineties references. Mostly enjoyable. I wish I would have liked many of the secondary characters more.
I absolutely loved the details about the pharmaceutical companies. Everything else in the story was shallow. Character development was weak. I didn't believe the main character was female. Wonder if the author had named Sarah Alex and made the character more androgynous if the story would have had more dimension.
It was easy to predict the information in the report Alberto gave to Sarah. The ending of the story was cheesy. (Lol. Pun intended. If you read the story my comment might make you smile.) The ending occurred as if the author said, "Well, that's all I'm gonna share about pharmacology. Let's end this story and tie everything up with a bow."
If you're up for a quirky story, you might like Pharmacology by Christopher Herz.
This novel is a veritable jig-saw puzzle of twists and surprises that keep the reader engaged to the very last page. I enjoyed and highly recommend this novel.
Most recent customer reviews
I have to admit that the book started slowly, and it took me some time to get into.Read more
Novel was about a teenager whose dad...Read more