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Afterparty by Daryl Gregory

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

It begins in Toronto, in the years after the smart drug revolution. Any high school student with a chemjet and internet connection can download recipes and print drugs, or invent them. A seventeen-year-old street girl finds God through a new brain-altering drug called Numinous, used as a sacrament by a new Church that preys on the underclass. But she is arrested and put into detention, and without the drug, commits suicide.

Lyda Rose, another patient in that detention facility, has a dark secret: she was one of the original scientists who developed the drug. With the help of an ex-government agent and an imaginary, drug-induced doctor, Lyda sets out to find the other three survivors of the five who made the Numinous in a quest to set things right.

A mind-bending and violent chase across Canada and the US, Daryl Gregory's Afterparty is a marvelous mix of William Gibson’s Neuromancer, Philip K. Dick’s Ubik, and perhaps a bit of Peter Watts’s Starfish: a last chance to save civilization, or die trying.

Goodreads Summary

Afterparty grips you and doesn't let go until the bitter end.  The book starts with a bang...a suicide and practically races to the finish line after that first, unforgettable scene.  The book is told mainly from Lyda's perspective.  The reader will receive an in-depth understanding of Lyda's complicated mind.   When Lyda hears about Numinous, she realizes that Numinous just may be a drug she helped develop and that she must now try to stop its spread.  I found myself hoping that Lyda and her motley gang could help fix what Numinous destroyed.  I loved how the author detailed the effects and urgent addiction of the drug.  The reader will feel the need to see the drug destroyed.

It's hard not to get attached to the characters in this novel.  I found myself really rooting for Lyda and admiring her while still being horrified that someone with a brilliant mind chose to develop a drug like Numinous.  I liked the secondary characters and thought they played their supportive roles perfectly.  The plot was well-developed and easy to follow.  The setting is in the future, but it's not such a different future as our present give or take a few electronics.  The relationships between the characters were interesting as they all had their reasons for thinking and feeling about one another in a certain way.  Overall, this book is recommended to adult readers.

4 Stars

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  1. bn100 said...:

    someone's secret