Monday, 26 November 2012

Book Review: AMPED - Douglas E Richards

Synopsis - Kira Miller is a brilliant scientist who discovers how to temporarily boost human IQ to dizzying levels.  But this transcendent intelligence brings with it a ruthless megalomania.  Determined to use her discovery to propel human civilisation to a higher plane, despite this side effect, Kira and ex-special forces operative David Desh recruit a small group of accomplished scientists, all of whom are safely off the grid.  Or so they think...

Soon Kira and her team are fighting for their lives against unknown but powerful adversaries.  Worse still, while on the run and being relentlessly attacked from all quarters, Kira comes across evidence of savage acts that the enhanced version of Desh kept hidden, even from himself.  Now both she and Desh must question everything they think they know.  Can they trust each other?  Can they even trust themselves?

And all the while, the greatest threat of all may be coming from an entirely unexpected direction.  A threat that could lead to devastation on a global scale.  And time is quickly running out.  (Taken from Goodreads)

Review - I received this book from the author in exchange for a review.  What I have discovered reading a book series is that you can love the original and the sequel(s) can be disappointing or less exciting, or vice versa.  Yes, I do prefer WIRED, the first book, but AMPED is not disappointing, in my opinion it's just not quite as good.

At first, I was feeling a little let down.   There was more action going on at this stage in WIRED, however getting into the second half of the book, the action certainly hotted up.  It's all very highbrow and scientific, but there is something scary in that it could become possible in the future.  Maybe not quite on this scale but in some form or other.  Mr Richards is a clever author, so he knows a thing or two about the world of science, you only have to look at his credentials.  But to weave this knowledge into a complex, and I mean very complex tale with so much going on is quite a substantial task.  It could have been overkill and ended with a mess that was just too much to comprehend but the intricate plot does work very well.

The core characters are Miller, Desh, Metzger, Griffin and Connelly who run Icarus.  They have recruited various scientists and we meet a couple of these during the course of the story.  Several opponents are introduced including Jake who runs the black ops team and those who employ him.  We have already met the team of five in the first book and the rest are new characters but we learn who they are and why they are on the hunt to destroy Icarus and it's leader.

A great storyline with plenty of twists and turns to keep the reader interested and turning the pages.  Strong characterisations, good descriptions and locational use.  4*

Kindle edition: ASIN: B007PRE5IE

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