Monday, May 08, 2017
Waking Gods / Sylvain Neuvel
New York: Del Rey, c2017.
A decade after the events of Sleeping Giants, scientist Rose Franklin and Themis operators Vincent & Kara are still together, called into action when another giant robot suddenly appears in a park in central London.
Now working for EDC (Earth Defense Corps), they are still just as eager to avoid causing any human deaths as they were 10 years ago. Unfortunately, the British government disregards their advice and precipitates a crisis with millions dead worldwide.
Finding out who the robots are and why they've come, and what their purpose is, fills this book. All the voices from the last book are here; Rose, Vincent & Kara, as well as our anonymous narrator, with a few new ones, including a young girl in Puerto Rico with psychic visions - who turns out to be an important character indeed.
The book is told in the same fashion as the first one, in reports, interviews, files and so on, It gives the same urgency and presence as the first, though feels a bit different here as they are facing a "disaster movie" kind of scenario, while in the first book it was more about scientific discovery itself. I found the disaster bits somewhat distressing, especially near the end -- the orgy of deaths in these kinds of tales is always disturbing.
But this was still a solid second book in a very fresh and vibrant new series that takes on hard science with the same eagerness as human relationships. Definitely worth reading. And, though I haven't tried it myself, I hear that the audio versions of both books are excellent productions as well if you prefer that format.