Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Book Review: Implant (J. Grace Pennington)

When Gordon Harding is given the chance to be rid of his cancer, he doesn’t think there’s much to lose. It is still a very new program, but what could it hurt?

While he’s in the lobby of the pristine medical facility where this new implant program is searching for its first patient, Gordon is sucked forward in time, where the program is fully developed. And now, not only can it heal cancer, but every other disease too. Every person on the planet has had the chip implanted, but the action has come with resistance. Gordon finds himself in the company of rebels, and he’s been chosen to put an end to the implants and the control they give the leaders of the program.

Implant takes place within just a few days. Gordon has a limited amount of time to help the rebels, but he is unsure of himself. He’s just been thrust into the future, and he has little idea of what’s going on and why, only that these people need his help, or they will die. The story seems a little slow in some places, but it could give Gordon time to develop and build courage. When Gordon is pulled forward in time things get confusing, but they are slowly explained.

Gordon himself, though, seemed a little different. I’m not sure what it was about him that seemed off with me, though. He seemed to take his being pulled forward in time rather well, with few questions, but this may have been due to the intimidating presence of the character Doc. His development is nice, coming to full bloom near the climax and making the story more intense. He wasn’t my favorite protagonist, but he is a nice guy. I liked his and Doc’s relationship. Doc never babied him, and that probably helped him develop into who he became.

Doc is a great character. He’s a no-nonsense kind of guy, and the way his allegiances seem so shaky it keeps readers wondering about him. He’s gruff and often speaks roughly, but he can be gentle. There is firmness behind it, too, but this combination of gruff and gentle made him endearing. He doesn’t hold Gordon’s hand as Gordon grows and learns about this world he’s been thrust into, but treats him like a man who is fully capable of the things Doc assigns to him.

The plot twists in the book perhaps could have been foreshadowed more. I was still surprised by them, but it would have been interesting for at least one of the twists to have some more foreshadowing. Most of the plot twists were very interesting, and it made the book better when I better understood the why behind them. But the worldbuilding was well done. It had similar elements to Grace’s Firmament series, with the medical terms, and it was interesting to explore future earth and the gadgets being used.

Violence/gore: People are shot, and some have their Implants detonated, which makes their heart rupture (and there's a lot of blood sometimes).

Profanity: Only referenced.

Sexual content: None.

Other: Doc smokes a lot, and also seems to drink liquor.

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