Wednesday, April 3, 2013

“Why do only the awful things become fads? I thought. Eye-rolling and Barbie and bread pudding. Why never chocolate cheesecake or thinking for yourself?” --from "Bellwether"

Pop culture, chaos theory and matters of the heart collide in this unique novella from the Hugo and Nebula winning author of Doomsday Book.

Sandra Foster studies fads and their meanings for the HiTek corporation. Bennet O'Reilly works with monkey group behavior and chaos theory for the same company.   When the two are thrust together due to a misdelivered package and a run of seemingly bad luck, they find a joint project in a flock of sheep. But a       series of setbacks and disappointments arise before they are able to find answers to their questions.

Lucas says:
"This is the smartest, best written, and most clever work of fiction I've read in a really long time. What's smart about the book is the plot, it is masterfully crafted. Every detail presented fits very neatly into the fabric of the narrative. The character's are AMAZING and well written. Willis nails contrasting Boulder, CO's eclectic group of citizen's with one another: there's the hokey Wyoming cowboy, the obsessed statistical research scientist, the ever trendy and dim witted administrative assistant, the incognito wealthy philanthropist, and a flock of sheep, all of whom are involved in a situation involving trend research and chaos theory.

The book is clever in that it is literally science fiction. This is a story that most libraries and bookstores shelve in their science fiction/fantasy sections (alongside books like Fahrenheit 451 and Lord of the Rings); I wonder how many people are aware this is fiction about people working in a scientific research lab? Literally - science fiction. No magic, no space travel, no fantasy, not even a dystopian theme. This is a story that could easily happen in the world we live in.

This book exemplifies how gifted some of our local authors are here in the Front Range. My overall impression - Willis' writing is a joy to read in Bellwether."     

No comments: