Wednesday, February 18, 2009

The Speed of Dark by Elizabeth Moon

Title: The Speed of Dark
Author: Elizabeth Moon
Reviewer: Karen
Genre: Teen or Adult Fiction (depending on the library)
Rating: Amazing
Alerts/Warnings: None
Premise: "Thoughtful, poignant, and unforgettable, "The Speed of Dark is a gripping exploration into the world of Lou Arrendale, an autistic man who is offered a chance to try a brand-new experimental "cure" for his condition. Now Lou must decide if he should submit to a surgery that might completely change the way he views the world . . . and the very essence of who he is.." (King County Library System)
Opinions: First, let me say that this was not a book that I would have normally picked up to read. I read it for the book club that I am in and I am so glad that I did. This book is set in a future where computers are so advanced that everything is in a data cube making real books rare to see, and there is a cure for so many things that affect us in our day (including violent tendencies in criminals, as well as a possible new cure to extend life).

This story takes place in a time where there is a way to identify autism in the womb and to cure it before the child is born. In such a day, though, what happens to the autistic individuals who were born before the cure was discovered. This is an interesting look into the life of an adult man with autism - how he views life, how he views others and himself, and how his views change as he learns that he could "volunteer" to be a test subject for adults who missed being "cured" when young.

This book asks many profound and life-altering questions. It made me personally begin to look at life and everything around me in a new light. I am impressed by the author's ability to draw you into Lou's thinking process and who he is and to enlighten the reader on some of the intollerances that many people have for anyone they view as "different". I highly recommend this as a read to anyone and everyone and am thoroughly looking forward to discussing it in our book club.

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