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  • By Rod Hylands
    Oct 27, 2010
    Extracted from NEW ZEALAND WRITERS' EZINE February 2008 - Part IIa Review of Lateral Connection by Rod Hylands by Jocelyn Watkin Rod Hylands has penned a modern-day thriller reminiscent of James Bond - high technology, high stakes, villains with big egos and "good guys" that sometime err into the dark side. Nearly everyone has a lot to lose at some point in the tale. The book begins with Henry Barek, an academic who appears to be on a quest to stop dangerous black hole experiments. Like many that are passionate about their ideals he has complex motives, which are not just limited to preventing the experiments. Hylands's grasp on future possibilities for technology is amazing. Central to the story is a privately owned space station manned by robots (who get out of control, of course) and the disturbingly real concept of "adversats"- advertisements on satellites that screen their messages to the same size as a full moon in the sky. The rights to these... More > "adversats" are worth big money. As both Henry Barek and his flawed plans unravel, the stakes get higher for most of the characters, who then try to ruthlessly outsmart each other across several continents and in the atmosphere. Occasionally, I felt that Hylands was trying too hard - too much action crammed in, with some characters just too clichéd. However, the story does rip along and it will be a treat for lovers of spy vs spy high-tech action.For those not quite up on the latest in gadgetry, Hylands is careful to explain how these things work in an absorbing way and without becoming too obsessive. The odd spelling mistake in Lateral Connection would suggest that another edit would have been prudent. The attractive cover design is also slightly let down by the use of a card that is too lightweight for a cover. Neither of these points will worry fans of James Bond type yarns, who will love this book. That's James Bond as portrayed by Hollywood and not by Ian Fleming, of course. Author’s note: I wrote the novel as a thriller cum private invetigator story wrapped inside a scientific mystery. I was therefore surprised at the James Bond comment. Sure, the scope of the novel is James Bond and there is even a villain whom Ian Fleming would have been proud of but in my opinion the similarity ends there. Hollywood? I don't think so. One important point. The theme of the novel isn't mentioned by the reviewer. The scientific point I make is that only help from afar (another universe?) can save us from technology gone mad. In other words it is beyond humankind to save itself from disaster. To see what I mean take a look at the uncontrolled scientific experiment known as ‘global warming’.< Less
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Product Details

April 20, 2009
Perfect-bound Paperback
Interior Ink
Black & white
0.7 lbs.
Dimensions (inches)
6.14 wide x 9.21 tall
Product ID
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