Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Sleeping Giants


Sleeping Giants written by Sylvain Neuvel, a guy whose had to struggle to become the writer he is today. I always have respect for those who started out with little and had to work their way up there.

About this novel then, Neuvel's first and apparently the first in a trilogy - The Themis Files.

The first time I noticed this novel was actually at the annual book fair here in Antwerp, Belgium. It wasn't amongst those most advertised, but it had it share of face or must I say cover time.
I remember reading the back and thinking Hmmm.. sounds interesting. 
But I didn't take it with me.
I've become kind of picky when it comes to buying books. Two reasons. Too many books on my bookshelf that still need to be read, and those said bookshelfs are becoming too rapidly filled to the point of overflowing. I recently bought a nice bookcase from a home designer you might have heard of, a swedish brand. It's nothing fancy, but it sets the room apart. Or maybe it's the books it contains that are doing the trick.

But I'm meandering..
Where were we.. sleeping giants, as in big-ass robot parts, turning active all over the globe.
It starts with a hand, found one day by a girl who falls into the hole it made. A couple of years later, she's leading the investigation to make sense of this artefact. When they uncover more limbs, it's obvious that whatever it is, someone put it there.

Which answers the age old question.. are we alone in the universe?

According to Sleeping Giants we aren't. We are but a colony bred by a superintelligent being who has sent this robot in order to test our responsibility towards our rapidly growing technological feats. I admit, it's a bit more complex than that, but I'm not handing out spoilers, I'm just giving the bare minimum, so you know what you are getting into.

So.. aliens and robots.
It's an interesting topic.
The way in which Neuvel wrote his novel is rather uncommon. It's basically a long dialogue between two individuals, wherein the one asking questions never changes. It's he who's not to be named. An guy of which we know the bare minimum, not even his name, just that he's supposed to be powerful and has access to all sorts of information, showing interest in this project, as he goes on interrogating the key persons.
Sounds a little off? Well, it doesn't  do much for emotional connection with the story, but it kind of works without that. I even have to admit that I'm rooting for that unnamed guy. He's the one stable factor and as he seems to have more motives than meets the eye, he's not such a bad guy. Or so it seems.

I'm betting this one will get turned into a movie.