Technomancer - B.V. Larson



Technomancer is you might get if you combined Jason Bourne and the TV show X-Files. The start of the plot is very Bourne Identity-ish: the main character, who goes by the rather romantic name of Quentin Draith, wakes up in a hospital with amnesia and a rather disturbing familiarity with the mechanics of violence. As he wanders around and irritates people, he discovers that something's going wrong in his hometown of Las Vegas: mysterious objects, each of which has a specific power, are appearing all over the place and creating chaos. They appear to be controlled by a powerful set of people known only as the Community. Bizarre deaths--disappearances, spontaneous combustions, choking on sand, and more--are becoming common. Draith discovers that he has one of these mysterious objects himself and sets out to unravel the mystery.

I didn't finish this, but not because I particularly disliked it--simply because it was due at the library and I didn't care enough about it to renew it. (My library charges $$ for renews/holds/requests.) Someday I'll see it again at the library and finish it...until then, here's my reaction to the portion I read (about the first two-thirds). 

Draith reminds me a lot of Sandman Slim (Richard Kadrey)--his attitude feels too violent, heartless, and nihilistic to me. I also don't find his humour remotely entertaining, but people in his world definitely do and laugh sycophantically at his "jokes"--always a bad combination for me. I also found him one of the most arrogant, sexist jerks I've come across in a while--to the point that he actually hits on a recently bereaved bride and comments that he might have rescued her even if she were not attractive, etc. What ticked me off even more is that, when speaking with said bride who watched her husband disappear in something like an antimatter tornado, his main preoccupation is trying to determine whether the husband was able to consummate the wedding before he died because apparently if the groom had "tapped that ass" (gah I hate that expression) Quentin can feel a little better about his death. First, the groom is dead, so if it were me I'd be putting my empathy with the bride--the inability of the protagonist to even empathize with females is like male gaze to the max. Second, for me at least, that is one hell of a repulsive train of thought given the circumstances. Anyway, I can't find a character to attach my emotional interest in, and the death count, especially given its graphic nature, is already much higher than I usually take. And I know, I know, I'm judging prematurely...but the world just doesn't feel very real or well-thought out to me. All in all, it's not a bad book...just not a great fit for me. Definitely recommended for fans of Sandman Slim, though.