Home > dystopian, Genre, thriller > Book Review: Point by Thomas Blackthorne (series, #2)

Book Review: Point by Thomas Blackthorne (series, #2)

Text-heavy black book cover.Summary:
Mysterious cutter circles are showing up in the Britain of the future.  Thirteen teenagers gather in a circle, then slice the wrist of the person next to them all the way around the circle.  The MI5 recruits a neuroscientist to help figure out the circles before they reach epidemic proportions.  Meanwhile, her boyfriend, Josh Cumberland, finds himself sucked back into his old special forces unit when a civilian job reaches a mysterious end.  Are the two events connected?

I received an ARC of this book through the Angry Robot Army, and I sort of wish I’d noticed it was the second in a series.  I just dislike reading books out of order.  Also, I think perhaps if I’d read the first book in the series, I wouldn’t have been so misled by the cover.

In case you can’t see the cover, it says, “Britain, tomorrow.  The latest craze: cutter circles.  Thirteen kids. Each has a blade. On a signal everybody cuts. What else is there when life has no point.”  This makes it seem like this will be a book about depression and suicide in a post-apocalyptic world, right?  In fact the people committing suicide have been brainwashed by music in an emotiphone to further a political power move.  Which has…..nothing to do with real suicide or depression.

There’s nothing wrong with being a political intrigue book, but I am a bit disturbed at how Blackthorne utilizes psychology, psychiatry, and neuroscience in the book.  He makes it look like in the future we’ll be able to just….program people out of it or to do whatever we want them to do.  The brain is much more complex than that, and I just don’t like the message that such a plot device sends.

When looking at the book as the political espionage it actually is, as opposed to a book about mental illness in a dystopian world, it’s not a bad book.  I have the feeling that those who enjoy political intrigue books will enjoy it.  Josh is your typical wounded hero, and I did enjoy the scenes of him training.   Blackthorne creatively incorporates reality tv into the plot-line that many readers will enjoy.  The characters aren’t flat, but also aren’t particularly well-rounded.  That’s ok, though, because the focus of the book is the action and political intrigue.

Overall, the book seems to be an average future political intrigue action flick…in written form.  I recommend it to fans of that genre, but others will probably be bored.

3 out of 5 stars

Source: ARC from publisher

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  1. Kev East
    September 7, 2011 at 9:23 am

    I read this one when it came out this April. It’s not #2 in an ongoing series, just a sequel to a book called EDGE. I read this one before its predecessor too, and you don’t need to have read the first to make sense of this one.

    I read them because the author is actually Brit sci-fi guy John Meaney. He works with the well-known techniques known as neuro-linguistic programming (NLP), and has written at length on his website and elsewhere about how everything in these books is achievable, and being used today. Which is pretty darn scary.

    • September 11, 2011 at 9:50 pm

      The definition of a series is books that go together in a row. It doesn’t matter if so far there are only 2 books in the series. The main character is the same in both books, they happen in order, they are not companion novels. It’s a series.

      I work within the mental health industry, and I can tell you that the level of brainwashing and immediacy of it and the hypnotism in this book is way overblown and farfetched. Which is fine given that it’s set in the future, but still distasteful to me as someone who is a mental illness advocate.

      But if you want to be a conspiracy theorist, that of course is your business.

  2. September 8, 2011 at 8:53 pm

    Sounds creepy but I prefer the psychological over the political. Great review though!

    • September 11, 2011 at 9:50 pm

      Thank you! Glad you stopped by. 🙂

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