Book Review: Supersymmetry by David Walton

Supersymmetry by David Walton

Publisher: Pyr

Publication Date: September 1, 2015

Edition: Paperback, 290 pages

Genre: Science Fiction, Thriller, Mystery

Rating: 4/5


More plot twists and thrilling action, but now, with time-travel!

Backcover:

Ryan Oronzi is a paranoid, neurotic, and brilliant physicist who has developed a quantum military technology that could make soldiers nearly invincible in the field. The technology, however, gives power to the quantum creature known as the varcolac, which slowly begins to manipulate Dr. Oronzi and take over his mind. Oronzi eventually becomes the unwilling pawn of the varcolac in its bid to control the world.

The creature immediately starts attacking those responsible for defeating it fifteen years earlier, including Sandra and Alex Kelley—the two versions of Alessandra Kelley who are still living as separate people. The two young women must fight the varcolac, despite the fact that defeating it may mean resolving once again into a single person.

*Disclaimer: I was provided with a review copy from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion*

After reading Superposition I was impressed by both how much Walton had improved from the first novel I’d read by him, and by how great the story was (my review). Now, after reading Supersymmetry, I am once again impressed and am having hard time picking deciding which one I like better!

Fifteen years after the varcolac was destroyed, the Kelley family has moved on, and that event in their past. Alessandra Kelly is still no more, because somehow, the split that occurred all those years ago, has managed to not yet collapse. So the sisters – two versions of Alessandra – have manage to live their own, separate lives. Alex Kelley has gone on to study physics and engineering, while Sandra Kelley went a different path and became a police officer.

Jacob Kelley is now retired from being a physicist, and has taken up teaching. Today he is enjoying a baseball game; he had wanted to get the girls to come out to the game with him because there is something important that he has to – needs to – tell them about. He almost decides to leave towards the end of the game, but stays because it’s his day off. As he returns to his seat he notices something is wrong: the seat’s shape appears to be distorted and refracting light in a wrong the way. But it can’t be happening. The only way something like that would be possible is if it were done the varcolac — then whole stadium collapsed.

The story starts good with a big shock involving Jacob, and then we meet Sandra and Alex, and learn about where they are now in their lives. I was excited to see we would be getting their POV’s this time, and actually have a whole new list of characters this time, too. One of these new characters is Ryan, who is a genius physicist now working NJSC. We first meet Ryan when Alex goes to the NJSC to put on a demo for the military with the new weapon that their company has created using Ryan’s technology he created. How did he created this new technology? Well, he created his own universe!!! It turn outs that technology of the Higgs Projector that was discovered by Brian and then destroyed by Jacob, is essentialy the same technology that Ryan has discovered again.

A couple of events then occur – something happens to Alex at the demo, Sandra is called on site to the collapsed baseball stadium, and Ryan discovers that something is trying to communicate with him from his black hole – to get the plots going, and seeing the Higgs Project technology is cool… but this is the same technology that we had is last book, and I like the plot of Jacob being convicted better at the start last time.  While I didn’t doubt it would be a good book again, I was a little underwhelmed with the start of the story, because I was afraid it was going the same story: same technology, but with new characters. However, just as I was starting to think this might be a refurbish, we learn that time-travel is possible! And then the mystery and non-stop thrill-ride, with all those plot twists and turns I loved so much from Superposition, were happening again!

I praised Walton last time for how well he was able to simplify the science behind the technology he presented, and create examples to help explain it so everyone would understand it. I might actually argue, that he does a better job at it this time. I already knew the basic chemistry behind how superposition worked last time, but the physics behind how he explains time-travel was new to me, and I think the physics is a little harder understand than last time. But again, he broke it down into simple and basic stuff, and I was able to sort-of understand the physics it. I couldn’t explain how it scientifically works like I could with superposition, but, thanks to the examples he choose to explain it, and how effectively he does it, I had no problems grasping the gist of the science and knowing what the important parts were of how time-travel works. I felt like I knew time-travel and well as I did superposition.

My only complaint last time was that Jacob didn’t feel unique to me as main protagonist. That issue of uniqueness was thrown out the window with Alex and Sandra. Them once being the same person in unique, yes, but aside from, the uniqueness and the strength of these characters was their development and seeing how they turned into the individuals they are today. For those of you who read Superposition, is should be obvious by the names which split each Alessandra is, but if not, you will be able to tell by their personalities – which is why I loved their development. The even of varcolac and them should have had major impact on each of them in different ways, and Walton was able to capture that difference perfectly! He doesn’t comes out and say right away which Alessandra is which – I don’t know if he does it on purpose so I won’t say how I know, but it makes sense that each girl became who they were. Then at one point in the story, we learn how each Alessandra feels about herself, and what she thinks of her twin… and I can’t say what their revelations are, but it was a great moment!

I have heard that the publisher is promoting this as a stand-alone novel. I agree with that, and think it could be read that way, but my recommendation would be to read Superposition first. You aren’t going to be lost starting with Supersymmetry first, but you will spoil some things for the previous novel, and I think you will get a better experience reading them in the order of publications.

I’m really torn between which one of these I like best, because they are both amazing, techno-thriller stories! The development of and relationship between Alex and Sandra is wonderful; my interest in the plot was down at first, but then we get time-travel – which Walton does an excellent job of explaining – and then it’s twist after twist after twist again, with an ending that will blow your mind!

If you read Superposition, you’re going to want to continue on and read this! If you haven’t read Position yet, I bet that after you read Supersymmetry, you’re going to want to back and read that one too!

4/5 Rating

-DJ

Date Read: 08/16/15 - 08/21/15
Review Written: 08/24/15
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13 thoughts on “Book Review: Supersymmetry by David Walton

  1. Steph says:

    This sounds absolutely fascinating. Thank you for bringing it too my attention. I’m very curious about the twins

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  2. Tammy says:

    I have a copy of this book from the publisher, and I’m going to read it first, simply because I have it, LOL. If it’s a good as you say, I will definitely go back and read the first one:-)

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  3. Oh yeah, I’d forgotten that you’d read Quintessence before you tackled this duology. Glad to hear his writing has come a long way. Honestly I was a little hesitant because the response to Quintessence has been mixed, but I’ve heard nothing but good things about Superposition. Glad the second book lived up to the first, I’m looking forward to reading soon.

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    • I almost said no to the publishers request, because after Quintessence, I was afraid I wasn’t going to like these either. But I had read a really good review for Superposition a couple months ago so I thought I’d give Walton another shot. They are much, much better.

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  4. One of these days, I *will* read this series.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. lynnsbooks says:

    I’m with Lisa – one of these days! I saw this and really wanted to read it but decided there was just no way at the moment. I’ve gone a bit doolally and got too many books!
    Lynn 😀

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  6. […] Book Review: Supersymmetry by David Walton […]

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