Sunday, August 31, 2008

Misspent Youth-Peter Hamilton

Misspent Youth
Peter Hamilton
Del Rey, Sep 16 2008, $26.00
ISBN: 9780345461643

In the near future former RAF pilot Jeff Baker invents the memory crystal that led to the datasphere, which replaced the Internet. Jeff Baker made his creation available to everyone placing him on a par with Mother Teresa for altruistic adulation.

In 2040, the European Union scientists make an incredible breakthrough in genetics; they developed a new biotechnique that enables them to replace aged genes. Jeff is the chosen one because of what he did with his memory crystal and the theory that his brilliance could solve the home energy crisis. The conversion works as Jeff goes from a septuagenarian to a twentyish person. Only Jeff finds his sex drive supersedes everything and everyone else including his used to be much younger wife and his teenage son.

Discounting some unnecessary English terrorists detracting from the fascinating thriller, MISSPENT YOUTH is an interesting look at the unintended consequences of science finding a Fountain of Youth. The story line focuses on out of control Jeff who finds his former peers ancient and only sex matters. In terms of relationships he succeeds as a born again sex machine, but the only intelligence he brings back from his years of experience is sex; thus narrowing the scope of an intriguing premise.

Harriet Klausner

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