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Cold People (2023)

Tekijä: Tom Rob Smith

JäseniäKirja-arvostelujaSuosituimmuussijaKeskimääräinen arvioMaininnat
1518184,500 (3.45)9
The world has fallen. Without warning, a mysterious and omnipotent force has claimed the planet for their own. There are no negotiations, no demands, no reasons given for their actions. All they have is a message: humanity has thirty days to reach the one place on Earth where they will be allowed to exist, Antarctica.… (lisätietoja)

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» Katso myös 9 mainintaa

Näyttää 1-5 (yhteensä 7) (seuraava | näytä kaikki)
If you like character driven stories rather than plot driven, you might enjoy this book. Maybe. I didn't feel like the characters had much depth to them at all, and there wasn't really much of an arc for any of them... so maybe not.
If you're more into plot driven stories, you're definitely likely to have problems with this story and it's complete and utter lack of any feeling of closure. ( )
  ardaiel | Mar 4, 2024 |
On a pleasant summer day, aliens arrive and tell humankind that they have one month to move to Antarctica or else. It's quite a beginning for a novel, and an interesting one, but that's all we get of that. Everyone either moves south or prepares to die without question or resistance. The waters around Antarctica are filled with boats of every description, people are huddled on the shores of the most hostile continent in the middle of its winter, lacking fuel, shelter or clothing, which gives the great real start to the novel, seeing how people came together to...oh, never mind. As soon as people are huddled on shore, the book jumps forward twenty years.

This book is by Tom Rob Smith, who wrote Child 44 and a few other novels centered around the Soviet Union and its sphere of influence during the Cold War. They were thrillers, but ones well anchored in their historical setting, had interesting and plausible plots, and well-developed and complex characters. None of those elements make an appearance in this book.

So what is this book about, since it didn't care to waste time on the alien invasion or in polar survival? Well, since humankind is crowded onto a hostile area with very few resources and no interest in what is happening elsewhere, since people are living in extremely crowded and squalid conditions with barely enough of anything to survive, with all resources strictly controlled and rationed, with any surviving supplies from the rest of the world accessible only to the well-connected, with the end of any sort of representative government, and society controlled by a group of unelected elites, you'd expect that the story would finally gel around a resistance movement. You would be wrong. In this world, scarcity and over-crowding bring docility and contentment to the masses because, the author tells us several times, libertarianism has ended criminality. Also, there are draconian punishments for not being content and happy, but mostly it's a libertarian paradise, don't look to closely at how it works, that's not what this book is interested in.

So what is this book about? Well, because survival is so precarious, and the population dropping, all the scientists left have come together to create weird and terrifying hybrid animals that want to kill the remaining people. Yes, this was the consensus of the the best and brightest -- with aliens occupying most of the world, maybe, although no one has seen any sign of them, with humans desperately in need of a sustainable way to produce the things they need for survival, all the remaining wealth and resources is dedicated to building an enormous underground laboratory to make what they first intended to be small adjustments to the genetic code to make people better adapted to this new harsh environment, but now that all ethical considerations are considered moot, the scientists get over-excited and just keep one-upping themselves creating new animal hybrids, each one smarter, stronger and more able to survive and kill everyone. Do I need to tell you how this ends? Because, honestly, I gave up 85% of the way through. None of this was interesting, except, as it was written, the scientists weren't the bad guys. Also, since there was no more representative government, all the various world leaders opened a bar together. That was kind of interesting. ( )
1 ääni RidgewayGirl | Jan 14, 2024 |
I received this book in a Giveaway. I rated a 5, but would probably say 4.5 out of 5 if I could.

My favorite thing about this book, it is very well written. The author knows how to tell a story and do their research. I'm not sure if everything is 100 percent accurate, (I'm not going to look any of it up) but most of the details were believable to me, as far as the locations, history, and fauna are concerned.

I'm a sucker for an interesting premise, and this book delivered on that front. The problem with an interesting premise for a lot of books, they can't deliver on the story. I will admit, about halfway through this book, I wasn't jazzed on the direction we were going. It didn't seem all that "believable" to me. However, the author won me over, and I found myself invested.

The characters are great. I wish they would've jumped off the page more, but they weren't boring or too one dimensional.

This is a great Sci-Fi book. One I would gladly buy for my collection. ( )
  Zorandar | Nov 20, 2023 |
I read The Farm by Tom Rob Smith in 2014 and I can still remember the gasp I made when I realised the predicament the main character was in. In 2014, I published my first ever Top 5 Books list and The Farm was proudly featured.

Next came Child 44, later made into a movie on the big screen starring Tom Hardy, Gary Oldman and Noomi Rapace. I gave this 4 stars in my review and went on to become the first Australian blogger to interview Tom Rob Smith.

So, when a copy of Cold People arrived in my mailbox, I knew the author could convincingly set a plot in the harshest climate in the world, as the freezing Russian conditions in Child 44 were expertly conveyed to the reader. I also knew that Tom Rob Smith could spin a terrific yarn - as he did in The Farm - so I rugged up and started reading.

By page 8, he was off to a cracking start with this description of a ship's captain living 150 years ago:

"...[Captain] Moray was an expert in choosing his crew from the variety of outcasts on offer, his preference being for the melancholic, the sexual deviants and the thieves. For the thieves there was nothing to steal, for the melancholic there was the ocean to meditate upon and for the deviants there were other deviants. Moray never shared the secrets of his own past, cultivating the appearance of a forceful but fair man, a bastion of order in this otherwise barbarous industry. There was room for only one murderer on this ship." Page 8

Wow! I was hooked right there and then! The premise of Cold People is that all of humanity has to relocate to Antarctica in 30 days in order to survive. The 'event' that kicks off the action was very well written and I enjoyed experiencing it from a few character's points of view, in the same way we did when the dome dramatically came down in Under the Dome by Stephen King.

The plotting style reminded me of Matthew Reilly, and I know you'll be thinking "that's probably because of Ice Station", but actually it's because of the action in The Great Zoo of China. Cold People felt cinematic in scale at times and if you enjoy Matthew Reilly, I think you'll enjoy this too.

It's probably relevant to acknowledge that I don't read many dystopian novels or books set in a post apocalyptic world. Just as I followed Maggie O'Farrell blindly into her memoir based purely on my love of her writing, Tom Rob Smith beckoned me into his glacially cold dystopian future and I'm glad I followed.

Cold People by Tom Rob Smith is inventive and optimistic about humanity while pointing out our flaws and I'm glad I stepped into this frightening futuristic portrayal.

* Copy courtesy of Simon & Schuster * ( )
  Carpe_Librum | May 31, 2023 |
This had an intriguing premise and I enjoyed it a lot. An extreme situation to make the reader think about the implications of genetic engineering in the real world. ( )
  infjsarah | May 29, 2023 |
Näyttää 1-5 (yhteensä 7) (seuraava | näytä kaikki)
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Englanninkielinen Wikipedia


The world has fallen. Without warning, a mysterious and omnipotent force has claimed the planet for their own. There are no negotiations, no demands, no reasons given for their actions. All they have is a message: humanity has thirty days to reach the one place on Earth where they will be allowed to exist, Antarctica.

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