Re­sis­tance Is Fu­tile

SFX: The Sci-Fi and Fantasy Magazine - - Books -

Love among the equa­tions

Re­lease Date: 28 May

341 pages | Hard­back/ ebook Au­thor: Jenny T Col­gan Pub­lisher: Or­bit

It’s a ti­tle that

con­jures images of the Borg and heavy, se­ri­ous hard SF, but this lat­est novel from Jenny T Col­gan is ac­tu­ally very much a love story. With a heavy dose of maths, aliens and gen­eral geek­ery. But no cy­borgs.

Con­nie has al­ways stood out: an ex­traor­di­nar­ily tal­ented math­e­ma­ti­cian; a woman in a male- dom­i­nated in­dus­try; bright red hair… Re­cruited to a dream job in Cam­bridge with the other top aca­demics in her field, she sets to work on a top- se­cret code- break­ing project. Team mem­bers in­clude her ca­reer hero­ine, an ex- lover and Luke, a strangely com­pelling maths ge­nius who al­ways wears the same clothes and likes to push pi­anos around fields. But crack­ing the code – a sig­nal from space – may only make things even more com­pli­cated…

The ear­lier part of the tale – math­e­ma­ti­cians so­cial­is­ing and cal­cu­lat­ing to­gether, try­ing to break the code – is ac­tu­ally the most en­joy­able, and the most gen­uine. Once the truth about the sig­nals ( and Luke) starts to come out, it never quite has the same sense of re­al­ism, as the char­ac­ters set off on a mad and not en­tirely con­vinc­ing adventure. That’s com­bined, though, with a bit­ter­sweet love story and a race to the fin­ish that leaves you gen­uinely un­cer­tain how the story will end. Never less than en­ter­tain­ing, as well as won­der­fully funny at times. Rhian Drinkwa­ter Jenny Col­gan sees The Ter­mi­na­tor as pri­mar­ily a love story: “The killer robot is re­ally a side­line, in my opin­ion.”

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