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review 2017-03-29 03:40
Welcome to the Land of Nod
Nod - Adrian Barnes

This book has been on my radar for a little bit. A Buzzfeed quiz told me it should be my next scifi read and I decided to take it up on that. For once, Buzzfeed did not disappoint. 

 

Nod takes place in a world where the majority of people on the planet are unable to sleep. Not like, "Oh, gonna toss around for a bit" or "I slept for five hours but it feels like even less". No, it's point blank no sleep. And if you didn't know, going without sleep for too long will make you go crazy and eventually die. A small population of humanity, though, are able to sleep and all share the same dream. Paul, our narrator, is one of those few and he tells the tale of how the world and his partner, Tanya, descend into sleep-deprived madness. 

 

This book was amazing. I really enjoyed it. The concept itself is just incredible. I get really sick when I don't sleep well enough for one night. I can't imagine the Hell the characters go through in the 24 days this book takes place during. The book also is just as much an exploration of linguistics and the nature of reality as it is what happens when you sleep deprive people for too long. Seriously, the language and exploration of language in this book is seriously beautiful. 

 

The plot of Nod is seriously sound and well constructed. There were twists and turns but nothing that felt thrown in there for the sake of drama. It all served a purpose and fell into place. The characters themselves were seriously well constructed. Charles was an incredible villain and I can't decide if I liked him or was frightened by him. Paul himself wasn't necessarily the best character but he was an amazing narrator. All the characters were interesting and awesome. The scares were incredible, the laughs were great, it all was just great. 

 

I'm sure you're wondering why, if I liked this book so much, why only 4 1/2 stars? Why not the full 5? Well, it could drag a little. Paul's writerly style, while awesome and poetic, could get a bit monotonous at times and I'd find myself skimming. It picks up fairly soon, but the first couple of chapters, while not bad by any means, did take away from the book as a whole. 

 

Final rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars. Really good, definitely recommend and will probably buy since payday is Friday. 

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text 2017-03-22 21:23
Reading progress update: I've read 54 out of 250 pages.
Nod - Adrian Barnes

Just go to through the most awkward yet well written sex scene I've ever read. I feel uncomfortable now. I think I wanna be celibate now.

 

That said, I'm liking this book. Very interesting and unlike anything I've read before.

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review 2016-10-02 09:20
BOOK REVIEW: Nod by Adrian Barnes
Nod - Adrian Barnes

Paul is an etymologist – his life revolves around the exploration of words and their origins, and writing books about their history and transformation.

As the end of the world begins he is working on his next book, the eponymous Nod, which focuses on words and phrases that have fallen out of common usage and understanding.

Anyway, in forgetting words, my thesis went, we abandon them. But the realities those banished words gave voice to don’t vanish: old, unmanned realities lurk eternally in dark woods, in nursery tales, police reports, and skittish memories. Like Grimm wolves.

All the old, whispered words still exist – fantastic words and phrases like ‘babies in the eyes’, ‘cavalry clover’, ‘doomrings’, ‘mavworm’ ‘Blemmye’. Thousands and thousands of them. And when we hear those words, even in the antiseptic light of the twenty-first century, we feel a slight breeze, a chill presence we can’t quite identify.

After psychosis sets in for those who cannot sleep, and Nod falls into the wrong hands, Paul’s world begins to spiral out of control in a way he never could have imagined.

‘Watch this.’ He turned and faced the angel-watchers, smiling grimly. Cupping his hands around his mouth, and without even bothering to try to sound like he meant it, he yelled, ‘Holy shit! Those aren’t angels. They’re devils!’
The effect was instantaneous. There isn’t much distance, once you’re forced to think about it, between a smile and a grimace of terror. Just two slightly different sets of facial contortions. On the street behind us, a hundred expressions shifted, and we all entered yet another hell. A man began to scream in a little girl voice while the skeleton woman dropped to her knees, still gazing upward, and began to deepen the wounds on her forearms with ragged fingernails. Within seconds, the rest had followed suit, falling to the ground and grovelling among the glass.

As there seems to be no explanation for just why the Awakened are… perpetually awake, and they draw ever closer to death; as The Dream filled with golden light and a feeling of well-being continues to call to Paul; and as he tries to find a safe place for Zoe, the mute Sleeper girl he and Tanya stumbled upon and took in, the question becomes not so much about how to survive this situation, but rather how to ride it out until the inevitable end.

 

 

The rest of this review can be found HERE!

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text 2016-09-28 13:27
Nod - Adrian Barnes

Review to come.

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text 2016-09-27 13:29
Reading progress update: I've read 256 out of 265 pages.
Nod - Adrian Barnes

As I watched her, I wondered what would become of these children when we were gone. Would they grow up into mute adults and, in turn, have mute babies of their own? If I'm to be honest, part of me recoiled slightly at the thought of a planet populated by Zoe's kind. The thought of a universally-benign species taking over the planetary reins seemed like a kind of cheat, seemed pointless. What about struggle? What about confusion and turmoil? All those tried and true character builders? What bout words?

But if I'm forced to hazard a guess, Zoe and her friends are probably just some sort of next step in evolution. In that case, I'm one of the throwbacks and my opinion doesn't count any more than that of a Neanderthal surveyed about the potential of stone wheels and harnessed fire. Ug.

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