Book Reviews,  Detective and Mystery,  Fantasy,  Science Fiction

Book Review: The Dispatcher

The Dispatcher (The Dispatcher, #1)The Dispatcher by John Scalzi
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A big concept in a small story. That ratio is perfect, since we the readers are expected to not only accept an absurd phenomenon, but embrace it. We’re not alone though, as the story characters are being asked to do the same thing. No one knows WHY people can be murdered and a few seconds later show up alive and naked in their beds.

Through the method of hit or miss (see what I did there) over the past dozen-ish years, people have figured out the rules, and how to play around with this violent new lease on life. Like anything else having to do with society, of course we decided to regulate it. And that’s where the dispatchers come in.

I get the feeling that author John Scalzi might have been just going about his day, maybe washing his car, when he had a brainstorm, dropped his soapy sponge, and ran into the house to write it down. This shortish story feels like a well-written infodump. I can forgive that. There’s a lot we need to know, and he dumps it in an entertaining manner.

In fact, I found it interesting enough that without pausing, I cruised right into book two of this three book series. I’ll be finishing that today, and I have a feeling that I’ll be doing the same with book three.

One last thing: I woke up in the wee hours this morning with a horrifying scenario in my head about how this concept might play out in a certain type of wartime situation. I’m not going to go into details but will just say it felt real enough that I had to keep playing the scenario around in my head to discover all the possible outcomes. Wow. Thanks a lot John, I’d like that chunk of sleep time back, please!

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Lori Alden Holuta lives between the cornfields of Mid-Michigan, where she grows vegetables and herbs when she’s not writing, editing, or playing games with a cat named Chives.

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