Saturday, March 22, 2008

Starfish (Rifters Trilogy #1) by Peter Watts

From the Publisher
A huge international corporation has developed a power facility at the bottom of the deep San Juan de Fuca Rift in the Pacific Ocean to exploit geothermal power. They have sent a bioengineered crew - people who have been altered to withstand the pressure and breathe the seawater - to live and work in this weird, fertile undersea darkness. Unfortunately, the only people suitable for long-term employment at the bottom of the ocean in these experimental power stations are psychotic, some of them in unpleasant ways. None of the crew will ever be allowed to return to the surface. One of the central questions is how many of them can survive, or will be allowed to survive, long enough to become sane, while worldwide disaster approaches from below.

My Opinion
I am not really sure where to start when it comes to this book. I read it. I enjoyed it, kinda. It is really hard to explain. It is an interesting read, but it almost seems like parts are missing. It does eventually come together at the end and you understand what is going on, but it is a bit of a disjointed journey.

It is set in an undetermined future. The world is not a good place, but the book never really explains why or how it is what it is. The story centers on a group of 'Rifters' who are human beings who have been changed/enhanced to be able to survive life at the bottom of the deep ocean. This is where they live and tend to some sort of deep sea energy collectors. This is another thing that is a bit hazy and not well explained in the book. The reasons that they are chosen for this assignment are suggested. They are all psychotic in some ways. Coming from abusive homes, or abusers themselves. It seems that it is all an experiment, but again not sure what the idea is behind it.

The story then seems to take a bit of a turn when the Rifters start changing and adapting to life in the ocean. It then becomes apparent that these changes may be a result of some sort of dormant life form that is a danger to the human race. The bacterial parasitic lifeform takes up residence in the humans and seems to be such a threat to the human race that destruction seems to be the only option.

All in all a strange story, but interesting enough to keep reading. The next book's back cover leads me to believe that it will take up right where this one lets off, but looks more interesting as it seems to deal with an form of apocalypse that the world faces due to the attempted destruction of this bacteria.

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