Misspent Youth by Peter F. Hamilton (2002)

General, Reckons, Reviews

Long story short: Well loved genius IT/physics guy now grown old is selected first for super expensive (trillions of euros) rejuvenation treatment that leaves him biologically in his early to mid 20s. He shags everything he can, including his own son’s girlfriend. Hilarity, rubber bullets, and teargas ensue. I’m not going to worry about spoilers here because #1 this isn’t a new release and #2…

You know how some books are awesome? I mean really. You’re reading and you think “damn, I’m past half way, I wish this book could last longer.”

This? This is not one of those books. Not by a long shot. Even a few glasses of a decent Australian Semillon aren’t tempering my feelings for this fucking book.

It turns out that Hamilton is completely arse at writing dialogue.

I’ve read other novels of his from before and after this one was published that didn’t suck nearly as much, so I’m not sure exactly what’s going on here. And in fact, that makes it doubly disappointing as I’ve previously felt quite positive towards his work. The Greg Mandel trilogy, for instance, are all pretty good. I liked The Reality Dysfunction, The Neutronium Alchemist, and The Naked God too. And Fallen Dragon is really good (for the genre).

As well as the simply apalling dialog there’s the question of all the dirty sex. It sucks. When I see this kind of excessive boring sex in a novel I can’t help but think that the author was just jonesing for some ass that night. Why didn’t the editor sort it out to save my suffering?

So what went wrong here? I don’t know, but it really does feel like it wasn’t edited. If that’s the case, well it didn’t work for Anne Rice, and it sure hasn’t worked for Hamilton.

Thank jebus that it’s relatively short at just 350ish pages.

There are some really great ideas, but the execution is so bad you really shouldn’t bother.

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