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Review: Flashforward

Flashforward 1999 was written by Canadian author Robert J. Sawyer.  When I picked it up yesterday, I only knew that the author was Canadian and that it was Sci-Fi.  As I started reading I realized it took place in 2009, but was confused by a reference to Windows 2009 operating system (Vista?).  Then I checked the cover, and realized it was written in 1999.

The idea behind the book is quite interesting.  In 2009 at CERN’s Large Hadron Collider (LHC) the search for the Higgs boson (God Particle) caused a 2 minute flash forward.  This flash forward enabled every human on earth to see through the eyes of their future selves for 2 minutes.  Those who were dead or asleep did not get to see anything.  The fallout of seeing yourself 21 years in the future caused much concern and some good changes.  For example, after seeing that there was no point in fighting, India and Pakistan came to a peace agreement.

The lead scientist behind the experiment, Lloyd Simcoe believes, and shared his belief that, the future is fixed and absolutely determined.  His junior scientist, Theo Procopides, discovers that his brother kills himself after realizing his artistic dreams do not come true and will work at a restaurant in the future.  This leaves both scientists to concede that the future is not fixed or the brother would not have had a future vision.

This book has a lot of Canadian references and the lead scientist, Lloyd, is Canadian.  I particularly love the note about Presidents Choice brand not being Prime Ministers Choice at the local supermarket.

This is a fun book and I loved reading it.  I am going to find other by this author.  Oh, and I also discovered that this book was made into a TV show of the same name last year.  Perhaps I will see if I can find it in re-runs!



About Gordon

Gordon is a Consultant, Trainer, CAD/GIS Integration Specialist and Web Mapping Integrator for Arrow Geomatics Inc.

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