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A suburban house in Oklahoma vanishes into a roaring abyss. A supertanker at sea suffers a fiery destruction. A blast in China drills a gigantic cavern into a mountainside. A severed arm plummets from the sky in Missouri.
Could these catastrophes possibly be related? Intrepid geologist Dacey Livingstone is nearly killed by her first attempt to plumb the mystery-a perilous descent into a house-swallowing sinkhole. Still determined, she joins with eccentric physicist Gerald Meier in a quest that takes them from the ocean's depths to interstellar space.
What are these exotic "wormholes" that threaten Earth? Can their secrets be discovered, their power even harnessed? Or will they spawn a celestial monster that will annihilate the planet?
I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Review by Travis Starnes
One of the few sci-fi novels I have read that is set in the current day, Wormholes has a lot going for it. Focusing on a geologist and an absent-minded astrophysicist trying to figure out a series of unexplained natural events the title makes a nice blend of science and thriller. Of course given the title it will come as no surprise that the events are caused by wormholes but it is still a good ride watching these two figure out what is going on.
Knowing that the author spent his previous career in the world of science explains why the science in this book is very solid and well detailed. Everything that happens in this novel comes off as completely believable and if I had not known some of the science covered beforehand, the parts of the book where he jumps from actual science into speculation would have all seemed like fact. He also does a good job with the thriller aspects of this book. The chase for answers and then solutions is interesting and at times pushed me to read faster in order to find out what was going to happen next. There are parts of this book that strongly reminded me of Carl Sagan’s Contact, both in the way the science is approached and in how Meredith dealt with the government and scientific community’s reactions to the main characters and their quest.
The characters were fairly well written and enjoyable to read. In some places his two leads are a little two-dimensional but they have just enough depth that I can get over that and it doesn’t detract from the story. The real character worth reading about in this book is the wormholes themselves. The author does an excellent job of showing how amazing acts of nature can destroy and wreck our structured environment. Meredith seemed to have a certain glee when writing the scenes of carnage and devastation.
That might be where the real big fault I have with this book comes from. The book takes a very long time to get going. The story didn’t feel like it really started until almost forty percent through reading it, which might be the longest set up I have ever read in a story. While I can understand the need to set up these wormholes and their destructive power Mr. Meredith seems to be a bit over enamored with this setup. We could have done with just 2 scenes showing us their power, say the opening scene and the destruction of the super-tanker. That would have been enough to get what was going on, give the main characters something to investigate, and set the stage. Unfortunately the author felt the need to write many other instances of wormholes causing havoc. I get that he wanted to show the difference aspects of the wormholes in order to set up later events, but those could of have been condensed into just a couple of examples and the result would have been the same. As it is the reader has to slog through the first half of the book waiting for something interesting to happen.
However, if you can make it through all of the setup, once the story gets going it really moves at a fast pace and is worth reading. Dennis Meredith is a good writer and has the ability to keep the reader engaged when he wants to. While not my favorite sci-fi book it was none the less an enjoyable read and one I would recommend to anyone who likes hard science fictions or books like Contact.