What dreams may come true? Early Risers by Jasper Fforde - review
Recommended if you are looking for a light, funny but engaging read and you are willing to sacrify realism and logic for the sake of enjoyment.
Not recommended if you are looking for a deeply meaningfull novel or realism is a must for you even when you read a dystopia.
So, I have to admit this. The reason why I decided to read this book was...the cover.
I received Early Riser by Jasper Fforde ( Hodder & Stoughton) from the publisher and to be honest, I immediatly thought " why on earth they sent it to me?". Not sure if it was totally at random or if someone genuinely thought I could enjoy it but I am glad they did.
I am always on a mission to diversify my reading and get away from the usual back-and-forth between crime fiction and epic fantasy and Early Riser seemed a good opportunity. This is also my first Jasper Fforde book.
So what's the book about?
Well is not easy to describe so bear with me. I'll start saying that this is a sort of dystopic novel. The plot is set in Wales, on a time where due to climate changes, the humankind hibernates through the coldest months of winter. Charlie Worthing is just starting off his working life as an apprentice Winter Consul, a taskforce that staying away throughout the winter watch over things and protect asleep civilians making sure that the majority of the population will wake up intact in Spring. Stranded in the dangerous Sector 12 after being tasked with delivering a Nightwalker ( let's say is a kind of zombie ) for reprogramming, Charlie finds himself caught up in a conspiracy involving viral dreams and a battle between an illegal activist group named RealSleep, and the potent pharmaceutical company, HiberTech, that controls worldwide hibernation with a drug called Morphenox.
It's been a long time since I read a book that has just been fun.
Truth to be told, I did not got hooked initially and set the book aside for days untill I casually came across the audiobook on Audible and decided to download it for my morning walk. I am glad I did because it took me no time to get involved in what I later discovered to be a staggering world building plenty of twists able to satisfy my thist for conspiracy and intrigues . The fact that they surprisingly fit with the bizzare storyline was also a huge plus.
Early Riser is an hilarious, fast-paced novel that reminds me a lot of Terry Pratchett and Douglas Adams works. This is not a book for everyone as it requires a certain amount of suspension of disbelief by the reader. Fforde style will either have you willing to go along with his peculiar way of looking and commenting on the world, leaving behind any sense of logic, or utterly annoy you after a couple of pages.
For me, this was one of a kind and I very pleasant read.