BOOK REVIEW – Genesis by Bernard BeckettGenesis by Bernard Beckett
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The island Republic has emerged from a ruined world. Its citizens are safe but not free, until a man named Adam Forde rescues a girl from the sea. Fourteen-year-old Anax thinks she knows her history. She'd better. She's sat facing three Examiners and her five-hour examination has just begun. The subject is close to her heart: Adam Forde, her long-dead hero.


*drinks a tenth cup of coffee*

God, being sleep-deprived is so very much like being drunk, without the laugh. I hate it. ANYWAY. Reading Genesis must have worn my few remaining energy cells out, because I have a hard time typing on my keyboard. What the hell?! I’d better go to the point. Here’s how it went :

[fast backward of the hologram]

The EXAMINER studies me carefully during an indefinite length of time. As I was warned during my training, his features don’t betray any emotion and –

Alright, this is bullshit. The Examiner is my boyfriend, is slightly frowning, looking both curious and amused.

BF : What is it?

ME, suddenly turning to face him : Whaaat?

BF : You’ve been staring into space for 15 minutes.

ME : I did?

BF : You did.

ME : That’s because I just read the most AMAZING book!

BF : Oh? What’s it about?

ME : I CANNOT SAY, (emerge from my lethargy and look frenetically at the novel page on Goodreads) I have to find it in French and then you can read it. (start whispering, for some unknown reason) I cannot say anything, you have to go blind –

BF : It’s a Thriller then?

ME, in a high pitched voice : Not reallyyyyy, more like Science-Fiction blended with Philosophy and Ethics? But then, the whole story revolves around the interview of the main character who wishes to be admitted in an Academy we know nothing about, in a world we know nothing about, and she’s being questioned about an History we know nothing about …

BF : Huh, it seems a little confusing?

ME : Yes and no, actually. Confusing does seem like a good word to describe it, because we have no idea what’s going on, but it wasn’t a problem for me whatsoever so I don’t really know? Perhaps it was just my kind of weird?

BF : You didn’t sleep though, and you still read it in one sitting, so –

ME : YES! First the writing was so addictive and the questions – the QUESTIONS – they talked to me, you know? I mean, it’s a little frightening to see how relevant they are, especially lately – but always, really – we do let politics and medias tell us that complex situations and problems can be explained by simple causes – and resolved by simple actions, without regards to decency and common sense. Look at the terrorist attacks, the increase of unemployment, the financial crisis and how politics keep looking for one group of people, one country, one system to blame, forever using fear…

BF : Wait, I thought it was science-fiction?

ME : It is, but it’s so very relatable all the same, in the fact that there are no instant answers that would explain or solve everything? That it makes you think about what it means to be a human? Honestly, if you’re not afraid of unusual reads and can cope with delaying your understanding, you’re going to LOVE this.

(clutch the book to my chest and smile in a borderline crazy way, then stare into space again)