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  • Caleb Teal

Book Review: Entropy by Michael McGinty

Synopsis

As seen on Amazon

Our extinction is inevitable ...

Not through some random apocalyptic event, but by the natural decline of the human swarm until its eventual demise. So says entropy in the second law of thermodynamics.

Bill Bartles is one of the manifold data washers from the Department of Receipt and Organization of New Content, or DRONC as they prefer to be called. His purpose? Locate new information, clean it up, and add it to the Infinity Drive. Or as he often quips: Find all the knowledge ever created by mankind, strip out the crap, and save it to a little black box, no bigger than a shoebox. That’s his brief, simple and sweet.

Bartles has it all: a captivating companion, an inner-city apartment mid-way up the tall-tower, and an imminent promotion. For him, life is great—except for his obsession with entropy and its promise that nothing lasts forever.

When he digs too deep into the forbidden archives of Aleph-1—the avant-garde CPU that controls the Infinity Drive—Bartles’ perfect life is shattered, plunging him into an unrecognizable world of blood-red wastelands, empty mega-cities, and receding oceans. A dangerous place inhabited by new apex predators, where the remnants of humanity struggle on the brink of extinction.

Now, locked in the fight of our lives against entropy, Bill Bartles must decide if saving the last of humanity is worth losing the Infinity Drive, and with it, all the knowledge of mankind …



My Review

Entropy the debut novel of Michael McGinty, telling an amazing story that I quickly fell in love with. At times I even found it hard to put down. It’s a hard-science post-apocalyptic story in a future far from now filled with interesting concepts and possibilities.


The story is fascinating, and the setting creative. The story is from the point of view of one Mr. Bill Bartels and takes starts out in a world of complete and perfect order. It is a technological paradise that Bill finds out to be a lie. In his attempts to understand social entropy, he digs too deep and then finds himself thrust into the real world, where life isn’t as perfect as he was used to. It is a world where humanity has been almost wiped out, and the earth is near complete death.


While reading I was so engrossed in the book, that I found it hard to put down when I needed to. The storytelling kept raising questions which needed answering, which left me wanting to read farther to find the answers, even when I needed to work on other things.


Given that this is a hard-science setting, it should be expected that everything in the book, or at least most of it, is scientifically realistic. I can not say if that is the case, as my knowledge on some of the topics is limited. However, all throughout the book scientific concepts are described in ways that are easy to understand by the average reader, allowing for the reader to learn things that they haven’t already known.


I am especially at awe with the second chapter. Without giving spoilers, all throughout chapter two, the technical expertise of McGinty as an engineer is portrayed in the writing, though written in a way that makes it feel mystical to the average reader. Though as a tech-minded person myself, I found myself wondering if some of the things said were possible or accurate. Though I admit my technical knowledge is not as much as McGinty’s.


In several points throughout the book, McGinty diverts from the regular writing style to do something more experimental. Examples are the portions of dialog by the unknown digital entities that are surrounded by square brackets. Or during a certain tech-based vision, the end-of-file sentence enders. As a writer who constantly experiments with new ways to do a book, I applaud McGinty for this creativity. However, I would not be surprised if some people found this jarring, or difficult to read. However, from me, I won’t complain. Creativity is important to me, and this shows thinking outside of the box.


Overall, the story of the book is interesting and engaging, if not a very hopeless seeming. But it’s a post apocalyptical story, so hopelessness is expected. I would be more upset if there was not a hopeless feeling.


So for a star rating, I’d have to say 5 Stars. This is an amazing book that I can’t stop thinking about, and I definitely recommend it to readers and book lovers. I am eager to see where Michael McGinty goes next with his writing.


If you are interested in the book, check out the following links:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0BBF7T63N

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/62607619-entropy




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