Eidolon belongs to the “crappy particle accelerator based thriller fiction” genre. The omission of the word “science” from before fiction that was quite intentional. The highlight of this book was the “whaaaaaat” quality of the plot, which I will admit was entertaining, and will describe in brief with this list and in length with the following paragraph:
Things that should not appear in “good particle accelerator based thriller (science) fiction”:
- Black holes
- Dead people
- Dead people with super powers
- The New World Order
- Pocket dimensions
- Demons in pocket dimensions
- Eidolons, Mindspace, and other Cryptic Yet Vague Purposefully Capitalized Words
The plot is literally nonsensical. A scientist might describe it as an object that would decollimate if it were a stream of particles. There is a particle collider, the Large Hadron Collider, and our main character has his dark matter research project funding suddenly disappear, so he heads home and hangs out with his family, and with an old family friend, except the old family friend died a day earlier, and at the wake some strange, shadowy men give him an invitation from an ominous man to go work at the particle collider when it switches up to a higher energy level. There’s some kind of a romantic subplot going on with his ex-girlfriend throughout the novel, except perhaps describing it as an anti-romantic subplot is more accurate. The main character takes a helicopter ride to the Large Hadron particle collider, which he has actually been paid to sabotage, except he meets his old family friend, who is dead, but actually came back to life as a living ghost, along with a whole host of living ghosts from throughout time, one of whom also happens to be the main character who as it happens died on that helicopter ride when the helicopter crashed without him realizing that he had died instead of just thinking he had a near-death experience. And so now our main character has living ghost powers, just like his sister, who his ex-girlfriend saw repeatedly after his sister died, but whom the main character has trouble convincing that there are ghosts. So he changes his mind about changing his mind about changing his mind and doesn’t sabotage the particle collider, which coincidentally is where his dad works, except while he is receiving ghost superpower lessons from the living ghosts, the villains sabotage the particle collider anyways, which means that eventually he has to sabotage their sabotage of the particle collider, except that the shadowy antagonist kidnapped his ex-girlfriend and dad, so he has to travel to a pocket dimension (i.e. hell) where he can defeat Satan (i.e. the shadowy antagonist) to rescue his ex-girlfriend and dad, who were being mind controlled, along with a few hundred thousand other people, by the shadowy antagonist so their minds could create a quantum field (i.e. hell) from which he could draw power to eventually rule over the earth. Oh, and then the main character finds out he’s a ghost on literally the last page. Whooops.
So if you are feeling somewhat disoriented from that experience you just read through, yeah, that’s what Eidolon felt like.
This isn’t a terrible book. The writing isn’t bad, but it’s eh. There was nothing really extraordinary, and there was a lot that felt trite. The characters were kinda eh too. I felt like the off the rails crazy plot drew my attention away from anything else going on, otherwise I would probably have sharper comments.
This book was published in 2013 by Solaris Books, an imprint of Rebellion Publishing. Coincidentally, that’s the year CERN shut down the LHC while upgrading it to run at the higher energy level.
Cover Art Review: This cover art is pretty bad-ass looking, except that the main character’s head makes him look like he is a kobold or something. Which honestly would fit right in with the plot.