Friday, November 30, 2012

Human Instinct #Review @weirdvision

Dr. Deanna Nichols is a geneticist searching for a cure to save the world. After the war nearly destroyed it by releasing an aggressive virus, it was the vaccine that killed the humanity’s chances for progress and survival. Deanna feels guilty because she has participated in creating the vaccine, and General Mackenzie never lets her forget that. 

Their luck changes when they are contacted by the convicts held in a secret military prison hidden in the arctic desert. The C deviance criminals are willing to negotiate and provide unaffected DNA samples in exchange for supplies and a visit paid by the doctor herself. Suddenly there’s hope, so Deanna embarks on a dangerous journey to a grittier reality than she had expected. 

Could a woman alone save the world?

I can't say I'm the biggest fan of the book description I pulled from Amazon. It's a bit chunky. I suppose it covers the basis of what the book's about, but still, I'm going to whine about it.

So, as per usual, I totally didn't pay attention to all the details when embarking on this review. I got to the end and was like, "What?! But I want more!"

Yeah Emily, the term "novella" means it's short. Excuse me while I face palm.

Anyhow, I rather enjoyed this little story. I'm going to spoil a detail here, not like the book description doesn't do that already, but the thingydo that has to be fixed with the human race is that the "spark of genius" has been lost.

I found this concept rather interesting. What would humanity do if faced with the impossibility of creating original ideas? Internet Explorer's issue with deciding to randomly stop working would never be solved and no one would ever invent a superglue that doesn't make me weld my fingers together. Especially if this epidemic followed a big fat war where most everything was destroyed.

So, pushing all that suckage aside (the situation suckage) we get the point were the sexy lady doctor (oh come on, you know she has to be sexy for the plot to work. Even if she weren't sexy, to a bunch of convicts who have been locked up with only mildly crazy to full batshit dudes to stimulate their biological urges, anything that could be mistaken for female would be sexy) goes to the prison full of sexually pent up, inherently violent criminals.

Even though I'm breaking down the description to be fairly base, you know this good plot seeding. Dr. Hotstuff starts poking guys with needles and it's not like before one of them decides she needs to get poked back. Sorry, there's blatant sexual tension in the story and it tends to bring out my "after 10:00 P.M. everything is a sexual innuendo" self. I'll attempt not to make anymore bad puns.

To save the good doctor from this band of randy miscreants: tall, dark, cute and broody (all ladies are suckers for this combination). The so-called "leader of the pack". The one prisoner who is a born leader and maybe doesn't really belong there.

So, one woman saving the world alone is not exactly accurate. More like a brilliant geneticist and a not-so-psycho psychopath.

Another thing I find interesting is the assumption that saving the human race equals saving the world. Just saying here...

About the Author: 

Ioana Vişan was born on July 1st, 1978, in Iaşi, Romania. Having a diploma in Computer Science and a Master's degree in Distributed Systems, she currently works as a freelance web designer.

As a child, she grew up reading westerns by Karl May and historical novels by Alexandre Dumas, gradually advancing to Isaac Asimov, Stanislaw Lem and Frank Herbert. It soon became clear that all these works, while wonderful or at least a fun read, had the same big problem: they all had to end eventually, and some of them ended badly. Well, that just wouldn’t do! The first story ever written, unfortunately never finished, was sometime during middle grade, when she didn’t know what the term fan fiction even meant.

She wrote original fiction all through high school and part of the college years, perfectly happy not to publish anything, but only to entertain her friends with her stories. After college, she got lost for a while in the fan fiction and role playing world, which didn’t help improve her writing skills much, but it sure helped her English.

Publishing had always been the plan for somewhere in the future, but as she started to approach 30 she realized that it was time to make it happen. It was probably just luck that the first text submitted to a magazine was published in Nautilus on her birthday. The story, which for some reason used to have “Freeze” as a working title, won the Cititor SF award for best Romanian sci fi story of 2008. And the rest, like they say, is history.

Her stories have been published in on-line magazines like Nautilus, Gazeta SF, Suspans, SRSFF, SFera Online, EgoPhobia, Every Day Fiction, and they have also been featured in the second AtelierKult anthology, “Dansând pe Marte şi alte povestiri fantastice” (2009), Millennium Books anthology ”Steampunk: A doua revoluţie” (2011), and SRSFF anthology ”Venus – Povestiri erotice science fiction” (2011).

For her English readers, Ioana has recently published an apocalyptic novella, "Human Instincts", as an eBook. She is currently working on a sci fi and fantasy story collection in Romanian, and a fantasy trilogy in English.

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