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Literature & Fiction

Beyond Recall - Stephen Kyle

Beyond Recall

Author: Stephen Kyle
Book title: Beyond Recall
ISBN: 0446608092
ISBN13: 978-0446608091
Publisher: Vision; 1st edition (January 15, 2000)
Language: English
Category: Genre Fiction
Rating: 4.3/5
Votes: 303
More formats: lit mbr mobi lrf

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A female Nobel Prize-winning doctor creates a deadly virus that is aimed at killing only women in America. Ironically, the doctor is threatening the world with annihilation in order to save it from Armageddon. A humanitarian who once loved her is trapped into helping her.
Reviews: (7)
happy light
Tempted to advance-order this title by a full spread ad in PW several months ago, I expected a polished medical thriller, but was disappointed to read a too-long soap opera about a wealthy Nobel prize-winning do-gooder who justifies mass-murder because her adopted son was killed in an African "ethnic cleansing" war. Unfortunately, none of the characters incite the reader to care much about them, and the longer you read, the less you care. Had the book been shorter and the self-examinations of the characters been fewer, the story could have been more entertaining. As it is, I can only say that Artemis as a threat let me down.
I enjoy books about biological disasters, and this one was very good. I thought the characters were well-developed, even if their actions were not quite believable (an ethical scientist who blackmails the world?). Still, the author managed to flesh out these people enough so that I actually sympathized with the villainess and I was willing to suspend my disbelief and accept her motivations. The pace was lightning quick, and he had an exciting climax. Frankly, I thought this book was a hundred times better than the over-hyped Cobra Event by Richard Preston.
This novel is one of the best of the "outbreak" books I've read. I picked it up at a charity store in El Paso simply based on the subject matter. I was traveling from Houston, to Albuquerque, then El Paso, and lastly back to Houston. During the trip I had four books going at the same time. However, the minute I picked up Beyond Recall, I read it cover to cover, only stopping to eat and fly. I had soon learned that Stephen Kyle is a master novelist whose work is deserving of the very best review possible. His characters are life-sized, and Mr. Kyle keeps the reader engrossed with his fast-paced narrative. I look forward with great interest to reading his other novels. Kudos to Mr. Kyle for a job well done.
I wish there'd been more science and less beltway-insider in this book. I picked it up thinking it was a medical thriller and got far more than a fair dose of political wheedling.

At some points, there is some great characterization and insight into what makes the people in the story tick. At other points, everyone in the book is just a boorish moron who selfishly spins their wheels for no real reason. The relationship between Tory and Jack is completely forced, making the ending feel just as hokey. Rachel's a real heartless humdinger too.

If the final couple of chapters had been left off, it would have been a much better book. Not good, not bad, this inbetweener is just the type of book to fill time on an airplane or long trip.
If an author's job is to get his reader to react, then Mr. Kyle has been extremely successful. There are two stories here. One, of incredible terrorism, that gets you into the book and two of "the end justifies the means" that gets your blood boiling. It is the latter that made me want to throw my computer(I had the e-book version) against the wall, because I disagree with the idea of negotiating at the point of a gun. In any case, it was an ejoyable read, which is what one wants out of a good book.
Lots of "buts" in this one. Action-packed BUT implausible, plot line interesting BUT dumb, a doctor BUT a murdere. Why could't a Nobel Prize winner create a more humane / faster method for death. But that's all beside the point since the premis is already dated! Birth rates around the world are dropping. Some European countries are actually losing population & the UN Commission on Population has revised downward world population projections just the past year. Also, it is highly implausible that "women's education programs" will produce the desired results. For something that massive one needs to modify the water supply in some countries. Still, suspend your imagination and read it for the sheer entertainment.
This book makes monsters out of brilliant woman and exalts less brilliant man. This author wrote a book which feeds hatred towards women. Just switch the two main characters and make Tory a man. What will you get? A story which reflects the real life! Women in real life are killed by men. Women killing women is highly unrealistic! Why I gave it five stars? Execution of the story: brilliant! But the author should update his knowledge on the topic "Violence against women"!
This is a truly wonderful book: a thriller with well rounded characters, moral ambiguity and something to say. I can't think of another writer who does it better.
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