I just finished reading “Into the Vast” by D.J. Edwardson. I had the privilege to feature the author on my blog back in November and after reading his answers and the description of his book, I was intrigued enough to purchase a copy and read it.
“Into the Vast” was a captivating read, and very different from anything I’ve ever read before. It was definitely a true sci-fi in the tradition of Isaac Asimov’s “Foundation” series. The writing style was descriptive and well-paced, reminding me a bit of George MacDonald… if he had been a sci-fi author.
Although the story starts out a little slow, the main character (Adan) pulls you into his story and you soon find yourself wanting to know who he is every bit as much as he does. The twists at the end were surprising, and although I sort of had an inkling about the big one coming, there were others that took me completely by surprise.
When Adan wakes up, he has no idea who he is. His memories have been erased, and he is a blank slate. The reader follows Adan through his recovery, his “escape” from the people who have stolen his memories, and out into a wilderness that he is completely unprepared to face. Will, the man who orchestrates his escape, has an agenda that he needs Adan’s help with in order to complete…
One of the things that struck me as being very neat about this book is that Adan is very like a child who has just been born. Everything is new to him. He is an adult, and has the motor skills and ability to communicate of an adult, but in everything else he is like a child. He has no context for anything, no experience, no memories. As you follow him on his adventure, this can at times be frustrating for the reader because the author has been very careful to describe everything Adan sees as if he is seeing it for the first time, with no context to draw from as he looks at things. And yet, despite the fact that this can be frustrating – it makes the world a little hard to imagine – it is also incredibly brilliant, and really helps you understand Adan and the way he thinks and why he is the way he is. His deepest yearning is to retrieve his memories. He has no idea who to trust and who not to trust. The person he bonds the most with is a young child. All of this makes sense if you can remember who Adan is and what has happened to him.
The technology of this world is fascinating. Despite the great differences between this world and our own, the author does a great job of explaining it so that the reader doesn’t get lost or confused.
Overall, this was an extremely interesting read and I hope the author finishes the series so I can find out how the story ends!