Two book blog posts in a day – bliss (I have bad hayfever so am only capable of reading – whilst simultaneously holding a tissue over my nose).
Flashforward on TV never totally grabbed me, it was a bit too American and those FBI agents annoyed me, so I stopped watching it after a while, although the husband continued to do so and if I happened to be in the room whilst he was watching it, I knew just about enough to follow what was going on. So when I heard that the Flashforward book was quite different, I was interested.
And Flashforward the book is very different, no annoying FBI agents for a start (phew!) and instead it concentrates on the two scientists Lloyd Simcoe and Theo Procopides who work in CERN, where most of the action takes place. Rather bizarrely, even though one of the scientists in Flashforward the TV series had the same name, when picturing the characters as I read I imagined the actor who plays the scientist Simon Campus (Dominic Monaghan) playing Lloyd Simcoe in the book and the actor who plays Lloyd Simcoe (Jack Davenport) in the TV series playing (in my head) the character of Theo Procopides in the book. In the book Lloyd Simcoe in the more senior, more together of the two scientists and Theo the junior partner, whereas in the TV show it’s the character of Simon Campus pulling the strings and is, for want of a better word, slightly more worldly. So it’s weird, like they’ve taken the two characters and swapped them around.
Of course the names are not the only difference; there is no sinister plot in the book, the Flashforward is the result of an accident and most importantly the resulting Flashforward is not of a few months ahead but instead thirty years, therefore Flashforward the book is a lot more sci-fi than the TV series. There is a lot of discussion of the theoretical physics that may or could be involved, with lots of physicist characters sitting round in the staff canteen giving lectures to other physicist characters (and who would therefore already know – that always bugs me) about various interpretations on reality, free will and quantum dynamics and to be honest after a while I was beginning to skim read those bits, as they were a little boring and didn’t seem to be advancing the plot.
There are some similarities to, there is a character (who like the FBI character in the TV series) knows he’s going to be murdered because he doesn’t get a Flashforward and there are various romances.
Overall it was an interesting read, if not initially attention grabbing (the opening chapter with its geographical description of CERN read like the very long opening of a slightly sleepy New Scientist article).I don’t read much sci-fi for adults and I felt slightly jaded when I got close to the end of the book and there was a sequence which seems to be in all the sci-fi books I do read, something I always equate to that weird sequence at the end of 2001. But despite all that, worth reading.