I’ve been reaching outside of my comfort zone lately and have found that there is a wealth of amazing literature I’ve been ignoring for far too long.
I decided to read EXODUS 2022 by Kenneth Bennett, because I read and loved his first novel, Gaia Wars, back in 2011. Although his first book was YA, this new one is more of a thriller. The common thread is this author’s love for the environment and his cool, tech-savvy way of bringing that message out without whopping the reader over the head with it.
EXODUS 2022 starts off at a full gallop and doesn’t slow down for a second. When Joe Stanton wakes up screaming for his lost daughter, Lorna Gwin, only to find out that he never even had a daughter and that there’s some disembodied voice sending him telepathic images and communications, well… I for one didn’t see it coming. The owner of the voice was a great surprise and took the book to a whole new level.
I’ll confess to not much caring for Stanton—though he’s a likeable enough guy. I grew up in a very conservative religious family, and although Stanton is meant to be a progress Episcopalian priest, he just didn’t act priesty enough for me. Overnight trips with his girlfriend? I just couldn’t get past that.
His girlfriend, Ella, was fantastic, relatable, and interesting to follow. The owner of the voice was my second favorite character, and I kept finding myself wondering how the author was able to develop her so well. What kind of research did he have to do in order to get into the head of…?
Nope! No spoilers here.
My favorite character was the villain, Sheldon Beck, a rich boy businessman who will always get his way, no matter whom he has to torture and kill. The more evil he became, the more I loved him. And his thought capture technology was both surreally sci-fi and something I could see happening before my lifetime is through.
The characters were very well developed given their diversity and how plot-driven this novel was.
To sum up, EXODUS 2022 is full of action, intrigue, cool future technology, great characters, and a fantastic message that we all need to hear before it’s too late. I <3 you, Earth!
About the book: Joe Stanton is in agony. Out of his mind over the death of his young daughter. Or so it seems.
Unable to contain his grief, Joe loses control in public, screaming his daughter’s name and causing a huge scene at a hotel on San Juan Island in Washington State. Thing is, Joe Stanton doesn’t have a daughter. Never did. And when the authorities arrive they blame the 28-year-old’s outburst on drugs.
What they don’t yet know is that others up and down the Pacific coast—from the Bering Sea to the Puget Sound—are suffering identical, always fatal mental breakdowns.
With the help of his girlfriend—the woman he loves and dreams of marrying—Joe struggles to unravel the meaning of the hallucination destroying his mind. As the couple begins to perceive its significance—and Joe’s role in a looming global calamity—they must also outwit a billionaire weapons contractor bent on exploiting Joe’s newfound understanding of the cosmos, and outlast the time bomb ticking in Joe’s brain.
Get EXODUS 2022 through Amazon or Barnes & Noble.
About the author: Kenneth G. Bennett is the author of the young adult novels, THE GAIA WARS and BATTLE FOR CASCADIA, and the new sci-fi thriller, EXODUS 2022. A wilderness enthusiast who loves backpacking, skiing and kayaking, Ken enjoys mysteries, science fiction, action adventure stories and, most especially, novels that explore the relationship between humans and the wild. He lives on an island in the Pacific Northwest with his wife and son and two hyperactive Australian Shepherds. Connect with Kenneth on his website, Facebook, Twitter, or GoodReads.