Book Review | Lexicon : a novel by Max Barry

book cover Lexicon : a novel by Max BarryAnother great read from Max Barry, Lexicon begins at full throttle as a man is being kidnapped from the airport by two suits. They are pursued from multiple angles and the victim is sure he is not the guy they’re after. Barry’s newest novel will please fans as he’s crafted a slightly fantastical story with realistic interpersonal relationships and a hint of love.

Vaguely reminiscent of Stephen King’s Desperation and Robin Sloan’s Mr. Penumbra’s 24-hour Bookstore, Lexicon is a gripping, action-packed thriller that will keep you guessing in piecing together the puzzle. The basic premise is that words carry neurological stimuli and can be used to bypass the brain’s natural barriers in order to control people’s actions. An individual’s personality dictates which specific words will render him defenseless, but the discovery of a bareword that effects everyone is a real catalyst game-changer. Chapters alternate focus between two main characters until paths ultimately converge. This book is a bit of a departure for Barry and most critics will probably think that is a good thing, while long time readers may be wondering if he’s jumped on the mainstream train. Holds are prevalent, but check it out from a nearby library.

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About amy de simone
Amy is an active volunteer, traveler and photographer. She is interested in art, libraries, museums and nonprofits. She holds an M.A. in Library & Information Studies and a B.A. in Italian Language & Literature from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

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