Monday, January 10, 2011

DELIRIOUS by Daniel Palmer


Charlie Giles isn't sneaky. In fact, he's quite overt in his elimination of all obstacles in his path to the top of the high-tech world. He's ousted his business partner for using company money to fund his gambling habit, and he's fired his best quality engineer for leaking product security holes to the competition. Sounds like Mark Zuckerberg meets Julian Assange. As the flawed protagonist, Charlie isn't any more likeable than either of these two men. In fact, that would be my biggest complaint about the book is that I wasn't that concerned about Charlie's fate, but it's a thriller, after all, and character development is not the top priority. Since I'm a software developer myself, the subject matter also turned me off initially. I really prefer to read about a milieu that's not so mind-numbingly familiar, but this story is exotic in other ways. Charlie's brother, Joe, is a schizophrenic who struggles to maintain a semblance of normality. Their father, too, was schizophrenic, and now Charlie appears to be the victim either of a massive techno-conspiracy or the same mental health condition that plagues his brother, or, even more terrifying, a multiple-personality disorder. On some level, it reminded me of The Echo Maker by Richard Powers in which a man with a neurological disorder invents an outlandish conspiracy theory to explain his delusions. In this case, we assume that Charlie is ruthless but sane, and then doubt creeps in. The action is fast-paced, including a mental hospital breakout, a car submersion, and a wrong-way police chase. I may have guessed most aspects of the ending, but that just meant that I was racing to the end for confirmation.

2 comments:

Daniel said...

Patti,

Thanks for the great review! I liked how you related Charlie to a mix of Mark Zuckerberg and Julian Assange--very current! Looking forward to you reading and reviewing my future novels.

My best,

-Daniel

P.S. - The Prologue is available to view here! I'll be posting the first few chapters in the weeks to come to, so stay tuned!

My Website: Daniel Palmer Books

Daniel James Palmer said...

Hi Patti!

I now have ARCs for my new novel, HELPLESS. Let me know if you'd be interested in receiving a promotional copy and I'll put one in the mail to you ASAP. My email address is daniel@danielpalmerbooks.com. Thanks again for reviewing DELIRIOUS. I hope you'll consider giving HELPLESS a read!

http://www.amazon.com/Helpless-Daniel-Palmer/dp/075824665X/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1317753415&sr=1-1

-Daniel