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This review is from: The Universe versus Alex Woods (Kindle Edition)
This is Gavin Extence's debut novel. And what a talent he clearly is.
In his own words Gavin likes books that "deals with big issues in a funny way"; 'The Universe Versus Alex Woods' is certainly that. It's acclaim in and around book clubs and literary houses should be enough to get you to read this, out of intrigue if anything else.
The book is narrated by Alex Woods, a fictional adolescent nerd. Mostly it seems Alex is an innocent bystander in his own affairs and his disposition is that of stark rationality, symptomatic of his scientific background. A chance event leads him off down the deterministic route of life. Ultimately the book is deigned to lead towards the logical and scientific interpretation of a classical moral dilemma. But along the way Gavin (Alex) flirts with a smorgasbord of subject matters juxtaposing astronomically out-of-this-world objects with bluntly humane and intricate relationships here on this planet.
At times exciting and for the most part highly amusing, 'The Universe Versus Alex Woords' is a quirky coming of age story that delves into determinism, eternalism and the universe. Alex's honest narrative is meticulously detailed and regularly provides insightful wisdom that will have you underlining and highlighting. Whilst (unrealistically) his wisdom significantly surpasses his age the insights of this book are plentiful and affecting.
I don't want to give much of the plot away as it does develop into a neat little page-turner, but the real excellence of this books stems from it's anthropological insight. A book that, if you give it a chance, will reaffirm your faith in human nature.