Friday, 23 November 2012


 Title: Kinesis
Author: Ethan Spier
Pages: 238 (ebook)

When two men break into Leonard Samson’s house, beat him unconscious and murder his six-year-old son, the police arrive to a gruesome scene. But they are shocked to find the mutilated bodies of the two intruders in the front room of Leonard’s house, while he waits in the kitchen with the surviving members of his family.
Clarissa Chapman is a DCI of Psychokinetic Investigations, a new area of police work, instigated after the first genuine case of psychokinesis was discovered, some fifteen years earlier. The Samson case is brought to her attention due to the strange way in which the two intruders were killed. She suspects Leonard Samson is a Kinetic.
All Kinetics are blessed with a gift to move objects with only the power of their mind. But it is also a horrific curse. Within a few years of discovering their ability, they all develop violent insanity and, for this reason, are locked away in specially designed prisons for the benefit of public safety.
After discovering that the authorities suspect him of being a Kinetic, Leonard Samson runs; unaware that the police are not the only ones pursuing him. 
As the days pass by, Clarissa becomes increasingly aware that certain aspects of the Samson case just do not add up...

Leonard Samson is a man on the run for a crime he didn't commit, that he says he was physically impossible of committing because he isn't a PK - someone with telekinetic powers. This book follows him trying to escape the law; Amir Sohal, the bounty hunter, and Clarissa Chapman, the police officer, who are looking for him; and Sean Hagan, an escaped PK convict who is looking for revenge on the woman who caught him.

The beginning of this book was a little bit amazing. I made the mistake of starting to read it on the train, and I'm sure the first two chapters would have had me in tears if I'd been reading it at home. It's heart-wrenching and a bit horrifying, but not too graphic. It throws you in at the deep end emotively, and you can't help but feel for the family you're introduced to in the midst of disaster. The first third as a whole is fast moving and intriguing, though unfortunately the pace isn't kept up and it slows rather after this.

Set in the near future, this is a world where psychokinesis (PK) was discovered to exist around the turn of the millennium. But there is a horrible twist, for those who develop this ability also develop incredibly violent tendencies and go mad, usually within a couple of years of the onset. We're told of some of the early incidences and research in mega info-dumps. Like, pages and pages long. It's disguised as extracts from a text book one of the characters is reading, but not very well. And it's not that exciting. I'm sure there must have been better and cleaner ways of getting the information across. Between this and the slowing of the story itself the middle section of the story struggles.

And unfortunately, there is the same problem with the back stories of the characters. We are entering into people's lives often halfway through some major stuff going on, and all the information is just chucked at us, not even with it being told to someone else - it's literally just...there.

The four central characters are quite good - their motives make sense and they usually make logical decisions. Some of the secondary characters less so, but the story wouldn't move forward so well otherwise. Still, Leonard and Clarissa are the only two you really get any sort of a feel for past the immediate. Amir is all about the hunt, and Sean is all about revenge. That is what they are in the story: nothing else. Leonard you get to know a little, and you can't help but feel sorry for him from the off, whilst you learn about Clarissa's life and all the things she is trying to deal with on top of her job. And from the ending of this book, you know it's only going to get worse from this point in.

You don't really get to see much of the actual PK power in action - understandably, since most people who have are crazy by the time we meet them! - which is a shame, because what you do see is well written and quite realistic. It's something people have to work for, and they don't just crook a finger and send houses flying about. It exhausts them, and can have serious physical affects.

And it was interesting seeing the social effects of the discovery of PK and the mental problems it eventually causes. People with this ability are shunned, and locked up in a high security prison as soon as they are discovered. The ethics of this is obviously questionable, for obviously most of those imprisoned haven't actually done anything wrong at the point they are locked up: does knowing that they are going to become violent give the government the right to lock them up in that way? It would have been interesting to see how the laws about this were brought about, and whether there was anybody fighting this.

The end of this book was very good, and there was a nice, though slightly sad, ending sequence and an intriguing epilogue. I'm assuming it's a series from the ending, and I'll probably keep an eye out for the next one, for although I'm not all that attached to the any of the characters I'm kinda interested to see where the story goes, what the consequences are, and to see some more of this world.

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