Andy Remic’s Quake is true to the legacy of his earlier novel Spiral. The reader is returned to a world in extreme conflict sometime in the not too distant future where national boundaries are almost meaningless and the fight between good and evil is for the very safety of the planet. While you could conceivably read Quake without reading Spiral there would be so much that you would be missing in terms of back story that it probably isn’t the best approach to take.
Despite weighing in at 573 pages Quake is a fast summer read. It is like its predecessor reliant on a generous reader willing to suspend disbelief to a shocking level. It’s not so much that the premise of human/insect hybrids attempting to take over the world is hard to take as it is that people could talk and think the way they do at times in Quake. Sometimes it is like reading an old time Hollywood action serial script that never got shot for obvious reasons. That too is the strength of Remic’s stories they move with speed and they are very cinematic in the way the story progresses. It is easy to visualize the people, places and weapons in the story because Remic has a gift for description. That gift for descriptive text is sometimes over used though and occasionally boarders on the trite.
Given that he can write in such a voluminous fashion you would expect that there would be more variety in some descriptions. I don’t know how many times the hero Carter “palmed” his gun but it had me chuckling every time the word recurred in the text. Just once I wanted him to pull, draw or yank his gun but Carter is a palming kind of guy.
Just as SPIRAL is the last line of defense for humanity, Carter is the last line of defense within SPIRAL. When everything is going into the toilet there is Carter to pull the nuts out of the fire and get things back on track for the world. One of the most interesting characters in SPIRAL, Jam reappears in Quake but his role as a SPIRAL operative is eclipsed by the introduction of two new and interesting characters Simmo and Mongrel. Will Simmo and Mongrel become recurring characters? Only time will tell but this is one reader who will pick up the next novel to find out.
Other Andy Remic Reviews
Spiral: When the governments of the world need military help and support there is only one place they can go - Sprial - and Spiral calls on Carter.