As much as I joke about Amazon being my arch-nemesis, they offer good services for book readers. One of the services I follow is their First Reads program. The program provides early access to new books. Since I enjoy discovering new authors, the First Reads program provides one such avenue.
What’s the biggest bonus of the program? If you’re a Prime member, you can select at least one and sometimes two books off each month’s list for free. It’s how I discovered the book Interference by Brad Parks, which I doubt I would have otherwise stumbled upon.
Interference would best be described as a thriller mystery with some hard science fiction thrown in. The story revolves around quantum physicist and researcher Matt Bronik. After suffering seizures from an unknown cause that may be related to his research, Professor Bronik is abducted. His wife Brigid and local law enforcement Emmet Webster go on the hunt to discover his whereabouts and whether he is still alive.
Parks does a good job telling a story that keeps you engaged and guessing. He introduces numerous characters, all of whom have a valid motive to abduct Professor Bronik. He also does a great job immersing you in the environment in and around Dartmouth College. While I haven’t spent a ton of time there, I have been to the Hanover, NH area a few times. Parks description brought back memories of trips I’ve made there.
There are a couple of minor nits I had with the book. There are a few areas where Parks goes over the top detailing character backgrounds and over explaining motives. It slowed the book down for me in a few parts, and I’m not certain if it added a lot more to the story or if it could have been handled more efficiently. Second, the hard science fiction part was a little light. He injects some interesting concepts around quantum physics but doesn’t go very deep. He provides just enough detail to keep the science fiction interesting. I suppose it helps the book appeal to a broader, non-technical audience, but I enjoy it when a book goes into detail around the technology and weaves it deep into the story.
In any case, these are minor issues and personal preferences in my view. The book overall is well written and very engaging. It was a great, entertaining book that is one of my fun reads. If you enjoy books in the thriller mystery genre with enough science fiction to keep your attention, then Interference should be on your reading list. It’s an entertaining book that’s worth the read.