I have to admit, most of the pre-publication buzz I'd heard swirling around Max Barry's new novel related to a quiz about famous poets. It's a book pretty far outside my normal reading space and I had no plans to pick it up. Yet somehow, feeling slightly slumpy, I grabbed a copy last weekend and found I had lost an entire afternoon.
Lexicon is set in a world seemingly identical to ours, with the addition of an agency specifically trained in the art of persuasion. Identified from a young age, talented students are schooled in linguistics and taught key words to help them persuade, aiming to eventually become an elite "Poet". The novel follows Emily Ruff, a student from the streets of San Francisco, and Wil Parke, a man the agency believes to be immune to persuasion, as their stories collide over a frighteningly powerful word.
Though I was apprehensive at first, after letting myself fall into Max Barry's universe I was completely engrossed. With quick witted prose and fast paced changes, Lexicon is a novel that is easy to get lost in, particularly as Emily goes through her schooling and the training process. Perhaps this is why I much preferred the fist half of the book to the second, as I would have gladly read several chapters of persuasion techniques over the novel's climax, which seemed slightly rushed.
Still, Lexcion was exactly the page-turner I needed for a quick, fun read. If you are looking for a great vacation book that will keep you thinking, puzzling and reading, Max Barry's Lexicon is the one to pick up.
Blog: River City Reading