Fragment by Craig Russell (ebook review)

January 24, 2017 | By | Reply More

A big fragment of Antarctic glacier breaks off the Ross Shelf in Antarctica and is set to change the world. Three scientists Kate, Eric and Graham are the only survivors of a scientific research base nearby. They must survive and find a way to tell the world the truth about what has happened.

Meanwhile, TV presenter Jay and his producer, Al, were interviewing Kate at the time of the break. They don’t know what happened when they were cut off from her. No one will give them answers, so they go out to find their own.

Meanwhile, the President of America and his advisers try to cover up the disaster. While the vice president of marketing at White Star Cruises has other ideas, to try to use the news story as a promotional opportunity. Amid the humans, Ring, a blue whale, is trying to survive in the waters he calls home. Will the truth get out? Will the fragment destroy the world?

‘Fragment’ by Craig Russell is put together in quite an interesting way. The chapters are short and there are countless viewpoints from a range of different angles, from the scientists, Jay the TV reporter, secretarial staff in government, members of a US military submarine and Ring the whale. This made the book quite interesting because it really explored the impact that the fragment and the events relating to it were having on a global basis. It wasn’t just a story about a few people trying to save the world, it was a story about a range of people reacting to a crisis in different ways and the world in which that crisis was happening. This was certainly a different style to what I’m used to and I found it quite interesting. I think it served the story really well because, as I said before, it was more true to the story being told.

The only major pitfall to this style is that there were so many characters that the reader doesn’t really get to know any of them that well. This did disconnect me from the story at times, however, I am conscious that I am quite a character-driven person and this is not a character-driven story, because a character-driven story isn’t the right story to tell with this concept.

The political nature of the story was quite engaging. I think this is a very honest and realistic look at how the world is politically and what that would mean in the face of such a disaster. The hypocrisy of government was portrayed really well and from some quite interesting angles.

I think the role of the media is quite interesting in this story. Again, author Craig Russell, really discussed honestly the sort of impact an event like this would have. He acknowledges that despite the desire to bear the truth, there would still be that ever-present rivalry of who is going to cover the story, how well it will go down with different television companies and what effect it will have on the careers of those who are and aren’t involved in the coverage.

I also enjoyed the whale perspective. To start with I didn’t connect with Ring. I wasn’t sure why he is in the story or what relevance he has to the plot but, as the story progressed, Ring became more and more integral and became somewhat fascinating. The relationship between humans and whales is quite an interesting subject to tackle alongside the issue of the fragment, however I think, overall, it worked well. The author did a good job of giving enough explanation about the science of whales that people such as myself who know little about whales can still follow the story, while providing what I should imagine would have a been a fascinating look at whales for whale enthusiasts. There was quite a bit of technical jargon, not all of which I fully understood, but enough was explained for me personally to enjoy the story and to understand to an extent what was going on.

Overall, I’d have liked the book to be a bit longer, as I would have liked a bit more character depth but, other than that, I think it was an interesting look at Antarctica and whales, that honestly explored its impacts on a range of areas of society in a unique way. I would recommend it to anyone interested in science, politics, animals, the environment, the media or anyone who reads a lot of dystopian fiction and would like to try dystopian fiction from a slightly different approach.

Rebecca Thorne

January 2017

(pub: Thistledown Press. 240 page ebook. Price: £ 6.59 (UK). ISBN: 978-1-77187-111-2. ASIN: B01LVWO7T2)

check out website: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Fragment-Craig-Russell-ebook/dp/B01LVWO7T2/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1485170649&sr=1-1&keywords=Fragment+by+Craig+Russell

Category: Books, Scifi

About the Author ()

Leave a Reply