Now, I guess this is one of the first sci-fi/fantasy books for adults from a child’s perspective that I’ve reviewed. The start is pretty reasonable, but the more you read, the weirder it gets. For those of you that like weird – this book may be for you. We follow the perspective of a young girl, and that’s not all. There are thoughts interjected all over the show from other characters that I was never really sure – is she mind reading or are we reading everyone’s thoughts at once? The thoughts are in italics – but it still warps you out of the story when you read thought after thought from different characters.
However, I do believe this book does have some insight into critical social issues, and I think the author has donated proceeds from the book to a, or several, charities.
We follow Lacy Dawn, her father Dwayne, her mother Jenny, her friend Faith, her father’s friend Tom, and finally DotCom (the name reminds me of Kim Dotcom, and I couldn’t get that out of my head). This entourage makes up the main characters in the book (plus two more Mr Prump and Mr Rump).
Firstly, the absolute main character is Lacy Dawn. She’s been taught and chosen since she was young all about topics that are far above her grade level. She blazes over topics such as sex, drugs, men, and abuse. She talks about these things as if every thirteen years old should know them. She comes from a low-income family in a poor area so there is a little bit of dialect in the book. As a character, I’m not sure if I liked Lacy Dawn. Innocence mixed with intelligence is maybe not my favourite attributes. She also has a friend, Faith, who only she can see for most of the book. Faith and Lacy discuss so many topics as children would, not understanding (or just saying what comes to their mind first).
Next, we have her father (Dwayne), and her mother Jenny. Dwayne is a wife and child beater (there is a lot of domestic violence at the start of this book). Jenny is a struggling mother who doesn’t know what to do or how to escape. Throughout the book, we see these two characters develop and improve on their faults, through the power of alien technology. Tom, Dwayne’s friend, also finds himself discovering his flaws the further through the story we go.
Lastly, we have Dotcom, who is an android (robot) from the centre of the universe, as well as his boss Mr Prump. Dotcom has waited millennia for Lacy Dawn as per the instructions from Mr Prump (the manager of the universe… kind of). Dotcom finds himself moulding to his new world the more he hangs with Lacy. It’s almost as if Lacy and Dotcom have an intelligence swap.
As quite a social science fiction book, it is filled with themes and criticisms of society. The first I’d like to tackle is domestic abuse. This happens for practically half the book until Dwayne is fixed. We also see this with Faith (spoiler ahead). Faith says her father killed her for resisting his urges. This sort of abuse is wild through the earlier parts of the book, and you almost believe Lacy uses her imagination (with Dotcom and the trees) to cope with her abuse from her father (his anger).
Another theme is teamwork and leadership. We see this later in the book when Lacy Dawn uses her leadership skills she’s gained to control and guide her team to solutions. We also read that she’s okay to let her team do the work when she’s not capable of completing it. I thought that was quite a nice little theme Eggleton added in.
Finally, the last issue I want to discuss is the obsession with sex and sexualizing things. I have to note, however, that all sexual acts are never performed in the book, they’re merely overheard or talked about. Throughout the entire book, Lacy seems obsessed with marrying and noticing DotCom and his “parts”. She does go against today’s society by stating that she will not have sex before marriage. Kind of weird to read about it, but we also read about how she hears her parents going at it and how she hears her mother in the bathtub. This all put together lead me to believe Eggleton did this to comment on how much society uses and needs sex.
While the concept was original to me, and the characters seem to be quite developed, I just found the concept a little too bizarre for my liking. However, if you feel like you want something completely different from anything you’ve maybe read, please do pick this up. It had quite a lot of laughs and awkward moments. Overall, I thought it was a decent read.
I received a copy of the book from the author for an honest review. I always try my best to balance the reviews and not favour any one person (though I may be a bit subjective when it comes to the genre).