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mobi Ë ↠ T.C. McCarthy

GermlineLy one way pass to the front lines of a brutal war over natural resources buried underneath the icy mineral rich mountains of KazakhstanBut war is nothing like he expected Heavily ard soldiers battle genetically engineered troops hundreds of meters below the surface The genetics the I find and that rating books for me anyway is getting to be a very tricky thing at least sometimes This book is probably better at least in some sense than the 3 star rating will indicate Still there's a reason I decided I had to go with 3 So let's again say this is the much lamented 35 star bookThis is a story of a future war The world has ground down to the point that metals are apparently in perennial short supply Some is being mined in space we're told but it's still very expensive to bring it down so when a deposit is found here on Earth it isgreatly desired What we have here amounts to a world war that is centered in the middle east and fought over and in deep mines Above ground and below futuristic weapons leave hordes of people deadmutilatedcrippledand completely destroyed The war is fought by men in battle armor and also genetically engineered troops thought of as products See there's a problem with the production of the Gs they deteriorate mentally It's called the rot So they have to be discharged at 18 Discharged that means killedThe world we see here is in many ways a sort of mixed bag of a possible result of the ideas we are seeing so prevalent today the growing disrespect for life or loss of reverence for life as an example and problems we've seen in the past the poor military planning and lack of actual goals and leadership seen during Vietnam There is an overriding feeling of futility about the book and so maybe inevitably at times about the book There is a part of the second half of the book that did feel totally futile to me and lost me a bit This is why I decided that the book as good as it is seemed to me to call for the 3 star rating rather than the 4 stars It lost my interest for just a whileThe story here is told in first personthrough the eyes of a chronic looser who's addicted to drugs and managed to smash every chance every job and every relationship he's ever had Sent to the war for Stars and Stripesto get a story He screws that up toHe becomes part of the military We follow him through the war through the experiences and the changes of his new lifeI suspect that people who've read a lot of military science fiction will see things ideas parts they've seen elsewhere I also believe that military personal will see things familiar here The book is another in the war is futile vein This time however I didn't get the feeling that the writer had an axe to grind The simple fact of war's reality is what's dealt with If you've been there I think you'll see things you recognizeI don't think it's a spoiler to note that when the civilian girl asks him was it scary You'll kind of get his reactionAnyway despite the 3 star rating which is mostly ayeah I like it but it didn't blow me awayrating I do recommend this one with the caveat that's it's very graphic and not simply a story

book Germline

read Germline mobi ´ ß randarenewables º Germline n the genetic material contained in a cellular lineage which can be passed to the next generation Also secret military program to develop genetically engineered super soldiers slangWar is Oscar Wendell's ticket to greatness A reporter for The Stars and Stripes he has the only one wGermline soldiers are the key to winning this war but some inventions can't be un done Some technologies can't be put back in the boxKaz will change everything not least Oscar himself Hooked on a dangerous cocktail of adrenaline and drugs Oscar doesn't find the war the war finds hi TC McCarthy’s ambitious debut novel is the first installment in his Subterrene War trilogy While it is ostensibly labeled as work of near future military science fiction that description barely scratches the surface of the true scope of the novel Germline is in essence a gritty and confronting coming of age story featuring a deeply flawed protagonist The result is intense uncomfortable and than just a little bit brilliantA grim believable future and a protagonist to matchGermline is set in a decidedly bleak near future where US and Russian troops battle for the Earth’s few remaining mineral deposits Foremost in the Americans’ arsenal are deadly suads of all female genetically engineered super soldiers These women known as Genetics are indoctrinated into a cult like religion of Faith and Death and exist for the sole purpose of killing as many enemy soldiers as possible before they themselves die or are “honorably discharged” via a bullet to the head at the age of eighteen However the US advantage is short lived as the Russians soon begin to engineer Genetics of their own As the supply of healthy human troops dwindles women are “encouraged” to stay at home breeding future war fodder while the US military recruits old men and boysEnter Oscar Wendell a sub par drug addicted reporter with a few friends in high places and ambitions for a Pulitzer Prize When Wendell manages to secure an assignment with US troops on the front lines in Kazakhstan he believes he has finally scored the story that will make him famous However he soon realizes that nothing could have prepared him for the realities of war Already an addict Wendell begins to rely increasingly upon narcotics while both his former life as a reporter and the civilian world gradually cease to exist to his tormented mindDaring and confrontingI say Germline is an ambitious debut because it is in no way the kind of “safe” first novel we sometimes see from new authors McCarthy refuses to limit his fiction by sticking to familiar or uncontroversial concepts or those we can view from a comfortable distance Nor does he feature characters and scenarios calculated for the broadest possible appeal and least likelihood of causing offence Instead McCarthy chooses a nihilistic and disturbed protagonist places the reader inside that character’s broken mind through first person narration and then proceeds to pack his novel with biting social commentarySo many things could go wrong with this kind of setup that one has to admire McCarthy’s daring if nothing else Yet he manages to pull the novel off in spectacular fashion creating a grueling experience sure to impress the readerA harrowing first person perspective Oscar Wendell’s first person narrative is undoubtedly one of the key factors that make Germline such an intense novel Reminiscent of Hunter S Thompson Wendell is not necessarily a likeable protagonist and the reader is privy to his every flaw He is a selfish self indulgent broken wreck of a human being whose emotions jump between extremes with alarming regularity Further he is not even particularly capable compared to the novel’s other characters and his continued survival in a war zone is just as often due to the efforts of a progression of friends in high places genetics fellow soldiers and dumb luck than the result of any actions of his ownDespite all this Wendell is somehow the perfect protagonist to carry the reader on an eye opening journey through McCarthy’s desolate future In addition although I am no expert on psychology and addiction McCarthy’s depiction of this aspect of Wendell’s character seems very true to life Wendell is in essence a deeply flawed and believable human being who—seemingly beyond hope—must learn to take responsibility for himself the hard way “The hard way” doesn’t get much harder than thisThe prose itself is direct and unadorned in a way that perfectly complements the setting and protagonist After all there is little time for poeticism when the world is falling apart around youNo shortage of social commentary here sirGermline gives the reader their first glimpse of a world where basic human rights have been all but stripped away and provides countless hints at to come Although we are limited to Oscar Wendell’s personal experience in this world once one looks below the surface much may be read into the novel The horrors that Wendell witnesses cannot be viewed in isolation they are after all the product of the society that allowed themFor instance the gender of the Genetics serves a dual purpose The accepted explanation to the Genetics’ gender holds that the initial male prototypes unlike their female counterparts are too prone to uncontrollable testosterone fueled violence; but the female models provide yet another benefit Their presence on the battlefields can be used by those in power to counter any allegations of sexism in excluding women from the front lines While this idea may make some readers uncomfortable it is deliberately calculated to be troubling and one would be hard pressed to say that this kind of set up is in any way endorsedAnd now for the really uncomfortable partAll in all although Germline is a work of science fiction it is in many ways not all that far fetched or unfamiliar The technology depicted throughout the novel is futuristic yet disturbingly plausible McCarthy merely takes already existing and fast developing technologies such as genetic modification and cloning to the next level As someone who has some familiarity with genetics and related science there was nothing depicted in the novel that I found particularly implausibleLikewise the novel’s premise despite being unpleasant is also uite believable and finds its basis in real world issues Most would agree that humanity is just beginning to realize somewhat reticently that natural resources are not infinite Further it is not hard to believe that if we continue to rely upon such finite materials too much longer we could well end up with the kind of resource war scenario McCarthy depicts Some may be so bold as to suggest that to some extent at least we already haveSo why should you read this bookGermline is without doubt one of the most intense and affecting books I have read in long time The fact that the details of the novel remain clear in my mind a month after finishing it should be a good indication of the extent to which it engaged me as a reader Nevertheless it won’t suit everyone Germline is not a light read nor is it an easy one What it is however is a well executed and relevant novel that will haunt you long after you finish reading It is gritty unsettling confronting and at times uite harrowing yet I wouldn’t have it any other way

T.C. McCarthy ↠ Germline text

Germline n the genetic material contained in a cellular lineage which can be passed to the next generation Also secret military program to develop genetically engineered super soldiers slangWar is Oscar Wendell's ticket to greatness A reporter for The Stars and Stripes he has the on Before I go any further into this review I want to be up front that I don't really feel ualified to review or judge this novel until I read it a second time Nevertheless I'm going to give it my best go Please consider this of a first impressions review that some kind of detailed analysis Edit After finishing the review this has got be the longest first impressions post ever Oh well my blog my run on incoherent thoughtsI finished Germline over the Fourth of July weekend More accurately I sat down with it Saturday morning and didn't even get up to eat until I finished it It stunned me The novel's blurb doesn't begin to encompass everything it has to offer I don't think Orbit Books is trying to mislead anyone but a few words can't capture everything TC McCarthy is trying to do This is not I repeat not a military science fiction novel in the tradition of Honor Harrington Weber or even the recent Old Man's War Scalzi Instead over the course of 300 pages Germline is an incredibly dark coming of age story about a broken man who can only justify his existence by going to warOscar Wendall is a reporter and not a particularly good one to ask his editor Lucky for him he's made a few well placed friends over the years that help him pull the plum assignment of being the first civilian allowed on the Line He uickly finds himself in Kazakstan joining a battalion of Marines fighting the Pops Russians to secure rare minerals vital to the US economy Already an addict Oscar begins to rely on drugs and to survive the terrifying world he now inhabitsTold entirely in first person Germline reads almost like stream of conscience at times replete with run on sentences and incomplete thoughts What at first feels a bit like self indulgent writing uickly starts to feel like an authentic look inside the mind of a drug addled narcissus Having never done any serious narcotics I'm not sure how close McCarthy hits the mark on the paranoia and dependence but he describes it as I've always imagined it to be super shittyGermline's narrative style seems to give McCarthy carte blanche to toy with his reader's emotions The inherent bias in a first person narrative makes the reader privy to all of Oscar's affectations It allows the reader access to all of his fantasies of the mind as well as the truth of his motivations Early on Oscar is the star of his own story but then later describes himself as a coward who only stays because he can no longer rationalize life without the war It wouldn't surprise me if some readers find it all a bit overwhelming Oscar is a dark figure without many redeeming ualities especially in his own mind He starts off annoyingly naive full of unwarranted confidence and willing to put his life on the line for a Pulitzer because he has no idea what that life is worth He's unemotional at times when he loses friends and cripplingly emotional at other timesThat said one of the things I kept ask myself time and again throughout the novel was how others perceived Oscar Telling the story solely through Oscar's very flawed eyes McCarthy leaves the answers to uestions like that open to interpretationThankfully McCarthy's ending is incredibly cathartic If I'd read the ending by itself it may have come off a bit contrived and convenient After the roller coaster of emotion that Germline sent me on for the first 250 pages though I couldn't have handled anything except what McCarthy gave me I found myself choked up on at least three occasions at the novel's conclusion an extremely rare occurrenceLike any good science fiction novel Germline includes gads of social commentary The most prevalent is the theme on which McCarthy is building his trilogy Some technologies can't be put back in the box For the most part this debate plays out through a suad of soldiers known as genetics Women raised for no other purpose than to die in combat and kick serious Russian ass the genetics are McCarthy's opening statement into a larger debate of how the concept of shared humanity survives when a man's in the larger sense first and last line of defense is dehumanizing everything around him I believe he extends the metaphor throughout the entire novel using Oscar's journey to redeem the notion that while things can never be put back in the box Oscar's own humanity or sense of community they can be made right I think it'll be interesting to see how this discussion continues to take place in future novelsAdditionally those who have a political leaning one way or another will uickly make a connection between McCarthy's description of Kazakstan's minerals and oil in the Middle East There's a scene in the book that really focuses in on this discussion and it's so thinly veiled as to make me wonder if the commentary is merely coincidental Given the author's background in international conflict analysis I find that hard to believe I didn't find it heavy handed by any means but it's there Readers with a feminist bent I mean that in the nicest possible way might also struggle a little bit as the only two female characters are an overbearing socialite mother and clones bread to killBrief aside I would be totally remiss if I didn't at least comment on Germline's cover Where the blurb fails to convey the heart of the novel the cover nails it Reminiscent of the Blackhawk Down movie poster I think the art absolutely captures a man totally beaten down but still willing to shoulder his burden and move forward I'm usually not a fan of the photo realism covers but I think artist Steve Stone nailed it I guess McCarthy agreesGermline is a tremendous debut novel To be honest I'm a little nervous that I've butchered the author's true intent in trying to communicate how it made me feel I'd love a chance to talk with McCarthy at some point because I don't know how a character like Oscar Wendell gets written without leaving an author hollowed out when it's all over Hell I felt hollowed out just reading it This novel isn't for everybody and I wouldn't touch it as a so called summer read but it's immediately going into my personal pantheon of war novels next to Gates of Fire and All uiet on the Western Front Hell of a debut TCPS McCarthy's second novel Exogen is due out next year as the second installment in his Subterrene Trilogy Germline stands so well on its own that I hope future novels set in the same world steer clear of Oscar Wendell