I confidently began reading Lexicon, only to be taken aback by the intensity of what was happening in the first few pages. The novel is an action packed thriller with an engrossing plot. For a bibliophile, there is nothing more exciting than a book about words and if it’s a thriller then all the more reason to read it.
Lexicon is about a group of people who call themselves ‘poets’ and have the ability to control others using words as their weapons. They can go to any extent to serve their purpose and caught in the middle of the mess is Emily. Emily is our protagonist who happens to have the ability to control minds with words and this ability of her’s gets her noticed by the poets. She finds herself being trained to control minds in a school for people gifted like her. Things which look bright given her status as a star pupil start going horribly wrong. Wil on the other hand is as confused as the readers about the happenings. He was ambushed in the airport restroom, eye ball piercing and all. Now he has people after him, seeking to know something he barely understands. Wil has a connection to the poets and he has no clue about it.
Of Emily and Wil, this is a book that is made brilliant by narrations. The unreliable kind, that keeps you guessing. The concept of controlling people by using the right words and planning to attain ultimate power sounds like something that would form a plot for the next super hero comic but works great as a thriller too! I initially thought the concept was far fetched but Max Barry’s narration and tight reign over the story lead me to believe other wise. My minor qualms do come from the fact that the speed of happenings makes it hard to feel for the characters, but I guess you can’t have it all.
A word of caution: It’s highly addictive and you will not be able to stop once you are into it so please make sure you read it on a weekend or may be during travel. Highly recommended.
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