Official Review: God's Paradox by Mark Jacobson

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Christina Rose
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Official Review: God's Paradox by Mark Jacobson

Post by Christina Rose »

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "God's Paradox" by Mark Jacobson.]
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3 out of 4 stars
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One way to define a paradox is as follows, “one (such as a person, situation, or action) having seemingly contradictory qualities or phases.” (https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/paradox) God’s Paradox in particular, is an ongoing debate with no real end in sight. One of the more famous examples of this paradox is the question, “Could God create a stone so large that God cannot lift it?” (https://www3.nd.edu/~jspeaks/courses/20 ... ence-2.pdf) This question is not the exact premise of Mark Jacobson’s science-fiction novel, God’s Paradox, I simply bring it up to clarify what a paradox is for those who are unfamiliar. This particular dark novel explores the dangers of genetic engineering.

The book opens with a discussion of the futuristic first moon base, which is built in the year 2047 by the People’s Republic of China. The author even goes into how this moon base is built. Mark Jacobson then discusses who should possibly be able to establish a permanent base on the moon – astronomers, computer engineers, nanotechnologists, and even futurists, survivalists, and sci-fi fans.

This is where any other author would have probably lost me. I love the fantastical and fictional parts of this genre, but often get lost in the jargon of science and technology. Mark Jacobson, however, provides a very readable text that I find easy enough to navigate through. After this introduction, we meet the man behind the moon base, Zhang Bing-He, who is also the Chairman of the People’s Republic.

The reader gets to pretty much grow up with Zhang Bing-He. He was born to well educated parents in a small town of Northern China in the late 1990s. His mother taught Western music and dance, and his father was a mathematician. Zhang started reaching his cognitive milestones early, beginning with the completion of his 3-year old brother’s puzzles when he himself was only 10 months. At the age of 7, Zhang entered school, inevitably skipping the early grade levels. However, he only stayed in public school for a year. Due to his age, size, and social awkwardness, he was the victim of a bullying episode. For several years afterward, Zhang received his education via private tutoring from a woman with a PhD in Special Education. He withdrew even more socially, and was even physically affected. For example, he began walking with a stoop, constantly looking at the ground. At the young age of 15, Zhang was offered a full scholarship to Bei Jing University. It was here that Zhang met Dr. Hu-Lin Xi, the professor he collaborated with while working towards his degree programs. They connected instantly, and we soon find out that this was who introduced Zhang to the study of genetic engineering.

I truly appreciate the time the author took with his character building. All too often, we are presented with a protagonist, told what he or she is currently doing, but not how he or she got to that point. All of the information we are given about Zhang adds to the story and gives the reader valuable insight. Like I mentioned before, we pretty much get to grow up with our main character, which allows us to invest some emotions into his story. The author provides similar detail when describing the studies conducted by Zhang and Hu-Lin. It is told in plain text, and therefore easy to understand.

Zhang was in Japan when he discovered what he considered to be his purpose as a scientist. With this purpose in mind, he began to climb the political ladder. He no longer stooped; he gained weight; he improved socially. This was all a part of his plan to get him to where he was in the beginning of the novel, the 2047 Chairman of the People’s Republic. Zhang put together a team of genetic engineers and neuroscientists, along with one American female scientist, and they set out to accomplish Zhang's mission and purpose.

The majority of the novel was very well paced. The ending, however, seemed somewhat rushed. I was left feeling slightly disappointed. The book as a whole was good, but the ending seemed to lack the time and energy that was put into the earlier parts of the novel. Because of this, and the errors I encountered during my reading, I rate this book 3 out of 4 stars. I think this novel will be most enjoyed by science fiction fans, especially those within the Young Adult age range. However, those who prefer a lot of action in their science fiction novels may not find as much enjoyment in this particular novel.

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God's Paradox
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Post by geoffrey ngoima »

Well, I would find it enjoyable. Your review was just expounding enough, great work.
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Post by kandscreeley »

I'm still unsure of this one. Sci fi is my preferred genre, but this one sounds a little too slow for me. Still, it's an interesting premise. Thanks for the review.
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Post by Emie Cuevas »

A base on the moon, wow. This reminds of the tv series "space 1999" my favourite show when I was younger. This book seems to ne well thought out. I'd love to read this book and if the ending isn't up to scratch I'm already warned, Thanks for the great review.
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Post by Ijenna »

I'd like to find out why the author titled book God’s Paradox. I enjoyed reading this review.
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Christina Rose
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Post by Christina Rose »

geoffrey ngoima wrote:Well, I would find it enjoyable. Your review was just expounding enough, great work.
Thank you! I hope you enjoy the book if you get the chance to read it!
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Post by juliusotinyo »

I enjoy such controversial topics like gene splicing technology and the associated engineering. It was my choice profession but I ended up in petroleum, I would like to see the author's insights. Thanks for your review.
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Post by Christina Rose »

kandscreeley wrote:I'm still unsure of this one. Sci fi is my preferred genre, but this one sounds a little too slow for me. Still, it's an interesting premise. Thanks for the review.
It was definitely an interesting premise, and one that I enjoyed. The pace itself isn't slow, but there is definitely not as much action in this book compared to what I am used to in this genre. So, I can definitely see the hesitation. If there had been an epic battle scene at the end of the novel, it probably would have been more satisfying.

-- 11 Sep 2017, 00:25 --
Emie Cuevas wrote:A base on the moon, wow. This reminds of the tv series "space 1999" my favourite show when I was younger. This book seems to ne well thought out. I'd love to read this book and if the ending isn't up to scratch I'm already warned, Thanks for the great review.
I'll have to look into "Space 1999" if I can find any accessible episodes. The author did seem to put a lot of thought into his writing, and hopefully you'll enjoy the book if you get the chance to read it. Thank you for your thoughts!

-- 11 Sep 2017, 00:35 --
Ijenna wrote:I'd like to find out why the author titled book God’s Paradox. I enjoyed reading this review.
Thank you! Admittedly, I did not quite grasp the concept until I read through the novel a second time. Even now, I'm still allowing the ideas to float around in my head. ?
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Post by The Researcher »

Very detailed review. The plot sounds intriguing.
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Post by Christina Rose »

juliusotinyo wrote:I enjoy such controversial topics like gene splicing technology and the associated engineering. It was my choice profession but I ended up in petroleum, I would like to see the author's insights. Thanks for your review.
I found this book quite interesting. I hope you do, as well, if you chose to read it. This is definitely a topic that causes much controversy. Thanks so much for stopping by!

-- 11 Sep 2017, 01:41 --
The Researcher wrote:Very detailed review. The plot sounds intriguing.
This is actually a summary of my original review. ? I knew the first would be too long, and probably contained multiple spoilers. Thanks for checking out my review!
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Post by geoffrey ngoima »

Christina Rose wrote:
geoffrey ngoima wrote:Well, I would find it enjoyable. Your review was just expounding enough, great work.
Thank you! I hope you enjoy the book if you get the chance to read it!
Hope so too!
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Post by KlareAllison »

Interesting review, Christina Rose. Mark Jacobson's futuristic narrative, God's Paradox, attracts my attention because of its 2047 setting. This stretches my imagination in no small measure... 30 years to the real future!
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Post by Christina Rose »

KlareAllison wrote:Interesting review, Christina Rose. Mark Jacobson's futuristic narrative, God's Paradox, attracts my attention because of its 2047 setting. This stretches my imagination in no small measure... 30 years to the real future!
Thank you! It is definitely a stretch of the imagination. :)
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