3 out of 4 stars
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For those who read the first book, Superhighway 2 by Alex Fayman may or may not be appealing at first glance, depending on how you liked it. But surprisingly, this is one series where the sequel is better than the original story. Although there are some character defects, the overall effect of this book is intense and enjoyable.
After the events of the first book – which include finding out he can travel anywhere in the world via Internet, stealing money from a rich Russian mobster, falling in love with a woman and then losing her through his own infidelity – Alex Fine decides to start his life over, though not without fresh mistakes. He gets married and thinks he can finally settle down, but when his son is born he realizes that he can never really outrun the mistakes of his past. Forced to place his newborn son in the same orphanage he grew up in, Alex thinks he can atone for his sins by helping the CIA prevent a war with Russia. But the deeper he gets into his mission, the more he realizes that he is just a pawn in a global game because of his unique ability. Who can he trust, and will he ever learn to live with his past?
I have two issues with this story. The first is the matter of female characters. So far, in both books, almost every female character has become an object of sexual desire for the main character, and to be honest, it’s getting tiring. As soon as one female character is out of the picture, another appears to take her place as his romantic cliché. So far, the only strong, stand-alone female character is the elderly orphanage director who raised him. The other issue is how the character is somewhat one-dimensional in the sense that he never learns from his own mistakes. He seems like the poster boy for bad decisions. Drug use, sex, and an addiction to money and splendor seem to define the better part of his character. Though it honestly feels like the character regrets his choices and wants to rectify them, knowing that he is not going to change makes it hard for the reader to empathize with his situation.
However, the descriptive imagery used by the author is, like in the first book, quite striking in allowing the reader to picture exactly what the character is experiencing. It somewhat combats the character’s one-sidedness by helping the reader understand his feelings of grief over the deaths of his loved ones and the love he feels towards his baby son. Additionally, the plot is complex and engaging enough that I was drawn into the story. While the first book felt like a whirlwind of travel and activity that never achieved a complete story, this second book feels much more well-rounded and self-contained. I felt that the book did justice to a full-fledged storyline, while still leaving it open for a third book to complete Alex’s tale.
Overall, this book is much better than the last one, and I give it 3 out of 4 stars. Though the characters have issues, the story itself is a worthwhile read. I enjoyed the description and the complexity of the narrative quite a bit. The sexual content is a downside in my opinion, reserving the book for mature audiences teen and up. But I was satisfied with the book as a whole, and I expect that a large portion of readers will, too.
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