❰Read❯ ➳ Crosstalk Author Connie Willis – Saudionline.co.uk

Crosstalk chapter 1 Crosstalk, meaning Crosstalk, genre Crosstalk, book cover Crosstalk, flies Crosstalk, Crosstalk 095a8f0aeaed3 Science Fiction Icon Connie Willis Brilliantly Mixes A Speculative Plot, The Wit Of Nora Ephron, And The Comedic Flair Of P G Wodehouse In Crosstalk, A Genre Bending Novel That Pushes Social Media, Smartphone Technology, And Twenty Four Hour Availability To Hilarious And Chilling Extremes As One Young Woman Abruptly Finds Herself With Way Connectivity Than She Ever DesiredIn The Not Too Distant Future, A Simple Outpatient Procedure To Increase Empathy Between Romantic Partners Has Become All The Rage And Briddey Flannigan Is Delighted When Her Boyfriend, Trent, Suggests Undergoing The Operation Prior To A Marriage Proposal To Enjoy Better Emotional Connection And A Perfect Relationship With Complete Communication And Understanding But Things Don T Quite Work Out As Planned, And Briddey Finds Herself Connected To Someone Else Entirely In A Way Far Beyond What She Signed Up ForIt Is Almost Than She Can Handle Especially When The Stress Of Managing Her All Too Eager To Communicate At All Times Family Is Already Burdening Her Brain But That S Only The Beginning As Things Go From Bad To Worse, She Begins To See The Dark Side Of Too Much Information, And To Realize That Love And Communication Are Far Complicated Than She Ever Imagined

10 thoughts on “Crosstalk

  1. says:

    2ish stars.This is ridiculous Well obviously because it s farce, but if you ask me, it s of an irritating, eye roll ridiculous than a humorous one In this book, Willis has the subtlety of a hand grenade and the nuance of a stick figure It s a fast paced romantic sci fi comedy about telepathic gingers except it s hard to tell when the comedy is intended and the romance is creepy view spoiler C.B emotionally manipulates Briddey by playing knight in shining armor, constantly lying to her, and then getting her to fall in love with him by reading her mind This happens within two days of her thinking he s a creep hide spoiler

  2. says:

    You know, I was worried that my being a total fanboy of Connie Willis would have unduly influenced any kind of review I might make for any new novel, but I never should have worried At all This is a Great SF Romantic Comedy, with all the best features of To Say Nothing of the Dog, at least with the comedy of errors, the speed and flurry, and the comedy, even if we re not in the realm of time travel any This one is all about communication, and if you really think that you ve got it all figured out by page 100, then think again And again And again Because Connie Willis will grab you by the scruff of your neck and throw you into a truly brilliant breakneck pace It might even nearly overwhelm you with its peril and humor and pathos and that s only the first few pages Do I feel pity for Briddy Do I want to throw away all cell phones forever and tell people to just QUIT the gossip, already Oh yes.But is this what the novel is about Oh lordy no It only keeps getting better and better and better, and by the time we re through with Trent and Briddy and C.B well, I don t know about you, but I was bawling like a little baby Connie Willis knows how to weave a really tight tale with so, so many perfect emotional tweaks The finale had so much build that it literally blew my mind In a great way I savored this novel like crazy This is real storytelling What a gem And to think that this is merely a Romantic Comedy Good Grief So why am I still teary I m a guy I m supposed to be made of sterner stuff Okay Enough Squee You get the idea Connie Willis has done it again Don t ever believe that I m just taking this for granted, though Has anyone started to worship her, yet I mean, with shrines and all Um Why not I love going all gooey with a good book, but I generally don t go THIS far unless it really, really deserves it Thanks to Netgalley and the publishers for letting this humble reviewer get a sneak peek at one of his favorite authors of all time So much Joy

  3. says:

    Review first posted on Fantasy Literature In Crosstalk, Connie Willis new near future science fiction novel, Briddey works for Commspan, a smartphone company that is anxious to compete with Apple For the last six weeks Briddey has been in a whirlwind romance with Trent, a hot young executive at Commspan, who swept Briddey off her feet with his suave charm and his Porsche Now Trent has invited Briddey, as a prelude to getting engaged, to get a popular minor neurological brain surgery, called an EED, along with him, to enhance their ability to sense each other s emotions Emotional telepathy, if you will Briddey s co workers are thrilled for her, but her Irish relatives and her co worker C.B Schwartz are urgently telling her not to get the EED her relatives because they dislike Trent, and C.B because it s brain surgery and unintended consequences are always a danger Briddey, however, in the throes of her infatuation with Trent, refuses to listen When their surgeon unexpectedly has an opening in his schedule and shifts their surgeries forward several months, Briddey and Trent sneak off to the hospital without telling anyone.Briddey gets WAY than she bargained for When she wakes up from surgery, she hears an actual voice in her head True telepathy, not just sensing emotions And it s not Trent whose thoughts she is hearing Briddey is horrified, but her communication problems are only just beginning.In a post on her blog, Connie Willis explains The novel was partly inspired by our wildly over connected world, in which we re constantly bombarded with communication, most of it unwelcome, and partly by the misconceptions people have about what being telepathic would be like They always assume it would either be profitable finding out people s computer codes or social security numbers or blackmailable personal secrets or fun But Willis sees the many downsides of telepathy hearing things we really would be happier not knowing, being subjected to others boring or unpleasant or repugnant thoughts with no guarantee that we would be able to effectively tune them out Crosstalk explores the perils of over communication, along with miscommunication, gossip, deception and the many other ways communication can go wrong and sometimes, thankfully, go right It s a timely topic for the Information Age, where electronic communication, along with its risks and limitations, too often replaces face to face communication Crosstalk starts off a little slow and then shifts into that farcical comedy of errors mode that Connie Willis so often employs in her novels I tend to think that Willis overuses it, especially when it continues for multiple chapters, but that may be because it tends to make me rather antsy and frustrated as a reader when the main characters are ineffectually and confusedly running around, with miscommunication at every turn The plot tends to stall in these chapters, as well as the characters development But Crosstalk turned a corner for me along the way There were some unexpected and imaginative developments in the plot, and as various plot threads began to tie together, it developed into a truly enjoyable reading experience.There are a few elements of the plot that require some suspension of disbelief The characters who have the dubious gift of telepathy need to build durable mental images of safe places castles, courtyards, and other enclosed places where they can cut themselves off from the unwanted flood of others thoughts These safe places become so real to the characters as they visualize them that they see themselves as actually in these places, rather than in their real world settings But it was such a delightful element of the plot that I didn t really have any difficulty just rolling with it.Similarly, Briddey s nine year old niece Maeve, a computer genius with a zombie obsession, is unbelievably precocious for her age She can program mobile software better than, apparently, anyone at Commspan But she s such an enjoyable character that it s forgivable Maeve is responsible for much of the humor in Crosstalk Mom s having a fit She says nobody can fall in love that fast, but I think they can I mean, Rapunzel and Flynn Rider fell in love in two days, and in The Zombie Princess Diaries, Xander fell in love with Allison in like five minutes, but that s because there s not much time when there are zombies chasing you.In the end, Crosstalk is not simply a novel about communication with romantic comedy elements It s also about families, trust, and risking yourself to help other people Not to mention show tunes and zombie movies I received a free ebook from Netgalley and Del Rey in exchange for a review Thank you

  4. says:

    The blurb of this book was a bit wishy washy, but it s Connie Willis, so I expected some kind of interesting comment on current communication and the ridiculousness of the EED Instead I got a story exploring the pros and cons of telepathy, something I figured out myself as a small child, with added creepy romance I m pretty disappointed.The book opens with a lot of promise Briddey how does one pronounce that is some kind of executive Maybe We never really find out what she does at one of Apple s competitors She has an overbearing family and the company needs to come up with an innovative idea for a new phone fast I read the first two chapters and actually had to put it down because Willis had recreated Briddey s life so well it was frantic, never a moment to herself, constantly being barraged by phone calls, texts, gossips She spent a whole day at work and didn t really do anything, and by the end of it, I was exhausted As an introvert, it was seriously overwhelming and I just wanted to shout at Briddey to turn her damn phone off and deadbolt her door to stop her relatives getting in Then change the locks, get some ear plugs, and shut out the world for a while.This breathless tumble of constant interaction continues and I think it s one of the reasons this was such a fast read for me Until about the 75% mark, I tore through this book I didn t really know what was going to happen in the plot and kept expecting something incredible, something worthy of such a great writer I ve only read Doomsday Book which was fantastic , but I ve heard so much about Willis and always regretted I haven t been able to get my hands on of her work.Unfortunately, that never happened, and at 80% of the way through I d lost any expectation that it would happen I almost put it down, but this was a review copy from NetGalley so I decided to plunge on My lack of expectation was met, but the quality of the writing went even further downhill The last 20% of the book is pretty much all a massive info dump The various threads of plot come together and there were quite a few , but the only way they re pulled in is through enormous amounts of exposition, generally on the part of C.B., one of Briddey s co workers about him later This was boring I skimmed a lot and didn t miss out on much by doing so The explanations were complex, but ultimately the majority of them didn t matter, which cuts to the heart of one of the major problems with this book.I figured out most of the major plot points long before Briddey did, and reading about her figuring them out, or being told them, was pretty frustrating This book really spoon feeds everything to you, which is weird because the answers are skilfully hinted at throughout the book Having such delayed reveals was annoying and made me feel like Willis assumed I was stupid.Part of this is because Briddey is one of the dumbest characters I ve read, basically ever I wanted to throttle her right from the start when she was answering calls from her family that she knew would be pointless and she didn t have time for I realise Willis is probably commenting on a certain type of person who can t ignore a call, can t ignore someone at the door, and is a complete pushover, but good grief it was difficult to read Especially as Briddey never really changed her behaviour She goes through a lot in this book and yet at the end she doesn t seem to value privacy any than she did at the start view spoiler The only thing that really changes is that she realised Trent was a scumbag, and that only happened because she heard his thoughts She never once stopped to think about his actions, which were just insanely obvious I mean, right from the first mention of him I knew something was up hide spoiler

  5. says:

    Briddey Flannigan knows she s lucky to have a boyfriend like Trent Worth He sends her flowers, takes her to the hottest restaurants, and texts her first thing every morning Far from being allergic to commitment, Trent has already said the big ILY, and now he s proposing they have an EED to become even closer It all has the rumor mill at their workplace churning with barely concealed envy Who wouldn t want their boyfriend or girlfriend to suggest something so romantic And after only six weeks of dating, no less.EED is a futuristic surgical procedure that allows couples to communicate emotions instead of just words and helps them connect on a deeper level Or at least that s what s supposed to happen Sometimes the procedure fails because a couple isn t emotionally bonded enough, although Briddey certainly doesn t think that ll be a problem for her and Trent.What Briddey doesn t anticipate is just how well the EED would help her connect with someone else Someone who is definitely not Trent.Maybe she should have listened to C B., the oddball lab tech who rarely leaves the basement at Commspan, the telecoms company where they work C B spends days warning her about the dangers of EEDs and surgery in general He warns her the procedure might come with unintended consequences, but she never imagined connecting to the wrong person could be one of them And try as she might, she can t get the wrong voice out of her head to let Trent s in She and Trent have never been further apart Maybe C B was right when he claimed communication would be bad for her relationship.If only Briddey knew how much communication was in store for her Unintended consequences, indeed And now it seems C B might be the only person who can save her from this mess.This book came close to being a five star read for me, but one thing held me back This book is at least 100 pages too long And all the other problems with it stem from that flaw Briddey has the most over involved, nosy family and coworkers ever To a certain point, it s ok Amusing, even But because the book is so long, this dynamic keeps getting shoehorned into the story, and it loses its luster If the book had been shorter, reoccurring themes like her pushy, over the top Irish brood would have seemed fresher and less gimmicky A lot of scenes were drawn out and repetitive There s one part where Briddey and C.B are trying to get from one part of a library to another part of the same library, and it takes them like 20 pages It didn t turn me off enough to abandon the book, but I could see how it might with other readers Then there s the name Briddey Yes, maybe this is petty, but that s a horrible name, even explained as being short for Bridget, and I cringed every time I read it.The good parts of this book outweighed the negatives It s a romantic comedy with a sci fi twist, and I happen to really enjoy romantic comedies when done well Which this one is I like the whole couple who spar together stay together trope Mark Darcy and Bridget Jones who no one ever called Briddey, but I digress George Knightly and Emma Woodhouse I liked most of the characters in this book, but I did feel Trent was a bit transparent When you discover the truth about him you won t be surprised I loved Maeve, Briddey s niece who spends every waking minute trying to outmaneuver her crazy warden of a mother, but I do think the author made a mistake with her age she s supposed to be 9 but acts like 12 And of course this book has a HEA ending that s expected but satisfying at the same time.Overall impressions if you ve ever thought sci fi books should be like romantic comedies, this is the one for you This is my first Connie Willis book, but I m excited to read from her.Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for giving me an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.

  6. says:

    This review can also be found on my blog, Dana and the Books.I need to be upfront Connie Willis is my all time favourite author and I love her Her books are perfect.I waited an agonizing six SIX whole years to get my hands on this book and it was worth it I would wait another six years to get this sort of amazingness again well, I m incredibly impatient person so while I would wait, I wouldn t do it quietly.Crosstalk was one of her lighter and hilarious books It wasn t gutwrenching like Doomsday Book or Passage it had a similar tone and atmosphere as To Say Nothing as the Dog Like all of her books, there was always a sense of urgency and panic Mix that in with trademark Willis wit, missed messages, franticness, and hiding from people and you ve got exactly what I love about her books.The EED was an interesting and also slightly terrifying piece of tech It actually reminded me a lot of Deanna Troi s Betazoid abilities in Star Trek The Next Generation.Crosstalk was an adorable and comedic experience While I didn t have a book hangover that lasted a week like I did with Passage, I turned the last page with a huge smile on my face She is one of the few authors who can give you a heart attack with tension but then make you laugh out on the next page.And that s why Connie Willis is my queen.

  7. says:

    Reading this book is like experiencing a prolonged anxiety attack But wait That s not a bad thing It s like having a funny, clever and romantic anxiety attack Connie Willis books tend to either feature a comedy of manners set against a dark and dire background or a comedy of manners in a somewhat less catastrophic situation This is one in the less dire and light hearted category But Willis humor always has her own distinct flavor it s unmistakable and I love it Here, she riffs on the idea that s been getting tossed around for a while now about whether or not our ever increasing capability for communication, enhanced by ever progressing technology, is really a good and productive thing Not just riffs, but goes into a brilliantly wailing guitar solo on the topic Briddey works for a cell phone company So does her fiance, Trent Trent has recently asked Briddey to get an EED with him a new and trendy surgical procedure which is supposed to help bonded couples have a greater degree of empathy with each other even enabling them to sense each others emotions As readers, we re not led to think that this is a good idea for Briddey for a second Trent is so enormously clearly a schmuck and a half, and the two haven t even been together for two months We re not the only ones to think it s a terrible idea the weird computer geek in the basement lab is also full of dire pronouncements about the plan And every single person Briddey knows has SOMETHING to say about it, because gossip, whether it s from family or coworkers, travels faster than the speed of light There wouldn t be much of a story, of course, if something didn t go wrong but believe me, the multifarious ways in which things go wrong are unpredictable and terribly amusing Many thanks to Gollancz and NetGalley for the opportunity to read this new book by one of my favorite authors As always, my opinions are solely my own.

  8. says:

    Remember when Apple launched their watch the year before last and there was that creepy app where you could transmit your heartbeat to another wearer or just even tap out morse code for I am following you with a knife Well, it freaked Connie out a little too And her wonderful mind took this on and pushed this creepy technology to its limit Trent and Briddey have had a whirlwind office romance over the last month, and Trent has popped the question No, not engagement, but to get an EED It s much commitment An EED is technology that is implanted into the base of the brain that connects you to you lover you can feel their emotions and how much they love you The trouble is that Briddey s family and one of her colleagues are dead against it But Briddey and Trent are in love They both work for a rival phone company and are working on a new prototype phone to rival the new Apple model Briddey s family is hilarious and like all other Connie Willis novels, they add so much comedy and awkwardness.And, of course, something goes wrong I m not going to say anything because spoilers sweeties What you get is a nice, tight Connie Willis book that may not offer anything left of field, but is a solid unputdownable Connie Willis novel For the fans, it s like Passage without the reader trauma, and like Bellweather , but less funny It s driven by the mystery of what went wrong and the characters Always the characters with Connie But Briddey isn t quite as lovable as her other leads, she s a bit naive and a bit of a sheep, but that s the character that drives the story It also hit me how all Connie Willis novels are very old school Hollywood at heart Her plots, characters and pacing remind me of the great black and white days of Hollywood There s Arsenic and Old Lace, Harvey, It s a Wonderful Life, even some Hitchcock The books have the same comforting feeling too Someone needs to make a Connie Willis into a mini series.

  9. says:

    I have a bunch of jumbled thoughts about this book, and mulling didn t help, so I ll just list the jumble bits and be done with it I found Briddey s family simply hideous No concept of privacy, no respect for boundaries, constantly talking over one another and refusing to listen to one another Hideous Liked Maeve, though I thought she was waaaaaaaaay too precocious and super brilliant for a nine year old I often wanted to smack Briddey she was a total doormat with her family, couldn t prevaricate when necessary How does one make it to adulthood without the ability to shade the truth, or at times lie Young children know how to lie Anyone with a kid knows what I mean Did you do What Not me I wanted to squash beat to death Mary Clare That s not at all nice, and quite a violent response, but really Helicopter parenting to the nth degree Mary Clare is a nightmare And Trevor really Briddey couldn t see who and what he was until after the connection Huh Trevor was so obviously a jerk within a few sentences into his character and self centred, and willing to sell his soul mother puppy you name it if it meant he d get an executive office I wish Connie Willis had not resorted to her patented miscommunication thing I loved it in To Say Nothing of the Dog , but it didn t really work for me in this story I wanted to see something different Dr Verrick looked shifty and untrustworthy to me pretty early, and Briddey didn t catch it at all Shaking my head about that woman What the heck does Briddey do at Commspan She s got an admin assistant, so she s not a peon, but I have no idea WTF she did at work I know it wasn t necessarily germane to the story Willis was telling, but what was Briddey s area of responsibility with respect to the development of the new phone that had Trevor in such a lather And wouldn t Briddey have to have demonstrated some level of competence if she was a supervisor manager Competence, by the way, she didn t really manifest for much of the book C.B alternated between too nice and stalking.Ok, those are probably all the things that annoyed me through this book I tore through all 498 pages over several sittings over a day and a half So, despite everything that was annoying me, I kept going I liked the way Willis had me feeling the terror of all the voices And the exhaustion and frustration of being too available to people, through all the different types of tech.I m giving this a 2.5 stars I wanted to like this a lot , as I like Willis work, but I just couldn t get too far past the things that annoyed me.

  10. says:

    Audiobook I couldn t finish this one I gave it over 6 hours 35% to convince me it was worth continuing Narrator Mia Barron was quite good so this is one of the few I abandoned purely because of how much I hated the characters and story.This was a comedic farce without the comedy It was an Abbott Costello Who s on first routine, with smartphones and no punchline s Briddie was supposedly an exec for a smartphone company but she was spectacularly stupid She makes important decisions for a tech company but can t keep track of her most basic deceptions let alone what she did with her car All of her problems could have been solved simply by telling people to butt out or better yet PISS OFF I hate stupid characters and they don t come any stupider then Briddie.Well her sister was certainly insufferable I GUESS we were supposed to cheer for CB to GET THE GIRL despite his like of hygiene or redeeming qualities These weren t characters they were caricatures The plot was extremely convoluted I get it, it s a farce but there was no redeeming comedy I snorted in frustration then wry amusement The point it wants to make about technology and intrusive communication could have been done effectively in a short story not a 20 hour, 500 page book This book is packed full of pop culture However it feels like the author is just jamming this crap in Look I said Instagram And I know what Tumblr is And Tinder I m hip like that I can t help but think this book will age poorly It is only 6 months old and already seems dated Brad and Angelina as the ideal coupleooops Even though I did not finish it I know I did not like it so 1 star

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *