Cold Fusion 2000 by Karl Drinkwater

36431124Alex Kavanagh is a pedantic physics geek – a teacher who hates teaching, a lover who’s always getting dumped, a writer whose articles all get rejected, a 28-year-old still living at home and bullied at the bus stop by teenagers – and he’s just had the worst day of his life. Things can only get better, right?

Enter his ex, Lucy, in what seems to be a chance meeting. Her betrayal marked the point when his life went nuclear. But – holy protons! – he still loves her.

Two problems. First, she isn’t who he thinks she is. Second, she’s going to leave him forever in 72 hours.

Cold Fusion 2000 is a haunting novel about a man who’s too rational to believe in ghosts and too short-sighted to see what was in front of him all along.

Source Format Pages Publisher Genre Publication Date
Amazon ebook 216 Organic Apocalypse Romance August 17th, 2017 (Dec 2012)

Cold Fusion 2000 (CF2K) is a novel of incredible genius. Read it at face value and you will be left thinking that a LOT of things just don’t add up and how there are NO answers to anything; but, notice the hidden yet obvious clues, embrace the ambiguity and you will receive a complex internal conflict of a character. As such, it’s also very difficult to say anything detailed about the book because the slightest clue can spoiler it all…

Alex Kavanagh is not really enjoying his life. His job as a teacher is not at all rewarding (he’s simply too smart to teach youngsters who don’t give a flying), his relationships might start out well, but they fizzle out, and at home, he constantly argues with his sister. It seems like the routine he’s living is something he needs to satisfy his pedantic ways but this way of life is something that is also holding him back. His status quo is made even worse by the fact that he just seems to be drifting through the days, not enjoying anything much at all. Alex is a PhD dropout with sights firmly set back towards the past. The unwillingness to let go, the pit that causes loneliness…

He wondered where his mind had wandered this time, what life it had lived as a trail of neurons sped through networks of possibilities particle-fast, too rapid to catch without a hadron collider, causing super quarks of weirdness and leaving him with only a vague after-image like a melting dream. He had to accept that he couldn’t catch all his thoughts, all the things going on in his body, the processes which slipped by in the background just leaving a shadow, an itch, the grain of sand that probably wouldn’t become a pearl, a blazing after-trace that lives a second then is gone forever. All those possibilities occurring in a second of frantic life: it never ceased to amaze him. The world was an incredible and beautifully constructed thing.

And one day, everything truly goes to pot- the Glasgow Smile Man sits next to him on the bus (GSM is scary and creepy), the teenage bullies at the bus stop are relentless at making Alex feel intimidated and his girlfriend Anne has had enough. As Alex is already defeated by everything in his life, everything that has built up inside over the years, all his failures and hurts, you can only imagine that the next natural step would be for things to either get way-way worse or start moving towards the better. A surprise run-in with his ex GF, believe it or not, was exactly what Alex needed. A way to fix everything!

Now, you may think that this is going to be a straightforward lost loves romance story, but I would like to point out that this is not the case. Should you pick up this book, be ready to be surprised. And be vigilant. Every word in this book could be treated as an indicator of things to come, every chapter could hide the ‘a-ha!’ moment that helps you connect the dots! I would like to think that I had my theories about certain things but when at the end of the book I stumbled across the FAQ about the book, I was mind blown.

He felt that he perceived the shape within, just for a second. She had hope. It spread; he could almost witness electrons moving through the magnetic field between them, following lines of force, beautiful things everywhere, sharing, changing both of them in the process, the covalent bonding of life.

It’s funny, just the other day I was thinking that maybe I should try and find romance written by male authors and then I remembered I had CF2K on my Kindle. Fantastic! In I went and I truly received an interesting reading experience. Cold Fusion 2000 comes in a complete package filled with geeky smarts, feelings (good, bad, anxious and elated), surprises and a couple of wanks. Took you by surprise there, heh? Well, my point is, there’s no overly graphic sexy time content but still quite true to the relationships aspect when it comes to intimacy (even if it involved only one person).

Bottom line- a great contemporary novel with a complex main character I came to care about. I was 100% committed to the journey Alex had to undertake and thoroughly invested in seeing the destination…  Reading this book felt real and at times sad, but also full of hope and with a promise of new beginnings… I really liked it…

Cold Fusion 2000 on Goodreads ¦ Amazon UK ¦ USA

24 comments

    • Hahaha, yeah, I made it sound like a real detective easter egg hunt, didn’t I?! 🙂 No, joking aside, it’s quite a unique contemporary focused on relationship(s) 🙂

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    • Thank you! 🙂
      It does have that scifi vibe and really it’s used to blow the whole internal conflict into a whole new level… I have to say, it was rather interesting read but I was also super grateful to find the FAQ link or the book whch made quite a few pieces fall into place for me 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Haha, thank you 🙂 It was quite an unexpected and interesting read for me…
      Hmm… if I had to sub this genre… I think it’s a contemporary… romance? I want to say romance because it’s about love and heartache and second chances but then again, it has that… vibe… it’s not full blown scifi, although perhaps some elements can maybe be translated this way…

      Liked by 1 person

  1. There is a YA trilogy I have to finish that has a male author and I like the way he writes romantic scenes better than most. Ha! I should give this book a try. Thanks for another entertaining review. I really enjoy reading them. 🙌🙌🙌

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks La La! 🙂
      What’s the YA trilogy? I do tend to think that even in fantasy, written by males, they do tend to keep the romance side of things a whole lot more realistic and without the OTT, dreamy fluff… I am too bitter to digest all the swoon 😀

      Liked by 1 person

      • The first book is Mystic City and the second one is Toxic Heart. I have the first two books in hardcover, but I never got around to reading the second one because the third one was only published in German; which made no sense because the author is American. 😂 I found out a couple of months ago that there is an English audiobook, so I am going to finish reading them soon. Ha ha. Crazy. 😝

        Liked by 1 person

        • Cool, I’ll put an eye over the Mystic City… how strange that the third one is only in German? I wonder is it because of the geographical success of the book or something?

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  2. Nice review , although I’m not very good with ambiguous stuff , I have only liked a few things across all media with ambiguity in them . Either ways , it does sound fascinating 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I hope it isn’t bad form for the author to chip in, but I was fascinated by the mentions of genre, because it’s something I’ve been part of a few discussions about with other authors recently, particularly female authors. The issue for them is that it can be hard to know how to categorise their books. A common label is “women’s fiction” – but when they are writing good books, why shouldn’t men read them too? Then there is “contemporary fiction” – which doesn’t mean a lot except “fiction written fairly recently that doesn’t fit into any other neat category”. There’s also “literary fiction”, but that has its own issues, and implies books without that tag don’t have literary qualities such as clever structure or in-depth character portraits or innovative use of language. I really feel for my colleagues in this. The mention of romance above was spot-on, in that a book (such as Cold Fusion) may have romantic love as one of the strands, but it probably breaks some of the expected rules relating to “romance” as a BISAC genre (e.g. needing a clear happy-ever-after). So there are all sorts of problems with many categorisations, and unfortunately no clear answers. If it is an issue for my friend authors who are much more famous than me, then I know it isn’t something I can solve. It’s the issue of how to pigeon-hold books to aid discovery, without pigeon-holing books in ways that reduce diversity and experimentation. I feel a blog post coming on. 🙂

    Perhaps it’s why I sometimes sigh with relief when I write a book that can be easily categorised by combining terms (e.g. “feminist action sci-fi” [Lost Solace], or “rural suspense horror” [Harvest Festival]). It sidesteps the whole issue. 🙂 But even then there are intricacies – for example, I’ve just pigeon-holed Harvest Festival, yet in reality it isn’t really about surviving a home invasion, that’s just the subject matter – the themes are really to do with reconnecting with those that you love, and learning to value what is really important, and making the most of every minute we get with those we care about. Which actually makes it sound closer to books like Cold Fusion 2000 than action-packed horror. I’ll cease now, but thanks for inspiring a lot of thoughts in me – all the comments show that Liz has a lovely community of people who follow her reviews!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hey Karl!
      Not at all bad form and your feedback on the genres is very welcome. You make some really interesting points.
      i recall discussing the genre problem with an author a couple years back- they had a serious trouble ‘genrefying’ their series because it broke a lot of ‘rules’… and their worry was around readers expecting a certain genre it was classified under and yet they got something that was not only that specific genre but it covered quite a lot of the genres… so, similar to what you were saying.
      Some readers are very dependent on the genre classification- and it can be risky for the author/book when the reader doesn’t get exactly what it’s classified under, but generally I am seeing that many, many books now break the genre boundaries and readers tend to welcome the fresh and new…

      Oh, and I agree- I have some really lovely followers- they make my day with their comments, shares and their specific brand of take on books 🙂 Love it…

      Like

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