Desmond Poole is damaged in more ways than one. If he was an underachiever before, he’s entirely useless now that he’s lost his right hand. He spends his time drowning his sorrows in vodka while he deliberately blows off the training that would help him master his new prosthetic. Social Services seems determined to try and stop him from wallowing in his own filth, so he’s forced to attend an amputee support group. He expects nothing more than stale cookies, tepid decaf and a bunch of self-pitying sob stories, so he’s blindsided when a fellow amputee catches his eye.
Corey Steiner is a hot young rudeboy who works his robotic limb like an extension of his own body, and he’s smitten by Desmond’s crusty punk rock charm from the get-go. Unfortunately, Desmond hasn’t quite severed ties with his ex-boyfriend, and Corey isn’t known for his maturity or patience.
Meatworks is set in a bleak near-future where cell phone and personal computer technologies never developed. In their place, robotics flourished. Now robots run everything from cars to coffee pots. Taking the guesswork out of menial tasks was intended to create leisure time, but instead robots have made society dependent and passive.
Desmond loathes robots and goes out of his way to avoid them. But can he survive without the robotic arm strapped to the end of his stump?
Jordan Castillo Price
JCP Books LLC
JCP Books LLC
JCP Books LLC
JCP Books LLC
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Wow. Just wow. Once I started reading Meatworks, I couldn't put it down. That's not to say the novel was always comfortable. There were times when I felt like I was watching a speeding train headed for the edge of a cliff. But dang, it was worth the ride. Let me just start by saying this is not a romance. If you are a reader who likes weddings and puppies, you'll have to look for them somewhere else. The closest you'll get here are some re-hydrated sea monkeys.
Desmond Poole is a beautifully written anti-hero. More than just flawed, this guy is a hot mess! While he's not the most likeable character I've ever read, his vulnerability really shines through--even when he doesn't want anyone to see it, or admit it to himself. I do believe this is the first science fiction novel I've read where the main character is a total Luddite when it comes to technology, and that was one of Desmond's most endearing traits. He lost his dominant hand, and has a robotic prosthetic that,...
5.0 of 5 Stars
For original review see The Prism Book Alliance Blog online
Meatworks takes place in Buffalo, NY, in a near-future that is not so different from our own. Except robots are in charge of handling every day functions for people, like how they drive, answer the phone, listen to music – and of documenting their every move. Desmond isn’t happy with robotics and their constant intrusion, which is problematic. His right hand is robotic. In order to maintain his low level of existence within the confines of his grubby apartment and the nearest bottle of vodka, he must keep the social services checks coming in. That means showing up at the mandatory amputee support group, where he meets brash young Corey. Instant attraction evolves into a stumbling, bumbling kind of relationship that Desmond seems determined to sabotage. A sort-of ex-boyfriend and possible robophobia are only minor issues compared to the larger picture of himself that Desmond...
Warning for some spoilers below. This isn't really a plot driven book, but I do mention some details from near the end of the book.
I am not surprised that this one didn't end up quite working for me, but I am a bit surprised by the reason. I was warned that Desmond is a very hard character to like (especially at the beginning), and that the romance is on the weak side. But by the end, both the characters and the romance pretty much did work for me. What left a sour taste in my mouth and will probably keep me from reading this one again is the crapsack world and the fact that characters I grew to like still have to live there.
At the beginning, Desmond really is everything I was warned about. He has had something awful happen to him, but he is so determined to make the worst of it at every turn that it is frustrating. He didn't sound like much of a winner even before his...
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