C: I got Parasite. I found it in soft cover.
It’s gonna be awe-some! Life is soo good! A: Jesus you are excited. C: It’s Mira Grant. The cover is so pretty.
Look at the cover, look at the cover. It’s got parasites instead of zombies. Nothing
can go wro-ong! C: Something went wrong. A: Something went wrong. C: I’m not sure what I expected, but I can
tell you that I didn’t get it. Feed was so fast paced, the characters were like your
best friends, and the detail that was put into the media and society was incredible.
Instead… A: You got more zombie. C: The title said Parasites. A: But it’s more zombies. C: We are introduced to Sal (God I hate that
name), who is still recovering from a major car crash she was in. She woke up in the hospital
after the crash, with no memory, no motor skills, and zero knowledge of the english
language. A: Her family is shocked that she recovered,
but everyone credits her amazing recovery to the Symbogen parasite implant, called the
Intestinal Bodyguard. C: Sal spends years being rehabilitated, but
by the time we meet her she is ready for her own independence, which her parents refuse
to give her.. A: But her life is good. She has her handsome
doctor boyfriend Nathan, her job at the animal shelter, and regular checkups at Symbogen
where she is personally checked on by the CEO and creator of the Intestinal Bodyguard,
Steven Banks. C: Her life is pretty normal, until the world
goes nuts. People start changing… [music] C: Right before her eyes people start going
crazy. They stop responding to their environment, animals hate them, they shamble along, and
then they get violent. No one knows why. It could be some sort of terrorist attack or
it could be something else. A: Obviously, it’s something else. And Sal
and her boyfriend Nathan are determined to find out. Their search leads them to Dr. Shanti,
a crazy mad scientist who has relocated her lab to a rundown bowling alley and provides
Sal with some of the answers she has been looking for. [music] A: Before we get this review started I just
want to get this out of the way. C: What? A: Everytime I heard Symbogen all I heard
was Timosil. C: What? A: Teamosil C: Nope. A: Teamosil: [music] A: Was that just me? C: Yup. A: Huh…I don’t know where that came from. C: I want to go into this book without comparing
it to Feed, but it’s impossible, because now I know what this writer is capable of.
And instead of unique and fascinating characters I got Sal. A: Sal isn’t Shaun and definitely isn’t
George. Waking up with no memories has made her hesitant and she is terrified of being
in another car crash. She takes care of carnivorous plants, and doesn’t have any friends besides
her boyfriend. She’s like some warped crazy cat lady. [music] C: Sal isn’t particularly whiney, but she’s
not particular anything else either. After Shaun and George her perspective was kind
of like taking a sip of your drink, expecting Coke and getting diet instead. A: Her boyfriend Nathan is the exact same
kind of bland. Mostly he is just steadfast and responsible and… steadfast and responsible.
He has a “tragic” past, but we don’t find out about it until it hits us in the
face. C: His big secret is that Dr. Shanti, the
woman who helped Steven Banks create the Intestinal Bodyguard, is his mother. Wooo. A: Snape kills Dumbledore. Sorry, I thought
we were just shouting spoilers. C: And characters that don’t come off as
bland fly off the crazy scale. Characters like Tansy, a repeat of Foxy from Blackout,
and Dr. Shanti who is like another Dr. Abbey. Grant writes her crazies well and you can
tell she is a big fan of characters with multiple screws loose but they aren’t as flushed
out I would have liked. [music] A: Some things are done well in this novel.
For one thing, instead of a faceless villain we have someone to blame the parasite zombies
on. Someone we can really hold accountable. C: And then there is Don’t Go Out Alone,
a fictional children’s book that Sal encounters on her quest for answers. The characters use
the book as a sort of code and metaphor for what’s going on. A: But this fictional book is more interesting
than the rest of Parasite. It’s about two children who had a monster under their bed,
but their parents scared it away. Then they receive a letter from the monster urging them
to both come find him and don’t go out alone, eventually turning into monsters themselves. C: It feels like if it were real it would
have been my favorite book as a kid. Don’t Go Out Alone is to Parasite what Tales of
Beedle the Bard is to Harry Potter. Overlay Tales of beedle the Bard But it’s good points don’t overshadow
the flaws. It’s easily pre- A: dictable. Within the first tw- C: enty pages you can guess the big twist
at the end. A: And the twists that you can’t guess C: Come out of left field. Things like Sal
meeting and falling in love with Nathan by coincidence and his mother just happens to
be the exact person who can tell them what is going on. A: Even the premise that you can eat a parasite
and have it administer you designer drugs like it spent seven miserable years in med
school is stretching it. It doesn’t strike me as believable as the origins of the zombie
plague in Feed, or at least, wasn’t explained as well.
Grant spends too much time setting up her world not enough time actually letting her
characters run around in it. C: You need to remember this book is the first
in a trilogy. We might get to the good stuff later on. A: But I want the good stuff noooooow C: The fact that this is the first book in
a trilogy is what saves it. The entire book is hinging on a twist that the reader can
call in the first few paragraphs. It takes the entire book for Grant to get the exposition
out of the way, so her crazy train can go direction her heart desires.
And we all know just how easily Mira Grant can descend into crazy town. [music] A: You’ve already spoiled enough today. C: Come on it’s not really a spoiler! It’s
so ridiculous it’s like how in Deadline- [music] A: Parasite is an interesting premise with
poor execution. If I hadn’t read any of her previous books I expect that this one
would have impressed me more. But that being said it’s nice to have a book where the
romantic sub plot never interferes or causes tension. Parasite shows promise and I (looks
over to Read possibly duck taped mouth closed?) will definitely be picking up the sequel.