the odds 

The Odds

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by Robert J. Peterson




The Odds is decidedly odd.  It is a post-apocalyptic novel that really defies pigeon-holing.  It is sort of scifi, sort of fantasy, sort of a farcical comedy, sort of I really don’t know what.  It could have been a disaster, but Peterson makes it work.

 The story follows Eldridge as he enters a lethal Xiang tournament (based on chess) in order to get out of debt.  Eldridge is a certified bad-ass, but one that seems to fly under the radar.  He takes the reader on a rollicking trip through a rich, detailed, and totally weird world that evolved in what is now the Nevada desert.  Much of the story takes place in Dedrick, a city that it totally underground and run by what are essentially bookies who take bets on almost anything. 

 If you are a techie who wants his or her science fiction to be scientifically accurate, this book may not be for you.  The Odds makes its own rules, and if the reader releases his or her grip on reality, then the book grabs the reader and never lets go.  I personally tend to be anal about the science in scifi, but I had no problem throwing that out the window and just enjoying the ride.

 The book is amazing complex, but it does not bog down.  It is one action-packed scene after another.  Violence is rampant, but it feels more of the comic-book variety, fun rather than sobering. 

 The Odds is totally unique.  I thoroughly enjoyed it and enthusiastically recommend it.




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