Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Game Control by Lionel Shriver

Unabridged Audiobook
This week, I listened to the unabridged audio version of Game Control by Lionel Shriver and read by Laural Merlington. It was my first experience with anything written by Lionel Shriver.

In my opinion, the best part of Game Control is the reading performance of Laural Merlington. She's an awesome reader and I wouldn't mind hearing her read another book. I also enjoyed that the audio version of Game Control I listened to was the unabridged  version, as I prefer unabridged audiobooks to an abridged version whenever possible. Other than the positive things I've mentioned, I did NOT enjoy Game Control very much at all. 

The two characters are extremely annoying. In fact, I didn't like any of the characters in this book. I feel that the character of Eleanor Merritt is a spineless, people pleasing woman with no back bone. Simply abhorrent! While the character of Calvin Piper is an egotistical maniac, who is obsessed with demographics and the desire to decrease the world's population by 2 billion people. Eleanor Merritt and Calvin Piper make quite a pair throughout this book. The more Eleanor hangs out with Calvin the more of his personality she takes on and she becomes more cynical and jaded, leaving behind her spineless ways. Calvin's actions and reasons in wanting to decrease the world's population were cold and heartless... And to think that Eleanor didn't try to put a stop to Calvin's ideas was horrifying. 

The storyline wasn't appealing to me either. Game Control just rubbed me the wrong way. There were several times I almost gave up listening to Game Control, but persisted thinking that the storyline would take a turn for the better. I have no desire to read or listen to another book by Lionel Shriver.

Book Summary of Game Control on the Barnes & Noble website:
Eleanor Merritt, a do-gooding American family-planning worker, was drawn to Kenya to improve the lot of the poor. Unnervingly, she finds herself falling in love with the beguiling Calvin Piper despite, or perhaps because of, his misanthropic theories about population control and the future of the human race. Surely, Calvin whispers seductively in Eleanor’s ear, if the poor are a responsibility they are also an imposition. 
Set against the vivid backdrop of shambolic modern-day Africa – a continent now primarily populated with wildlife of the two-legged sort – Lionel Shriver’s Game Control is a wry, grimly comic tale of bad ideas and good intentions. With a deft, droll touch, Shriver highlights the hypocrisy of lofty intellectuals who would “save” humanity but who don’t like people.

Until my next post, happy reading!

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