THE ANGEL BUG READ REVIEWS
The Angel Bug (blurb)
‘These memoirs may be the only evidence left of what really happened, where it came from and how it spread.’
When Gabbi Johnston, a quiet, fifty-something botanist at Eden, was shown the unusual red leaves on the Moringa tree, she had no idea what was wrong. What she did know was that the legendary Dr Luke Adamson was arriving soon - and that he would insist on investigating it.
This is the unassuming start to a maelstrom of discovery and change - with Gabbi swept up in it. What starts out as an accident turns into something illicit, clandestine and unethical – but is it, as Adamson claims, really all for the best?
‘The Angel Bug’, Ann Foweraker’s fourth novel, is set at the Eden Project in Cornwall, UK. This is a contemporary novel combining science fact and fiction, told by the people at the heart of the discovery.
“The Angel Bug is a story like no other. It does not sit within any literary genre but spans many categories of the writers art. Part science-fiction, the science fact is unerringly accurate and it is significant that Sir Tim Smit, founder and creator of the Eden project where the story is played out, agreed to feature as a real-life character.
Gabbi is a middle aged widowed botanist temporarily running the plant science department at Eden whilst a new head of department is found – when the sassy Sapphira arrives to take this post, there is friction; made worse by the arrival of an eminent and flamboyant plant scientist from the States on a celebrity lecture tour. Luke and Gabbi had been at university together; he had been a friend of Gabbi’s late husband. And then there is the leading character in the tale – Moringa oelifera, the rain-forest tree growing in the Eden biome which is Luke’s speciality and whose leaves have suddenly turned red. The implications of this turn out to have a global impact.
The story is told in diary format – day by day, alternating between Gabbi and Luke, as events unfold which will take them both into the realms of almost incredible (and yet entirely possible?) science. Along the way there are the threads of everyday life, working and professional relationships, family ties, the plights of the homeless, global greed and politics – all set within the so recognisable environment of Eden and the surrounding countryside.
I wanted to read this at one sitting but at the same time I wanted to savour every word and follow the plot carefully so as not to miss a twist or turn. I soon felt I knew these people – their characters stayed true throughout the text; their reactions to events always predictable – though one could definitely not say the same of the events themselves! To the end I was unsure how things would unravel.
A brilliant story, written in the unusual style of contemporaneous first person dialogue by two characters. Whilst the two speakers are relating the same events, their individual points of view are clearly different as their own stories weave together to create the rich embroidery of the narrative. A triumph.” SD Hereford
From the moment I clicked onto The Angel Bug I was hooked.
It is at the world renowned Eden Project in Cornwall where an unexpected discovery is made, a discovery that could make seismic social changes to the world we live in.
The story is told by the two principal characters, they alternate as the tale unfolds and by doing this Ann Foweraker cleverly creates a debate, covering both moral and ethical issues.
Although fiction, this book touches on matters that concern us all, not least, the rights of an individual and the consequences of political decisions but I must emphasise, this is an easy read, it flows and is almost impossible to put down once started, very enjoyable. RF Cornwall
This is a highly original book, part science fiction, part mystery and part love story. Within this setting the characters are low key and believable--not all are likeable but their very unpleasantness is a necessary part of the plot.
I can't describe it too thoroughly because this would give away the endings of the three strands of the construction,. I can say that all my growing questions were answered, except for the open-ended one at the finish which I had begun to wonder about and which is the perfect way to conclude the story.
It is an easy read because the characters are never confusing. They are well-defined and act logically according to their initially developed personalities.
By half-way through I began to wait for unexpected and probably unpleasant twists and indeed they do come but these also are not exaggerated because this is neither the Utopia or Dystopia which would have been easier to imagine, nor does it descend into an easy religious pattern although the ethics and ambitions of the various persons are questioned throughout.
It is a book to re-read as I want to go back to think about the various relationships now that I understand the plot development. It would be ideal for both adult book group discussion and it could be labelled "young adult" for having teenagers consider the morality (if this wouldn’t be a kiss of death).
Satisfying and enjoyable! Erika W - USA
Having read all of this author's previous works I can categorically say that this is by far the best... a contemporary novel set largely in the heart of Cornwall, an area I love and the Eden Project is a particular favourite. This novel combines science fact and science fiction with huge ethical decisions. This is all worked out using mainly likable characters; people you are interested in enough to want to know what they are thinking as they narrate the story.
A great easy read; nothing too heavy but at the same time definitely no lightweight chick-lit! NH
At the start I didn't like the Luke character so much so that I didn't want to continue reading. I persevered although it was hard going. It is not the type of book I would read by choice but I must say I really enjoyed it once Luke had been changed into a nicer person.
Come the end, and reading the far reaching outcome, I was unable to put the reader down. So...........a very good read and would recommend it! DK