Review | Recursion – Blake Crouch

As I’ve mentioned on the blog a couple of times, I joined my first in person book club. The first book I read for this club was Recursion by Blake Crouch. I’m not a big science fiction reader, but it is a genre I’m curious about and this book sounded very interesting. Keep on reading to find out what I thought!

Memory makes reality.

That’s what NYC cop Barry Sutton is learning, as he investigates the devastating phenomenon the media has dubbed False Memory Syndrome—a mysterious affliction that drives its victims mad with memories of a life they never lived.

That’s what neuroscientist Helena Smith believes. It’s why she’s dedicated her life to creating a technology that will let us preserve our most precious memories. If she succeeds, anyone will be able to re-experience a first kiss, the birth of a child, the final moment with a dying parent.

As Barry searches for the truth, he comes face to face with an opponent more terrifying than any disease—a force that attacks not just our minds, but the very fabric of the past. And as its effects begin to unmake the world as we know it, only he and Helena, working together, will stand a chance at defeating it.

But how can they make a stand when reality itself is shifting and crumbling all around them?

At once a relentless pageturner and an intricate science-fiction puzzlebox about time, identity, and memory, Recursion is a thriller as only Blake Crouch could imagine it—and his most ambitious, mind-boggling, irresistible work to date.


When I read the synopsis, I was really curious about the False Memory Syndrome. After reading the book, I have to say the book barely is about that syndrome and goes a whole different way. Recursion was still a book I flew through and needed to know how it would end.

Our main character Helena wants to make is possible to preserve memories, because her mother has Alzheimer’s Disease and she hates seeing what this is doing with her. When she gets an interview for an investor to work on this project she has to take it. Things just don’t go as planned.

Recursion isn’t a book I can really tell you much about without spoiling the plot, but it’s one that makes you think. Would you want to re-experience special memories? Go back and have it happen all again for the first time? This seems to be a pretty innocent thing, but if it gets in the wrong hands things can go wrong pretty quickly. It’s scary to actually think that I see something like that happening if tools were developed in our world to do this. I know this is vague!

This book is mostly plot driven. If you want to really know and care about characters while reading, I wouldn’t recommend this book. I feel we don’t get to know them enough to really care about Barry and Helena. In many ways you want to, but there just isn’t anything for you to hold on to and care about. On the other hand, it’s action packed. The author had me on the edge of my seat near the end just needing to know how things turn out.

Recursion is definitely a book that makes you think and I loved discussing it with a group of people. Have you read anything by Blake Crouch? What did you think? Let me know in the comments. I’d love to hear from you!

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