Jumper - Steven Gould

[Originally posted on tumblr on 15. August 2013]

 

Did you guys ever see the movie ‘Jumper’ with Hayden Christensen?
The book 'Jumper' by Steven Gould isn’t anything like it. According to some Goodreads users they actually adapted the second book. Either way, this book has nothing of the lightheartedness of the movie.
It pretty much starts out with the main character getting beaten by his drunk father and him running away and having other horrible experiences while doing so. He tries figuring out his ability to teleport, which he then calls ‘jumping’. The thing with the teleporting is, that the main character, Davy, has to have a good memory of the place he wants to ‘jump’ to, so simply looking at a picture won’t do. Later in the book though it’s alright to use binoculars (probably because you can’t see endlessly far away with them).
Probably one of the few things they got right in the movie is that Davy stole money from a bank, only that he felt endlessly bad about it in the book. Oh, and he loves books. He loves books so much that when the police starts investigating him (because he jumped a police officer who abused his wife away), the very first thing he saves are his books.
But yes, there is a love story in this book. Millie is actually a few years older than Davy and even comments on it with Davy arguing that the social construct of it being okay if a man is older than the woman is bullshit. I have to draw my imaginary hat for the author there because he brings up a thing that is still a problem in reality (it says 1992 in the beginning on the book so I assume that’s when it was published first - and we STILL this issue with our society!). Millie is actually a really, really great character who has a life outside of meeting Davy - who she meets at first only on the weekends and not even every weekend until she gets to know about his teleporting ability. She’s very intelligent too. Actually, that was one of the best pulled-off love subplots I’ve read so far.

The book suddenly takes a turn when Davy meets his mother aand … well, I don’t want to at least spoiler the thing that happens next.
It takes another turn when Davy decides within good personal reason to go after terrorists. This goes so far that the NSA tries to get him. He then jumps NSA agents to various places in the Middle East.
Anyway, this portion of the plot shows how easy it is to suddenly be a wanted person, although, let’s just put it like it is: Davy is quite unique with his teleportation ability. (Nope, there are no other teleports in the first book.)

What I liked most about this book was how the characters’ emotions were portrayed. I mean, you get a male teenager as your main character (he turns 18 in the book) and he actually shows emotions. In our societey emotions seem to be bad for men or something. When you read really old books, like, let’s say ‘The Picture of Dorian Gray’ or ‘The Count of Monte Christo’ (I can really only name the ones I read) you’ll see how sentimental the male characters actually get.
Also, I LOVED Millie. She’s a person in this book, not just a name or only the love interest for the main character. Every character in this book though is anything but flat.

So yeah, I liked it, even if the terrorist theme confused me at first. You know, since I was never affected by any of this on a personal level it often left me with confusion. I mean, I know that terrorism is absolutely wrong but that’s a thought and not a feeling. Well, this book helped me with this a bit. Also, considering how old this book is I’m really sad that people still have to go through all of this.

Oh, also, have these things I thought were very interesting:

book quote
Davy’s self-awareness that shrugging so much is actually weird. It happens so often in books and movies that you often start to wonder.


The second one I can’t seem to upload because it turns the picture sideways. WHY TUMBLR.

It says: “We saw a bad movie after dinner, so bad it was funny, and amused ourselves with whispering alternative dialogue.”

So essentially you get Mystery Science Theatre there. :) Gosh, I actually also did that with friends and it’s hilarious. I love finding something like this in an actual book.