Monday 30 January 2012

Review: Mortal Chaos - Matt Dickinson

The Butterfly Effect: the scientific theory that a single occurrence, no matter how small, can change the course of the universe forever.

Jamie and Will have bunked off school to go hunting. Kuni, an 18-year-old Japanese climber is approaching the summit of Mount Everest. Tina is piloting a troublesome flight from Heathrow to Moscow. Six-year-old Bakili is desperately guarding his family's crops from bloodthirsty baboons in Malawi. Shelton, an unhinged father in Washington DC, is hooked on revenge and building a bomb . . .

Flashing between characters around the world, Mortal Chaos is a heart-stopping adventure that will leave readers breathless. Though the action starts with an innocent beat of a butterfly's wings in sleepy Wiltshire, this sets in motion a global chain of events that build to a nerve-jangling climax of mayhem and destruction.

Some will live. Some will die. All are connected.

Mortal Chaos Series:
Mortal Chaos
Deep Oblivion
Speed Freaks

Visit Matt Dickinson's website for more information

I was intrigued about Mortal Chaos from the moment I read the blurb "Some will live. Some will die. All are connected". I already knew about the Butterfly Effect but I was really curious to see how Matt Dickinson would take that theory and spin it into a story. How do you manage to connect a jockey racing at Newbury, two boys bunking off of school, a female pilot, a Japanese girl climbing up Mount Everest and a young boy in Africa? If you're Matt Dickinson you do it in a story that is fast paced, action packed and full of twists that will have readers on the edge of their seats!

Mortal Chaos is written in short, snappy 1-2 page chapters that really build the tension as you follow multiple characters throughout their day. I was a bit worried that it would be hard to keep track of so many different people but I was surprised at how easy it was to keep each story line separate. The book starts with a butterfly but doesn't end with a hurricane - it does end in disaster though. Some of the links between characters are obvious but will have surprising consequences and other links are slowly revealed as the story progresses. The book will really make you think about how the smallest thing like leaving for work 5 minutes late can have a huge impact on the lives of people you may never even meet.

The author is skilled at making you think one thing will happen and then surprising you with something completely different. In a way it reminded me a bit of the Final Destination films where you know something terrible is coming, you have multiple moments where you think you know what that will be and then suddenly you're blindsided by something that you never even guessed at.

Mortal Chaos is a fast and addictive read that it is easy to devour in one sitting. I was excited to find that this is the first book in a series and definitely have the next book Deep Oblivion at the top of my wish list. I would highly recommend the story to anyone who is looking for an action packed and surprising story and think the short chapters make this ideal for teenagers who don't do a lot of reading. That isn't to say that avid readers won't also love it though - the story is compelling enough to captivate readers of any age.

Source: Received from OUP in exchange for an honest review

Other Reviews:
If you have reviewed this book on your blog please leave a link to your review in the comments & I'll add the link here.

Paperback / Kindle:


  1. The short snappy chapters really do add to the tension. A fabulous book.

  2. I'm really enjoying the reviews of this one from the blog tour! I hadn't come across it before and it's certainly one I'll look out for :)

  3. @ Viv - it really is a fab book isn't it! I can't wait to get my hands on the next one :o)

    @ Clover - you definitely should look out for this one, I really enjoyed it & am sure you would too :o)



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