webelos8’s CBR V, Review 6: “Read No Evil” by Steven W. White

Ask nearly anyone who reads anything for fun, and they will tell you that certain books can change them, at least temporarily. They’ll tell you that it’s fun to be transported through words to a different place or time; it’s wonderful to be someone different for a while; or that hey, even non-fiction can make you smarter. 

But can a book really change you? Change how you’re actually hard-wired to do certain things? Affect your personality permanently? Not in an “I read Atlas Shrugged/Catcher in the Rye so I’m going to be insufferable for a few years” type of way, but real, fundamental, permanent change? What power, good or bad, can a book actually have over a person? What if a book could change you? 

In “Read No Evil”, by Steven W. White, the author dives into the theory that a book, specifically a digital e-book, can really change a person. The main conceit of the book is that it’s affecting all of these people around this town-suicide, missing persons, violent tendencies-boiled down to this book.

To get to the root of the problem, the protagonist, Jan Fitzgerald, reads the book and we read along with her. Who wrote it? Why? How is affecting everyone? Jan believes she is immune, mostly, to the effects of this book. In one episode, we find out she isn’t completely. 

Overall, it was a fairly quick read, and the story-within-the-story is a basic quest, and sadly, not available on Amazon. I really did like this story.

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