Saturday, December 1, 2007

Codex by Lev Grossman - Book Review

By Lev Grossman
Harcourt Books 2004

About to depart on his first vacation in years, Edward Wozny, a hotshot young investment banker, is sent to help one of his firm's most important and mysterious clients. His task is to search their library stacks for a precious medieval codex, a treasure kept sealed away for many years and for many reasons.

At the same time, Edward is also involved in a computer game but in this game he takes a wrong turn, and finds an "easter egg". When he asks for help to get out of the easter egg, he discovers that the codex is also an easter egg.

An Easter Egg is a term that refers to an undocumented feature or novelty that is in a [computer] program that the makers of that program placed in the program for additional fun and credits. Easter Eggs are in no way destructive to any software or hardware within the computer and are usually meant for something unique and fun.

Enlisting the help of passionate medievalist Margaret Napier, Edward breaks into the stacks of a specialist library to find a box of books missing from the family library and thought to be stored there for safekeeping. They find the box, full of old books but not the codex. Until Margaret gets an idea and looks more closely at the old books.

The entire story takes place over two weeks. The story reads somewhat dry in places, but it is very interesting. Edward is relatively developed, but Margaret is not. I feel she could have been a lot more developed. There is very little background on her.

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