Thursday, March 8, 2012

The Midwich Cuckoos by John Wyndham

Just like two of the other novels by the same author, The Day of the Triffids and The ChrysalidsThe Midwich Cuckoos by John Wyndham has a very interesting premise. The story is set in a British village called Midwich, where all the women become impregnated with alien children after a mysterious event known as the "Day Out" (in which people become unconscious for an entire day). The Children (capitalized to indicate that they are aliens) have different physical properties from human children; they have golden eyes and grow at a much faster rate. But more importantly, they are capable of exerting control on human minds, and seem to have two distinct group minds (one for boys and one for girls). And when they begin to harm and kill other humans because of some small offences, the community starts feeling endangered and begins to try to eliminate them.

To my disappointment, the book was not as good as the synopsis sounded. Everything was fine, just that I got the feeling of "that's it?" when I was on the very last page. I mean, the book never went deep into anything, only slightly touched upon concepts like evolution and survival. This is like the other two novels by the same author that I have read: all three have very interesting stories/settings, but I feel that all three of them could have explored their themes more.

However, this is not to say that the book is bad. True, I like The Day of the Triffids and The Chrysalids better (since they have more events), but The Midwich Cuckoos is still a very interesting book that is definitely worthwhile to read.