Misspent Youth

Misspent Youth

Book - 2008
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Random House, Inc.
Readers have learned to expect the unexpected from Peter F. Hamilton. Now the master of space opera focuses on near-future Earth and one most unusual family. The result is a coming-of-age tale like no other. By turns comic, erotic, and tragic, Misspent Youth is a profound and timely exploration of all that divides and unites fathers and sons, men and women, the young and the old.

2040. After decades of concentrated research and experimentation in the field of genetic engineering, scientists of the European Union believe they have at last conquered humankind’s most pernicious foe: old age. For the first time, technology holds out the promise of not merely slowing the aging process but actually reversing it. The ancient dream of the Fountain of Youth seems at hand.

The first subject for treatment is seventy-eight-year-old philanthropist Jeff Baker. After eighteen months in a rejuvenation tank, Jeff emerges looking like a twenty-year-old. And the change is more than skin deep. From his hair cells down to his DNA, Jeff is twenty–with a breadth of life experience.

But while possessing the wisdom of a septuagenarian at age twenty is one thing, raging testosterone is another, as Jeff discovers when he attempts to pick up his life where he left off. Suddenly his oldest friends seem, well, old. Jeff’s trophy wife looks better than she ever did. His teenage son, Tim, is more like a younger brother. And Tim’s nubile girlfriend is a conquest too tempting to resist.

Jeff’s rejuvenated libido wreaks havoc on the lives of his friends and family, straining his relationship with Tim to the breaking point. It’s as if youth is a drug and Jeff is wasted on it. But if so, it’s an addiction he has no interest in kicking.

As Jeff’s personal life spirals out of control, the European Union undergoes a parallel meltdown, attacked by shadowy separatist groups whose violent actions earn both condemnation and applause. Now, in one terrifying instant, the personal and the political will intersect, and neither Jeff nor Tim–or the Union itself–will ever be the same again.

Baker & Taylor
Forty years into the future, following decades of research, the European Union is finally capable of rejuvenating a human being and selects Jeff Baker, an elderly philanthropist, as the first subject for treatment, but Jeff soon discovers that his new youth could come with unexpected consequences. 25,000 first printing.

Baker
& Taylor

Hoping to reverse the body's genetic clock to return human beings to vigorous youth, scientists come up with their first human guinea pig, a seventy-year-old philanthropist, but their first efforts are disastrous, in more ways that one.

Publisher: New York : Del Rey/Ballantine Books, [2008]
Edition: 1st American ed
ISBN: 9780345461643
0345461649
Characteristics: 403 p. ; 22 cm

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RunningJoke
Oct 14, 2015

The "American" edition was poorly edited (punctuation and plot-wise); perhaps the "Original British" edition was better?

KasiRosanne is correct when they state that this has very little science fiction in it. It ends up "taking a back seat" to "human interpersonal relations" (maybe the author was experimenting with his "softcore-erotic writing skills"?); even though it is ostensibly about life-extension technology and its impact.

k
KasiRosanne
Feb 10, 2011

Not one of his better books. A bit lacking on the technical Science Fiction side of things, unlike his trilogies. More about human relationships (sometimes concentrating a bit too much on the physcial ones to put it in a polite way).
Read it if you want to or better yet read one of his other books.

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RunningJoke
Oct 14, 2015

RunningJoke thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 16 and 99

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