Friday, April 3, 2009

Review - Jumper: Griffin's Story by Steven Gould

In 1992, the book Jumper was published. In 2004, a sequel called Reflex followed, and quickly after in 2008, the movie of Jumper. It was only loosely based on the books and reimagined the "Jumper universe" and changed the atmosphere of the story considerably. Jumper: Griffin's Story was published along with the movie, using the reimagined universe and the character Griffin, who was created for the movie.

The basic idea is that some people, "jumpers," can teleport, and "paladins" are trying to kill them all.

My first experience with the whole thing was the movie. LOVED it. It was both quick and interesting, and original while dealing with old themes. Griffin was my favorite character.

I wasn't thrilled when I found it had been a book, but I read the first book first. I was glad I didn't have high expectations, because it was miserable. It dragged on for over 300 pages, nothing but abuse and misery and terrorists and whining teenagers.

I was interested in reading this one afterward, because of the reboot. Unfortunately, it was almost exactly like the first Jumper book. The plot was exactly the same... kid learns how to teleport, a bunch of terrible things happen to kid, kid makes lair for self, kid finds a girlfriend, more terrible things, ends in tears. I couldn't tell any difference between Griffin and David from the first book. They had the same voice and responses even though they're ostensibly from different backgrounds.

Also, this book doesn't ADD anything to the movie. No new revelations are made, no insight is gained on Griffin's life. The Griffin I knew from the movie was very different, more self-assured and angrier. More interesting and dynamic. I would've been a lot more interested in seeing how Griffin got to that point, or even a novelization of the movie from his perspective, rather than a story of how Griffin started that's basically the old book with the names changed.

What I'm trying to say is this: Watch the movie. Don't read the books. I realize this is backward from what a lot of people are saying, but it's the truth. The books Are Not Good. The movie Is Very Good. A better option for a book about teleportation might be the classic The Stars My Destination by Alfred Bester, although I haven't read it yet.

Buy Jumper: Griffin's Story


  1. I loved this movie and am hoping they make a sequel since the ending left that open as a possibility.

  2. I definitely would recommend Stars My Destination. Great book!

  3. The Stars My Destination is one of my all-time favorite science fiction books. I hope you'll try it some time. :-)


Hi guys, made some changes to the comments... You don't have to go to the separate page anymore, and I had to start requiring word verification because of a bunch of spam comments.