My review title might sound flippant, but honestly? I was still deep in that blissful bookworm state of ‘what happens next?’ right up to the last pages of this excellent story.
This is science fiction that’s well-grounded in high tech, but never lets you forget that everything always comes down to a human level – our passions, flaws, strengths, and weaknesses are the real driving forces behind our actions.
A premise as ambitious as the discovery of a cure for death could easily turn into a boring utopian existence. But, we’re saved from that by the always-scheming ‘Overs’ – immortal humans who are determined to save mankind from itself. They hoard their cure for death, along with other medical and technological advances, only releasing it in trickles as they see fit to a society they feel they must guide and govern as if they were children.
Human nature being what it is, though, there are ‘Unders’ who desperately want what the Overs have and are willing to turn terrorist to get their hands on it. Both sides are absolutely convinced that they are acting for the greater good of the human race.
And then there’s that AI… what’s her end-game, anyway?
Laced throughout this tension-filled scenario is the sweet love story of an Under boy and an Over girl. But this isn’t as simple as the cliché ‘wrong side of the tracks loves a richie’ scenario that’s played out in so many stories (and John Hughes movies). What starts as an intimate, private affair sets off a series of events that leads to a redefining of humanity’s future, on Earth and beyond.
I enjoyed the book immensely, and will even admit that I read it more slowly than I would normally read a novel. I was savoring the craftsmanship, or to use one of my favorite terms, the wordsmithery. Curley’s use of language gives us a firm grasp of a world that’s been broken and is trying to get back on its feet. The action takes us from not-so-bad-off Denver Colorado, to a horrific, hopeless version of Los Angeles, to a Sri Lanka like we’ve never seen before… but may have dreamed of.
I am eagerly looking forward to reading the sequel.
My thanks to author Sean P. Curley for providing me with a review copy of this book. This review is my honest and unbiased opinion.