Titan. May 2019. 416p. ISBN 9781789090789. pap. $14.95; ebk. ISBN 9781789090796. SF
In 1808, the event known as “the Fall” changes the lives of the small village of Ilam and history for generations. A meteor shower covered the area, as townspeople fled or took shelter in their homes. Those who stayed were changed, “gifted” with the ability to create Skins—the townsfolk (now called Charmers) “shed” a clone from their bodies every seven years, emerging youthful and healthy. The clones, or Skins, fade away shortly after the shedding. Well over 100 years later, Charmers are the most wealthy, powerful members of society: glamorous movie stars, business owners, and the highest-ranking officials. Until Russell Handler, a government aide for a small, inconsequential branch working with the Great British Prosperity Party, and a former reporter named Gerry Chafik independently stumble upon a conspiracy with international implications.
VERDICT Major (You Don’t Belong Here; Blighters) takes a unique concept and creates a compelling plot with engaging, multidimensional characters. Recommended for sf readers and mystery lovers who are willing to expand their horizons.
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