A Fractured Infinity

Titan. Nov. 2022. 368p. ISBN 9781803360386. pap. $15.95. SF
DEBUT Hayes Figueiredo makes documentaries, but in another universe he created the Envisioner, a machine that predicts the future. After the device is discovered in his universe, Hayes is recruited to study it and falls for fellow researcher Yusuf—who he married in that alternate world. When Hayes is forced to choose between a future with Yusuf and saving the rest of humanity, the two flee into a series of alternate realities. Pursued by the version of himself who built the Envisioner, Hayes will have to decide what he’s willing to sacrifice for the man he loves. Hayes’s and Yusuf’s relationship drives the plot and is well-drawn and compelling. Yusuf’s neurodivergence is portrayed sensitively, while Hayes is flawed but sympathetic as the parallel worlds concept allows him to struggle with himself and his choices. His filmmaking background influences his narration, adding an engaging layer of meta commentary to the story.
VERDICT Multiverse stories are popular right now, and Tavares’s first novel will appeal to fans of the concept, along with readers who enjoy science fiction that digs into characters’ relationships in a setting that spans worlds. Recommended.
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