Recorded Books. Aug. 2023. 17 hrs. ISBN 9781705096406. $29.99. SF
Boisterous Sunil Rao is a former MI6 agent who can instantly tell truth from lies. Adam Rubenstein is a U.S. Air Force monolith who hasn’t met an emotion he can’t repress. Together, they’re hunting for fakes generated by Prophet, a substance that creates objects from childhood that put their creators into a coma. This mission might be Rao’s only chance to escape an institution and Adam’s last chance to be around Rao. But as they try to hunt down and contain Prophet before it infects the world, their internal worlds and romantic tensions come to a head. Writer and musician Blaché and Macdonald (H Is for Hawk) have written a slow-burn sci-fi character study reminiscent of the best X-Files fan fiction. Though the pace dips somewhat in the middle, the allure of the characters keeps readers pushing through. Jake Fairbrother narrates most of the book from Rao’s perspective, giving him charisma and unpolished edges; his attempt at an American accent charms. Ryan Forde Iosco narrates as Adam, selling Adam’s seething emotions. Charlotte Davey narrates interstitials, giving added mystery and focus to the narrative.
VERDICT A twisty sci-fi plot paves the way for slow-burn romance in this uniquely told collaboration.
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