Customer Review

Reviewed in the United States on March 19, 2016
This is the first book in a series by Anderson and Jeff Rovin. It does read like the first book in the series, with the introduction of a lot of characters and locations, and it isn't until later in the book that the authors start tying all the threads together and it starts making sense.

The main character, Caitlin O'Hara, a child psychiatrist, is a strong, capable woman with obvious compassion for her young clients. A key character is her deaf son Jacob, who at ten, behaves like a ten year old rather than a super wise being or a pain in the neck. Unusual, and a relief. And also nice to see a single parent who is coping well rather than struggling, which is another trope the authors have managed to avoid. One of the key challenges Caitlin has in the book, is coming to grips with evidence and experience which is outside her normal, scientifically validated world view, which is interesting ground to cover.

Caitlin is asked by a good friend, Ben, to assist a teenager who witnessed the near assassination of her father, a diplomat from Kashmir. Ben is an interpreter for the UN, which gives Caitlin a lot of access to people and places most of us don't have. Trying to work out what has happened to the young Maanik, and the cause of her weird behaviour, is at the heart of the drama of the book. Around this central premise is the fact that her father is key to peace talks between Pakistan and India, which forces them into hiding Maanik's problem. The appearance of other teenagers with similar symptoms around the globe just adds to the confusion for Caitlin to solve. Throw in some treasure hunters with oddly manufactured symobls on meteorites, and the stage is set.

The book was well written, and the characters work within their roles. I think the second book will be a better book, as the authors won't need all the introductory material present in the first. I'm also hoping that a number of the minor characters will continue in the second book. There were a lot of plot points left unexplained, and there is plenty of material for the authors to explore in the second.

The series isn't hard science, and it isn't X-Files, but I did enjoy it for what it was. I'm looking forward to reading the second installment.
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