Replica by Jack Heath
This is a cinematic thriller with a chilling core wrapped deep within twists, turns and constant surprises. Although this book took a while to warm up, the pace grows exponentially and by the end you are left gasping for breath.
Jack Heath uses a select crew of characters (and he uses some of them more than once) that some reviewers argue are under-developed but, isn't this distance a likely conclusion of the fact that his characters are - in fact - trying to interact with a robot?
This is a timely novel that raises questions about how technology is evolving, what defines a person or being and anticipates resultant problems of identity. Replica is easily spoilt and so this review is light on plot details, suffice to say that if this book starts as a marathon, it ends as a sprint.
Best bits: Action filled climax on-top of climax - journeying deeper into the servers holding the webs of this complex story together.
Worst bits: For some it was the rather abrupt ending, but for me it took a while to get into this book and so waiting for the story to actually begin was the worst part.
A teen book with clear political messages that draw attention to how we form who we are. Perfect for sci-fi fans but don't let that put you off - plenty of romance too!
Keywords: LGBT, identity, technology, thriller.
Buy the book from the Oxford University Press website here.