4 out of 5 Stars
Geoffrey Bartell is under too much pressure between legal and political troubles at his genetics company and his home life. In order to handle it all, he creates a clone of himself. It’s the perfect solution for him to be able to pick up the pieces of his marriage while still dedicating all of his time to his company … until his clone has an anomaly and begins to deviate from his plan. Now Geoffrey is fighting for his life in another manner. He’s on trial for murder and needs to prove he’s innocent of the charge.
I’ll admit I didn’t know what to expect from this novella when I started it. I didn’t have much interest in the cloning aspect, but I’m glad I read it anyway because the story was about more than that. It’s told in mostly alternating chapters between the current courtroom drama and several months prior when the clone first came into being. It drew me in right from the start trying to put the pieces together to figure out what happened. The glimpses the reader is given of the past weave perfectly in with what’s going on in Geoffrey’s trial.
Although some of the details were a little scientific, the author did a nice job of dumbing it down for the reader. In fact, the majority of the information on cloning wasn’t even necessary to understand. The author made you believe it was possible with the focus being on what happened once the clone was created.
I was pretty sure I figured out the “who dunnit” early on, but in no way was I tempted to abandon the story. It wasn’t just a question of who committed the crime, but also what the crime was.
If there was anything about this novella I didn’t like, it was that entire chapters were printed in italics. It was used to clearly distinguish what happened in the past from the current courtroom scenes, but it wasn’t really necessary. That’s just a pet peeve of mine though, and I’m sure other readers won’t be bothered by it. There were some minor formatting issues, but they didn’t bother me too much.
I would definitely recommend this novella and read more by this author.