The year is 2042 and the
is a very different place from the one we know today. Oil and gas are heavily
regulated and more environmentally friendly energy sources are the norm. The
FBI and the National Security agency have merged to form the Federal Justice
Agency. Within the agency there is an elite squad of agents called Special
Crime Investigators. These investigators tackle the most difficult and most
Devlin Grace is one of the
newest members of the Special Crime Investigators unit. He is burned out from
years of working child exploitation cases and he is looking forward to starting
his new job. On the first day of training Devlin hears about his new partner
before they even meet. Connor Hutchens has a reputation for being odd and
antisocial but Devlin finds himself liking his straightforward manner and
admiring his investigative skills. Connor is the first of his kind. He was born
blind but he has been outfitted with technology that gives him advanced senses.
Devlin is sure he can find a way to get along with his new partner.
Connor is used to being
thought of as a freak. He never learned how to relate to others. He is shocked
but pleased when his new partner is not only willing to work with him but
Devlin even seems to like him. The two men have very little time to get to know
one another before they are sent out on their first case.
Ann Somerville is one of
my favorite writers. Her world-building skills are truly incredible. She has a
way of drawing the reader into her stories. The setting and the characters are
intricate and well-drawn. SOMATESTHESIA although different from her other
novels is no exception. The future
America the author describes is
fascinating and as I read I felt as if much if what is being described could
really happen someday.
Connor and Devlin are
intriguing and multifaceted characters. They are very different from one
another and yet there is a very strong connection between them. Devlin takes
the time to get to know Connor to understand what makes him tick. Connor has
never really had a friend before. Their interactions whether personal or work
related are entertaining and believable and they work very well together. The
progression of their relationship is slow but very sweet and believable. Their
first case is intense and horrifying but captivating. It kept me on the edge of
my seat. The second half of the novel goes in some unexpected but interesting
directions and gives the reader a chance to get to know the characters.
SOMATESTHESIA by Anne Somerville is a powerful futuristic thriller.