Review: “Counterpart,” Hayley Stone

Pros: Interesting world-building
Cons: Still want more info on the difference in machines’ behavior, etc.
Rating: 3.5 out of 5

In Stone’s Machinations, we discovered a world in which the robots we built are amassing against us. Now, in Counterpart, we get to take in not just more machines-fighting-man, but also the terrible politics of man, which can’t be set aside even for such a goal as the saving of the human race.

Early on we find a surprise: a machine that is part mechanical, and part pieces of one of the Rhona clones. So while the rebels believe they have the real Rhona, the folks in charge start to realize that the machines found the other clones (thought destroyed) and have forced different degrees of damage, torture, and physical change upon them. Rhona can’t leave them in the hands of the machines. It might be easier, of course, if more of the folks in charge of Alaska’s rebels were willing to listen to her.

Just to complicate things all the more, the Russians want in on the alliance–or do they? It makes sense to start opening things up for them, but there’s something about their behavior that doesn’t add up.

I love that Rhona’s sense of humor and snark get worse the more scared she gets. Humor is so often used to lessen fear, and that’s depicted so well.

There’s an argument between Rhona and Camus that I found rather depressing, but largely this is action-oriented with gallows-humor snark.

There’s a lot of tension going on, and the pace is quick. It holds together well for a sci-fi thriller.

 

Free book received from publisher for this review
Estimated book publication date: October 11, 2016

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