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@instafreebie Read of the Month

The Sigma Surrogate by J T Lawrence

Genre: Dystopian Cyberpunk
Audience: Anyone into either genre
Reader Rating: 4 STARS

This book is the prequel to the When Tomorrow Calls series. It is my very first Cyberpunk read and I was not disappointed. The Johannesburg setting immediately sucked me in as did the very vibrant central character of Keke, a biopunk journalist. Along with Keke are several supporting characters which are as colourful as our protagonist.

The story involves a mysterious bombing at a surrogate facility. Naturally, Keke, being who she is feels the need to investigate fully. During the course of her investigation Keke meets a badly injured young surrogate (victim of the bombing) who she is drawn to. It furthers her resolve to find those responsible. There are elements of The Handmaid’s Tale lurking in artificial lawned environs and very sexy peripheral characters on the outskirts too.

The dialogue is unmistakeably South African and had me chuckling as many of Keke and her friend’s expressions evoked strong memories of South African dark humour. I did however wonder if this would limit the audience range a little. Some of the technical terminology also left me a bit bamboozled but didn’t pull me away from the main thrust of the story.

The futuristic setting is well described as are the technological advancements. I particularly liked the idea of Keke’s tattoo which warned her when her insulin levels were low. More specific settings within sections are well realised and make the reader feel they’re with Keke as she explores her environment.

My favourite sections were descriptions of Keke on her motorbike, her brazen infiltration of the surrogate centre and the sex scene. The sex scene oozed sensuality and I was totally jealous of J T’s ability to write a scene like this. I took loads of notes.

After this read, understandably, I’ve already got myself another one of J T’s offerings to add to my Kindle holiday reads.

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