DiSemblance Jason Tanner’s life has always been different from the ordinary citizen’s. It started when he was an infant and his parents were only teenagers. A computer science prodigy, Lloyd attended MIT but left a pariah in the eyes of the school’s dean—but a computer physics genius in the eyes of his primary investor. Then his theories and ideas created a holographic machine and their world shrunk as contact with the outside world became less and less frequent. A computer prodigy now himself, Jason is about to learn that the world never waits for you if you have the ability to change it: it will come for you. Detective Bruce Durante has been handed the case of the Comfort Killer, a serial killer so named because he appears to abduct terminally ill patients before returning their corpses to their families in refrigerated coffins. When he picks up the trail, it leads straight to the home of Lloyd Tanner. Jason has been living life through the world of Lloyd’s invention and wishing he could carry on a relationship with Boston, the beautiful girl next door. When his father is murdered and framed as the Comfort Killer, he is brought back to reality in a hurry. He is forced to destroy all of the planted evidence—and finds he is being targeted as the killer’s new fall guy. But the secrets of his father’s invention run deep and Jason, his brother Isaac,Boston, the Comfort Killer, and Detective Durante hurtle towards one another on a deadly collision course that leaves everyone’s life hanging in the balance.
I received this book through a blog tour, and as such didn’t know much about it. I hadn’t even read a blurb so had no idea what to expect. If I had to sum the book up in one word it would be: confusing. I don’t know whether it would have helped to have read a blurb to at least have an idea of the storyline, but as is I spent most of the book trying to keep everything straight.
The book is about a boy named Jason who lives with his genius father and younger brother. His father has invented a hologram machine that’s so realistic you can touch others within it, and even be hurt. He’s completely paranoid that someone is going to try to steal the technology and has therefore become completely paranoid about it. He’s passed that paranoia onto his sons so much that they basically don’t have any kind of life outside their home. Sounds interesting, right? So here’s where the confusion comes in.
A detective named Bruce is investigating murders by someone they’ve dubbed “the comfort killer” because he only kills terminally ill people, and then returns their bodies to their families in a coffin with a large amount of money. Okay, also interesting, but sounds like a completely different storyline, right?
No, they’re both connected, and as they begin to intersect, that’s where the major confusion comes in. As the reader, you’re never sure what’s real and what’s not. I don’t have a problem with that and in fact think it can be a truly mesmerizing way to get a story across—if it’s done right. In this case it just always felt off-balance and I had a hard time even keeping some of the characters straight most of the time, and a secondary storyline involving the detective and his wife felt thrown in and was so sparse that I honestly didn’t care about it.
That being said, it was still an interesting story. I did care about Jason and girl-across-the-street Boston. I cared about him being kept safe and finding the answers he needed. There were some plot holes and some repetitive things happening, but overall I think it’s a read that you can enjoy if you’re willing to suspend your disbelief and just roll with the story. There’s enough of Jason, Boston, and Bruce’s investigation to keep the reader invested in the story, and to want to know how it’s all going to end. So I’d give it 3.5 stars out of 5 because it’s a good enough story to be worth reading.
Author Shanae Branham I am a professional writer with a bachelor’s degree in creative writing and a minor in grammar. I have also attended several years of classes and workshops in screenplay writing at the Los Angeles Screenplay writer’s Expo. I love suspense thrillers and am a master at plot and character development. I enjoy stories with happy endings. I promise all my readers that when they put one of my books down or walk away from one of my movies, they will be enthused with excitement and joy. This does not mean there will not be some sad parts, because you have to feel the bitter in order to understand the sweet. In fact, I have struggled with Dyslexia my whole life, so you can imagine how overjoyed I was when DiSemblance won a Silver metal in the fantasy/science fiction category at the eLit awards in 2012.
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