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Reviewed by Asher Syed for Readers' Favorite
All Hope of Becoming Human by Lonnie Busch is a science fiction thriller that revolves around multiple characters who encounter dangerous unearthly occurrences following an earthquake. On a site exploration. archaeologist Rebecca Duccati uncovers a mysterious metallic object that attracts the attention of Homeland Security. In different vignettes around the world, seemingly unconnected incidents of violent murders by unknown creatures are occurring, one of which protagonist Special Agent Zach Demzey sees himself while investigating a case. When Duccati's and Demzey's paths cross, a larger narrative begins to reveal the nature of these mysterious creatures, the implications of genetic mutations, and the potential for a new civilization to emerge from the failures of the current world...due to and at the expense of humanity.
All Hope of Becoming Human is a supremely fast-moving and wholly engrossing novel that provides a mix of authentic, real-world issues and an unfolding science fiction mystery. I loved the point of view hops. The way Lonnie Busch so brilliantly weaves together disparate events that ultimately converge into a single storyline is reminiscent of the very intentional use of iterations as a formatting style in Michael Crichton's Jurassic Park, even as Busch skillfully follows characters up until the very moment of their death. The result is an exceptionally well-plotted book that, frankly, moves forward so seamlessly that I found it difficult to hit pause. The disorientation of Duccati and her almost unnatural obsession with the metallic object kind of made her feel like a red herring. She isn't, but she's good enough so that she could be. Demzey is the agent we all want on every case, ever, but he is fully fleshed and lifelike. The last third of the book is a giant 'whoosh' of excitement, although that could have just been my own panting. Overall, this is a gem of a novel and I would give it a whole bucket full of stars if I could.