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Reviewed by Katelyn Hensel for Readers' Favorite
At first, Babouc's Vision seems a bit Dickensian, a la A Christmas Carol, as our main character Harl Babouc gets a spectral visit from a phantasm/angel/spirit with a compelling mission. However, in this case, Babouc is more the reporter, tasked with weighing and measuring the good vs. evil of his own city to determine whether the fates will destroy it or spare it. The world that Glenn Searfoss has built is gritty, grimy, and a bit sweaty. It's quite violent. And you really get a shock as you dive from mind to mind with Harl and experience the good and bad this world has to offer. I did stumble at times to understand the new terms and slang of this particular city but found it charming and it helped build a picture in my head of what the characters' day-to-day lives look like. I loved that I really felt what the characters were feeling. When one wipes sweat from her brow, you feel the sting of the sunburn on her cheeks, the scrape of the cheaply woven cloth.
Honestly, the realism in Babouc's Vision might be too much for some readers. It's easy to see yourself in the characters, depending on where you are in life and especially given the dark, anxious world we live in today. April and Tom fighting to have a child and the eugenics storyline were the most interesting to me but all the characters had compelling narratives and stories and I enjoyed each one, although some left me stressed out and feeling a bit blue. Glenn Searfoss does a wonderful job of making a case for humanity - the good with the bad, as they both reflect the truth of simple existence.