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Reviewed by Heather Osborne for Readers' Favorite
Youth Serum by Jakes Aubrey is a very realistic science fiction novel, with intense ethical, political, and economic undertones. Doctor David Jones has discovered what he believes to be the cure to aging. Using stem cells, David creates a serum that repairs the body’s cells to literally make the recipient younger. Deciding to market his “cure” as divine intervention, David recruits a friend of his, Marc Bower, to pose as an angel, sent to Earth to spread the message of God’s graciousness through his aging cure. However, David dreams of a cure for all of society’s woes, over-population being the major one. Will David’s youth serum be what the world is looking for, or will the malicious intent of a few world leaders cause more trouble than he anticipated?
I had very mixed feelings as I was reading Youth Serum. It is definitely a controversial topic that Aubrey has chosen to explore in this work of fiction, but what was frightening was the fact that this could conceivably happen in our world. Aubrey pulls from many current political and economic situations, even some controversial ones, like sterilization for people who do not meet a certain yearly income, to help control population. This novel is not for someone wanting a simple, weekend read. Your mental capacity will be stretched. I found some parts of the manuscript a bit dry, especially where characters were debating political, social, or legal issues. All in all, the novel reminded me of Gattaca in the way human lives were discussed so impersonally.
I hope Aubrey writes a sequel, so I get to see what happens after the end scene. I was left wondering. Youth Serum is a very dense novel, with many complex issues at the heart of it. It is well worth the read for anyone who has the time to appreciate the effort Jakes Aubrey has put into researching and executing his epic novel.