The Companions by Katie M. Flynn
Rating: 5/5 stars
Genre: Science Fiction, Dystopian
Publisher: Gallery/Scout Press
Release Date: March 3, 2020
Quarantine sweeps across California, and when going outside is too dangerous, the living find a way to bring companions in—some almost identical to humans, others little more than cans on wheels. But within all of them is the consciousness of a dead person. The wealthy can afford to stay in the custody of their families, while the less fortunate have little say in where they go. But regardless of who they once were, all companions are property of the Metis Corporation and have no rights as people.
Sixteen-year-old Lilac is companion to another girl, one who asks her to recount her gruesome death over and over again. But when Lilac finds she can defy her commands, she runs away—in search of the woman who killed her, and the best friend she left behind.
This small act of rebellion sets off a chain of events that will forever change the way the world sees companions, and brings everyone she comes in contact with into the fold—raising questions of what it means to be human, to be alive, and most of all, what it’s like to be left behind.
**Thank you to Netgalley and Gallery/Scout Press for providing me with an eARC of this book**
This is another book where I’m gonna preface this review by saying it’s not for everyone. But that being said, I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I loved searching through the different narratives for the strings that connected them all together, and I loved the unintended consequences from Lilac searching for answers.
The changing voice between the narratives was brilliant, and I thought the motivations and priorities of the characters were done expertly. There wasn’t a single character that I didn’t know what they wanted and how they intended to get it. I loved how the world-building was so set in the background, and instead the emotions and needs of the characters were brought forward. It really made for an immersive read, and booooy oh boy was I invested in those characters.
Overall, I thought this book did a brilliant job of weaving together seemingly unrelated points of view to tell a compelling and thought-provoking story. The premise, combined with the very human story at the core worked perfectly to create a book that had me sitting there after reading (in one go I might add!) and just thinking about it and going holy shit.
Anyway, I’d recommend this to anyone who likes realistic, near-future sci fi, but tends towards weird and character-driven narratives.
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