After surviving a harrowing accident with his beloved Nine, Theron has been Remade and is home to recover and begin his chosen Trade as a Healer. But Nine is gone—she isn’t coming back, and no amount of cage fighting or buzz drinks can fill the emptiness in his life.
Though he’s favored by Eridian, the Prime Maker running Freedom 1, it’s only because she hopes he can lure “free-breaker” Nine back under her control. If that hope fades, Eri will certainly let Bron, one of the Seekers who enforce her will, tear him apart, and even his fighting skills aren’t going to help against the law. Theron drinks and fights his way through life, though he’s finding some contentment as a Healer in the trauma station. When he saves a man called Catcher, he kicks off a chain of events that makes his little life impossible to sustain. The concept of Family, though alien to Theron, inspires a rebel force that’s going to take Freedom 1 and stop the dark, horrible secrets that lurk under the city. In this sequel to Remake (2014), Todd writes a cinematically drawn, well-paced story set in the South Pacific. A major arc involving richly written Pacific Islanders breaks up the relentless whiteness of Freedom 1, and there are a number of well-rounded disabled characters, including Theron. Given this sensitivity to diversity, the heteronormativity and gender binary roles repeatedly reinforced as “good” versus the gender-fluid “evil” of Freedom 1 and Eridian are sour notes that restrict this book’s audience.
Speculative fiction with a “family values" spin. (Dystopia. 12-18)