Kirkus Reviews QR Code
THE DREAMING TREE by Matthew Mather


by Matthew Mather

Pub Date: July 9th, 2019
ISBN: 978-1-5385-8941-0
Publisher: Blackstone

In a world where people can be swapped into new bodies to keep them alive, do you ever really know who you are?

After a car accident that could have killed him, Roy Lowell-Vandeweghe wakes up to discover a fate he feels is worse than death. His wife, Penny, and his wealthy mother have teamed up with Eden Corporation to give Roy the first-ever full body transplant. The groundbreaking and potentially sinister Dr. Danesti has been paid a sum of—well, Roy doesn’t even want to know how much, to ensure that Roy survives, though maybe the doctor is keeping him alive just long enough to access his trust fund. Since Roy wasn't close to either his wife or his mother before the accident, he’s not quite sure why he’s been kept alive and isn’t satisfied by the nonanswers he’s given. His restlessness and curiosity lead him to return the phone call of Suffolk County Police Department Detective Delta Devlin, who’s tracking a serial killer in the Hamptons. Something in Roy is triggered by her quest: Could the body he’s currently tenanting be that of the man who committed the crimes? Roy, unable to rest until he knows the truth, hires a detective of his own to uncover the facts behind his medical miracle. As he learns more about Eden Corporation, Dr. Danesti, and the man behind his second chance at life, Roy’s sure of only two things: That he’s on to something dark and that he may be the very person he can’t trust.

Piling on questions about who we are and how we know it, Mather (Polar Vortex, 2019) is more successful when he concentrates on his twisted take on Frankenstein’s monster, even though this leaves his serial-killer subplot less fleshed-out.