This Mortal Coil

This Mortal Coil
This Mortal Coil Book One
Written by Emily Suvada
Science Fiction, Dystopian
448 Pages
Thank you to Penguin Teen Australia
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★★★★★
When a lone soldier, Cole, arrives with news of Lachlan Agatta's death, all hope seems lost for Catarina. Her father was the world's leading geneticist, and humanity's best hope of beating a devastating virus.

Then, hidden beneath Cole's genehacked enhancements she finds a message of hope.

Lachlan created a vaccine.

Only she can find and decrypt it, if she can unravel the clues he left for her. The closer she gets, the more she finds herself at risk from Cartaxus, a shadowy organization with a stranglehold on the world's genetic tech. But it's too late to turn back.

There are three billion lives at stake, two people who can save them, and one final secret that Cat must unlock. A secret that will change everything.
The earth is a desolate wasteland, a virus decimating humanity, survivors abandoned to starvation. Catarina Agatta is a survivor. Catarina is the seventeen year old daughter of the renowned geneticist Lachlan Agatta, a magnate and former Cartaxus programmer and genetic engineer, now recaptured along with his assistant to manufacture an antidote.

Catarina has survived within the isolated Black Hills, a resourceful young woman evading Cartaxus capture. At birth, humans are implanted with advanced technology to allow gene manipulation, applications are downloaded to enhance humans physically, cognitively and aesthetically. Diagnosed with Hypergenesis, Catarina remains genetically unenhanced, relying upon her intellect and perception to survive. As the pandemic escalates, thousands shelter in underground communities, sacrificing their freedom to Cartaxus.

Although an agent of Cartaxus and a young man with enhanced abilities, disciplined in warfare, Lieutenant Cole Franklin has been assigned to protect Catarina after an explosion at the Cartaxus laboratory claimed her father and the vaccine. Humanity will depend on Catarina.

The essence of This Mortal Coil is genetic manipulation and biotechnology, developed by Lachlan Agatta and administered to infants as nanotechnology. It allows programmers to create applications that download directly into the body, collaborating with our human genetics. Cartaxus monopolises the genetic applications, abandoning and denying survivors essential health enhancements. The airborne virus infects healthy humans, accelerating before causalities detonate, bodies vaporising into a contagious, airborne cloud. Survivors can inoculate themselves by consuming the flesh of those infected, ensuring their immediate survival but Catarina is determined to preserve her humanity. The scientific elements are surprisingly uncomplicated and woven throughout the narration, rather than overhwleming expositions.

Catarina's relationship with her father Lachlan is portrayed as distant and indifferent, a young woman pursuing approval. Catarina begins a tentative relationship with Lachlan's assistant, a conventional young man who also appeared manipulative and egotistical. Their relationship seemed little more than based on convenience and no genuine connection between the two other than her father.

Catarina reluctantly establishes a companionship with Cole and I enjoyed their interactions. The attraction between the two is undeniable but Cole is preoccupied with the former Cartaxus programmer, the mysterious Jun Bei. Catarina is physically malnourished, she refuses to allow Cole to become her saviour and appreciated that although intellectually superior, is never pretentious or conceited.

Oh and those plot twists. Surprised eyebrows for days.

This Mortal Coil is an intelligent, captivating and atmospheric science fiction dystopian. Absolutely phenomenal.

24 comments

  1. Yasssss I've had a need for another good dystopian for so long. This might just fill my needs!

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    1. It's absolutely incredible, I can't wait to see what you think of it!

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  2. This sounds amazing. Completely up my alley too. Going to add this to GR right now! Thanks!
    Rebecca @ The Portsmouth Review
    Follow me on Bloglovin'

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    1. I love science fiction fusion and it's absolutely captivating Rebecca. I hope you enjoy it too!

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  3. Man, I have heard sooo many awesome things about This Mortal Coil. I need to purchase a copy ASAP.

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    1. You certainly do Sarah, it's brilliant and intelligent young adult. Knocked my socks off.

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  4. OMG I'M SO GLAD YOU LOVE TMC!!!!! ❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤ I can't wait for the sequel!
    Haniya
    booknauthors.blogspot.com

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    1. Me either Haniya. I knew I'd love it after reading your review, it definitely didn't disappoint.

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  5. this sounds like such an interesting premise. I have this one and I am looking forward to reading it and seeing how i would feel about it :D

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    1. Ooh, I can't wait to see what you think of it Lily. It was phenomenal.

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  6. I am starting to hear more and more good things about this book. I have a copy, but have not read it yet, but I think it may be worth a look. I keep hearing about these twists, and I want to know more. Great review.

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    1. It takes quite a bit to surprise me usually bit it was incredible Sam, it's one of my favourite reads of the year. Looking forward to seeing your thoughts.

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  7. Haven't read dystopia like forever. And it sounds like a good first book in a series. I'll definitely check this one out. Awesome review!

    xx
    Vanessa @ Blushing Geek

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    1. Same Vanessa, there's not too many around anymore and it's my favourite genre too. I can't even begin to describe how incredible it is, definitely grab a copy!

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  8. I was sort of on the fence about reading this one but several of my blogger friends have loved it.

    For What It's Worth

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    1. Definitely worth the read Karen, I think you'll love this one too. Would love to see what you think of it.

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  9. Surprised eyebrow for days huh? I am impressed -- and I am not the biggest fans of these sorts of dystopian stories, I must admit. Gene manipulation, especially, is becoming a bigger topic these days.

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    1. It's controversial especially within religious groups I feel Verushka. I'm hoping the next instalment explores themes of morality and science verses religion. It's such an epic read, absolutely loved it.

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  10. Is it weird I'm intrigued by the 'science' in this one? Because I totally am. I haven't read a dystopia in a long, long time, but I might just...need to read this one. Hmm.

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    1. The scientific elements was what originally intrigued me too, a future of gene manipulation and hacking. It's so incredibly detailed but without overwhelming readers. I think this could be the perfect read for intelligent, curious minds like yours.

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  11. Yayy I'm glad you enjoyed this one! I had the terrible problem of having read too many books like this earlier so like...I guessed literally every single plot twist PAGES in advance.😂I hate the "I've read too much" but woah it's a problem sometimes.😂

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  12. You know, I kept seeing this cover about and thought I wouldn't like the book but now I've read your review I'm making grabby hands at my computer screen. This sounds awesome! I love when a book keeps surprising you with the plot twists as well. I wasn't going to try and read this one but I am definitely adding to my growing TBR and I'm making sure it's high up there as well. Great review.

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  13. Reading reviews about good YA sci-fi makes me feel so happy. I would love to read this one!

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  14. I am so in love with this book and I'm glad it was a pleasant hidden gem! I can't believe I haven't heard more raves about it, how well was the world built and the science stuff was explained really well too. Lovely review Kelly!

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