Eve Smith: Off Target

Today I’m delighted to be taking part in the blog tour for Off Target. My review is written with thanks to Anne Cater for inviting me on the tour.

Blurb:

A longed-for baby
An unthinkable decision
A deadly mistake

In an all-too-possible near future, when genetic engineering has become the norm for humans, not just crops, parents are prepared to take incalculable risks to ensure that their babies are perfect … altering genes that may cause illness, and more…

Susan has been trying for a baby for years, and when an impulsive one-night stand makes her dream come true, she’ll do anything to keep her daughter and ensure her husband doesn’t find out … including the unthinkable. She believes her secret is safe. For now.

But as governments embark on a perilous genetic arms race and children around the globe start experiencing a host of distressing symptoms – even taking their own lives – something truly horrendous is unleashed. Because those children have only one thing in common, and people are starting to ask questions…

Bestselling author of The Waiting Rooms, Eve Smith returns with an authentic, startlingly thought-provoking, disturbing blockbuster of a thriller that provides a chilling glimpse of a future that’s just one modification away.

Review:

I could write an essay on how creepy the cover for Off Target is and how brilliantly it captures the essence of the novel without giving too much away, but I’m not sure that counts as a review so let’s take a look inside the cover…

Never in a million years did I think I would be giving a book that is largely scientific in its theme five stars on Goodreads but Off Target totally shattered my expectations. At its core is the issue of genetic engineering and the author presents some interesting arguments on both sides that certainly give the reader a lot to think about. It’s made more disturbing by the fact that it’s not set too far in the future and so it feels completely plausible. I think this is why I felt more connected to it than I usually would with science fiction – it didn’t feel entirely out of reach and I felt able to connect to it on many levels. 

But Off Target is not just a scientific story. There are also elements of other genres and an emotional side to the novel that really tugged at my heart. There are parts that made me angry, moments when I had a tear in my eye and all the tension and twists that would usually send me rushing to the shelf. I love that Smith has combined all these things so that the novel feels like a complete story. 

The chapters are written mostly in first person from the perspectives of Susan and Zurel. This technique allows the reader to see the human side of such a complex debate and helps us to see why they made the decisions they did. That’s not to say I found the characters likeable; I didn’t (except Zurel. I wanted to hug Zarel from her first appearance) but they are incredibly well developed and the author has obviously spent a long time getting to know them so she can present them to us in such a three dimensional way. 

I cannot wait to see what Smith does next! 

Off Target is available from Amazon.

You can follow the rest of the blog tour here:

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