Division by Karen A. Wyle


Division

ReviewStars-4

Read from May 29 to June 05, 2014 — I own a copy, read count: 1

Synopsis: New technology, new choices . . . but who gets to choose?

Conjoined twins Gordon and Johnny have never let their condition keep them from living full and fulfilling lives. Gordon looks forward to many years of closeness and cooperation. Johnny, however, faces their future with increasing restlessness, even dread.

When the boys are in their teens, the new technologies of accelerated human cloning and brain transplants are combined into a single medical procedure — Transplant to Clone, or TTC. Someone whose body has suffered such extensive damage as to make normal life impossible may — with court approval — be cloned and then given a brain transplant into the clone body. With Gordon’s unwitting assistance, Johnny realizes that the TTC procedure provides the chance he had never dared to hope for — the chance to live in a “normal,” separate body.

But Gordon considers their conjoined life a blessing, rather than a curse. He has no intention of accepting separation — not without a fight . . . .

Division, like Wyle’s earlier novels, uses original settings and situations to explore universal themes: the complexity and intensity of family relationships, the nature of individual identity, and the far-reaching effects of the choices we make.

Bookish things: 276 pages. This is the 3rd book of Karen’s that I’ve read. Like her other books, the cover does look a little less polished than the traditionally published books. This can work for some, but I feel Twin-Bred was a better look.

Where to buy: Amazon on kindle for $3.73 or paperback for $11.04

My review:
Bookshelves: indie-review-copiesindie-authorgoodreads-review-req4-star-reviewa-lil-sexymade-me-thinksci-fi

I don’t really know what to say about Division. It left me intrigued, muddling through my own thoughts and a little excited for the possibilities the future holds for us.

It’s complex, emotional, confronting and thought-provoking. It covers the journey of Johnny and Gordon, conjoined twins that share most of a body, each controlling one half. The story takes us through some of their early years and some of their teenaged years, but the bulk of the story revolves around them blooming into adulthood and the controversial medical procedure to allow them to be divided with full bodies of their own.

I grew to like Gordon throughout the book, I think I related more strongly to his personality and that meant I subconsciously, or perhaps consciously, chose to agree with his point of view. That doesn’t mean that I didn’t see the merits in how Johnny felt, but I was more invested in Gordon. This only highlighted to me the reality that twins, conjoined or not, are individual beings and are not carbon copies of each other, even if they look like it.

Dodi was an interesting character. I didn’t feel I had a strong grasp on who she really was, all I took from her was her feelings for the twins. Which of course got more complicated as the story progressed, but I didn’t connect with her.

Ellen, now she was a great character. The levels to her emotional state and the pains she took to keep the boys protected was truly Herculean. I loved how Frank, her partner and the boys’ step father, was a contrasting character in most situations. He was the rock in most of their lives. It allowed for very real family dynamics. I liked that.

My biggest gripe would be to do with the way time progressed early in the book. I felt a little rushed through the opening scenes and the result of that was less emotional impact in the crucial scenes. The shocking scene that should have had me crying, didn’t quite get there. I did come a fair bit closer at the softer, more emotional scenes after that one, but alas, still no tears.

This book will make you think. It will make you consider your own opinions on the controversial moral topics that are covered in this book. It is a science-fiction book, but it has just enough to seem really plausible, not fantastical. I loved how realistic the technology was. I can really see something like this in our future.

The writing, is really easy to read. It’s complex enough to be suitable for adults, but also probably clear enough that young adults could read it and be fine.

A couple of things I noticed:

66% – But] her expression… (remove the [ ).
74% – hit Ellen’s check (cheek)

**Note: I was provided an electronic copy of this book in return for an honest review**

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