Review Blog

Aug 13 2020

TRUEL1F3 by Jay Kristoff

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Lifelike book 3. Allen & Unwin Australia, 2020. ISBN: 9781760295707.
(Age: 15+) Recommended. Right from the start I was wondering just how Kristoff was going to bring all the threads of this brilliant trilogy together. Would the characters Evie and Lemon from the adrenaline pumping LIFEL1K3 and DEV1AT3 resolve their differences and once again become besties? Would the Yousay be devastated by nuclear war in a fight between the tech corporation Daedelus or the hive-like BioMass? Would Ezekiel be reunited with his brothers and sisters, or would Gabriel bring everyone down in his attempt to rid the world of humans? And could the fast-paced action of the first two books be maintained? I did not need to worry, Kristoff has done an outstanding job of resolving dilemmas and bringing characters back together, with adroitness, skill and wonderful imagination.
It is essential to read the three books in the trilogy in order as each book builds on the actions and character growth in the one before. TRUEL1F3 starts immediately after DEV1AT3, with Lemon Fresh captured with devastating consequences by BioMass. Meanwhile Gabriel's grip on sanity deteriorates as he accesses the means to replicate his beloved Grace and the struggle to take over the world by Daedelus and BioMass continues.
Fast paced action pushes the story on with some almost unbelievable alliances being made to save humanity. However, the moral dilemmas will make the reader pause and think. Kristoff questions what constitutes true life - can it be humans, genetic mutations with super powers like Lemon Fresh and Abe, super intelligent clones like Evie and Gabriel, or the many wonderful robots like Cricket, who have to obey the Three Laws of Robots? There are many heart-breaking choices to be made and grief to be faced as this trilogy comes to its ultimately hopeful conclusion.
Science fiction fans and readers who enjoy the thrill of a fast ride will be sure to want to read this series, and then may go on to the award-winning Illuminae Files, co-authored by Kristoff and Amie Kaufman.
Pat Pledger

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