Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Kindle Spotlight -- The Soul Schematic

Today I'm reviewing Lisa Degerstrom's The Soul Schematic. The story seems to take place in America during the late 19th century, although the characters have cell phones and other modern devices. The protagonist is a young woman of high society named Clovis Palmer who possesses a brilliant mind. She secretly builds a sophisticated robot in the form of a man. This is very risky because 1.) Women are forbidden from being inventors in her close-minded society and 2.) Creating artificial life in the image of man is a capital offense. During a party hosted by her father and stepmother, the mechanical man is awakened and freed by unknown persons. He/It finds himself in a nearby city where he is attacked by a pimp and has to kill the violent man in self-defense. Clovis is soon faced with the knowledge that something she created has taken human life, and the person she looks up to is charged with the crime. She sets out to recover her creation and clear the man's good name, but along the way she has to deal with the dreaded Lazure, AKA the Dark Contable, a man hellbent on upholding his own idea of justice.

The story is interesting but unfortunately suffers from a painful lack of editing. Punctuation errors abound, characters are confused with one another, and things happen with absolutely no transition. This kind of shoddy work is inexcusable. It's a shame, really, because the story reels you in and the characters are intriguing (and few of them are what they appear to be). This could have been a really good book; Degerstrom definitely has the potential to be a stellar author if she only puts in the effort to polish her work.

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