Rated Reads

Emergence

by C. Michelle Jefferies

Rated: Moderate

Antony Danic is an assassin who kills only the “bad guys,” people who “pose a threat” to others, as he assures his wife. When his handler gives him an assignment, the trained soldier in him goes out and gets it done. But for some reason, he starts feeling odd about a couple of his hits; they just don’t seem to be deserving of death. And then when a stranger finds him on vacation and delivers a message from his employers telling him to step up his game or else, Antony finds himself ever more unnerved about what he’s doing. As he starts digging a little to learn about the people he’s killed and the other odd jobs his handler is asking him to do, it becomes clear there is something bigger going on with the corporation he works for.

The question is, can Antony manage to get out of a job that is essentially “until death do you part” — and keep his family safe?

Emergence is a serviceable thriller with some undertones of mystery: Antony is an atheist and his wife belongs to a religion led by elders who seem to know more about what’s in Antony’s mind (and perhaps future) than he can explain away. The story seems to be leading in the direction of telling readers more about what Antony’s role is to be in this faith group; I just can’t tell exactly what kind of genre the next books are going to be. I don’t know if they’re meant to be kind of supernatural/mystic or mostly set in the “real world,” even as they clearly will still be thrillers about big corporations and conspiracies.

This book is set about 70 years in the future, so technology is a bit different, but not as much so as I might expect for that many years (considering how rapidly tech has changed even in the past 30 years). At the same time, there are new religions in existence that I don’t think would evolve in a mere 70 years.

Overall, I’m not quite sure what to expect from future books in terms of not just story but direction and genre; I really still don’t know yet why this book is titled Emergence. But the book is satisfying as an action story and is fairly well written.

Rated: Moderate. There is no language or sex, but there is pervasive, fairly detailed violence.

— Reviewed by Cathy Carmode Lim

Cathy Carmode Lim has been reviewing books for newspapers for about 20 years, two of which she was a book page editor. She founded Rated Reads in January 2008.

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  • Emergence
  • by C. Michelle Jefferies
  • Rated: Moderate
  • Genre: Fiction
  • Reviewer: