Welcome to my weekly segment, Waiting on Wednesday, where I look at upcoming books that I am planning to order and review in the next few months and which I think I will really enjoy. I run this segment in conjunction with the Can’t-Wait Wednesday meme that is currently running at Wishful Endings. Stay tuned to see reviews of these books when I get a copy of them. For my latest Waiting on Wednesday, I am going to take a look at Anyone by Charles Soule, an intriguing science fiction novel that is coming out in December 2019.
Soule is an interesting writer who is probably best known for his contributions to the world of comics. Soule has authored a huge number of comic book series for a number of different companies over the years, including for Image Comics, where he has recently wrapped up his Curse Words series, and DC Comics. However, his most significant body of comic book work has been for Marvel comics, where he has worked on series such as She-Hulk, Daredevil, various Star Wars titles and several recent major arcs in the X-Men franchise, where he killed off both Wolverine and Cyclops within two years of each other. I have quite enjoyed several of his series in the past, and have reviewed a couple of them on my blog (make sure to check out my reviews for Star Wars: Darth Vader: Dark Lord of the Sith Volumes 2 and 3, and my short review for Hunt for Wolverine in the Canberra Weekly).
Last year, however, Soule branched off away from the comic world by writing his first novel, The Oracle Year. The Oracle Year had a rather cool premise about a normal man who wakes up one morning with 108 accurate predictions of the future. While I didn’t get a chance to read this book last year, I really liked the sound of this cool and unique plot, and it was easily one of my top ten books I wish I had read in 2018. I still plan to read it at some point, but as it was a standalone novel, it does mean I can check out Anyone first.
Anyone is another great-sounding book from Soule, mainly because it also has a unique and enjoyable plot synopsis.
Charles Soule brings his signature knowledge—and wariness–of technology to his sophomore novel set in a realistic future about a brilliant female scientist who creates a technology that allows for the transfer of human consciousness between bodies, and the transformations this process wreaks upon the world.
Inside a barn in Ann Arbor, Michigan, a scientist searching for an Alzheimer’s cure throws a switch—and finds herself mysteriously transported into her husband’s body. What begins as a botched experiment will change her life—and the world—forever…
Over two decades later, all across the planet, “flash” technology allows individuals the ability to transfer their consciousness into other bodies for specified periods, paid, registered and legal. Society has been utterly transformed by the process, from travel to warfare to entertainment; “Be anyone with Anyone” the tagline of the company offering this ultimate out-of-body experience. But beyond the reach of the law and government regulators is a sordid black market called the darkshare, where desperate “vessels” anonymously rent out their bodies, no questions asked for any purpose – sex, drugs, crime… or worse.
Anyone masterfully interweaves the present-day story of the discovery and development of the flash with the gritty tale of one woman’s crusade to put an end to the darkness it has brought to the world twenty-five years after its creation. Like Blade Runner crossed with Get Out, Charles Soule’s thought-provoking work of speculative fiction takes us to a world where identity, morality, and technology collide.
I was very impressed with the above plot synopsis, especially as Anyone has a captivating and intriguing core concept. Soule has clearly got an inventive mind, and I am looking forward to seeing how he explores the body swapping aspect of the story in this book. I really like the idea of viewing the full course of the technology, from its inception to its inevitable use for crime and other unsavory actions, and I am looking forward to seeing the various impacts such a technology could have on the world. As a result, I have a strong feeling that this could be a story that I will quite enjoy, and it is definitely on my list of books to check out in the next few months.