Author : Guy Morpuss
Title : Five Midns
Publisher : Viper Books
Publication date : September 2, 2021
| ABOUT THE BOOK |
The Earth’s growing population has finally been controlled. Lifespans are limited to eighty years, except for those who make an extreme choice: to become a commune. Five minds sharing one body, living for four hours at a time. But with a combined lifespan of nearly 150 years.
Alex, Kate, Sierra, Ben and Mike are a commune. They have already spent twenty-five years together, arguing, reconciling, alliances shifting and re-forming. They travel to a Death Park where games are played in which extra lifespan can be gambled like money. The plan is to win time to upgrade their next host body. But then Kate accepts a dangerous offer, and one of them disappears.
Someone is trying to kill off members of the commune. Is one of them responsible? Or is someone else playing a deadly game? It’s hard enough to catch a murderer. It’s almost impossible when you might be sharing a body with them…
| MY THOUGHTS |
Well, if you’re looking for a book that will make your head hurt and make you feel like your brain is leaking out of your ears … here it is! Oddly enough, I totally mean that in the best way possible.
At its core, ‘Five Minds‘ is a murder mystery. Plenty of those around, I hear you thinking, what’s so special about this one? Let me enlighten you. The killer might quite possibly be sharing a body with their victim. Yes, you read that right. And no, it’s nothing like party central in there.
Earth’s population had been growing completely out of control and the powers that be (whoever they are) came up with a solution. At the age of seventeen, Earthlings must choose how they will spend the rest of their lives. Alex, Kate, Sierra, Mike and Ben opted to live in a commune. Five minds sharing one body. The five visit a Death Park, a place where games are played in which you can win – or lose – lifespan. The five want to win time to upgrade to a new host body. But then Kate accepts a dangerous offer and things start to go very, very wrong.
Sounds complicated, doesn’t it? To be fair, I struggled at the beginning of this book. It was somewhat of a strange experience where I quite liked what I was reading, but I had no clue what was going on and it frustrated me. Part of me wanted to throw in the towel. Luckily, the other part was too stubborn and kept going because despite the synapses in my brain misfiring all over the place, this extremely addictive story had me utterly immersed. It was totally worth it and I’m so glad I kept reading because ‘Five Minds‘ is one of the most original and complex stories I’ve ever read.
What a genius way of turning the crime fiction genre completely onto its head! You’re going to need your full concentration for this one. These five minds work in cycles of four hours so there’s quite a bit of switching back and forth. Yet, it never gets confusing as all five have very distinct voices and attitudes. Could one of them, in a most complicated way, be a killer though? For the longest time, I was unable to figure it out.
This is one of those books where the less you say the better. I really don’t want to give anything away. You just need to dive in and discover everything for yourself. ‘Five Minds‘ is incredibly clever, full of intrigue and suspense. But also immensely thought-provoking. You can’t help but try and decide which option you would go for if they are presented to you at seventeen years of age. Heck, most days I can’t even decide what to have for dinner and that’s a far less impactful life decision to make. Pretty sure I wouldn’t want to be part of a commune though.
Read the book and get back to me with what you would choose. In the meantime, immerse yourself into this amazing world Guy Morpuss has created and be in awe when you realise that this is a debut! A debut that blows most of the current crime fiction books straight out of the water. I have no idea how Guy Morpuss is going to follow this one up but I sure am excited to find out.
My thanks to Viper Books for the advanced review copy! All opinions are my own. Five Minds will be published on Thursday, September 2nd.
20 Books of Summer : 20/20