Really: 3.5 stars here… 4 stars for the first 75% of the book, and the last 25% closer to a 3.
Mike is a high school teacher with an eidetic memory, which means he has near-perfect recall of everything he’s ever seen. He can re-watch movies in his brain as though they’re playing on a screen in front of him. He has to endure the horrific things he’s seen in his life along the way, replayed when the memory is nudged by something else.
So, good or bad, it is what it is, Mike’s oddity of memory is viewed as an asset to his friend Reggie, who asks Mike (for apparently the umpteenth time) to be a part of some top secret government project. His memory and pattern recognition skills, “they” are eager, will suss out the invisible-to-others differences that can elucidate any issues with this particular government project.
Once he arrives on scene and begins to settle in, the clues to the project’s shortcomings start pouring in. Just like when I watched Sixth Sense and knew “the secret” far too early, this book betrays the truth pretty damn quick and is frequently reinforced with subtle clues that might be missed if the reader isn’t actively looking.
As the characters begin to realize the secret of The Fold, the story quickens and is enjoyable. Once we get to the point of the story’s climax, however, the integrity of the story is becoming less and less complete. My ability to stay connected to the story was really impaired, and I started taking more frequent breaks due to incredulity.
The end of the book is clearly setting us up for a potential sequel, but barring a sequel that ties up loose ends, there are many things that I didn’t feel quite satisfied with in this story. I love the premise, and many of the ways we were shown the anomalies of the project were fun and creative. There is quite a bit of explicit language, so just a heads up on that.
Otherwise, it’s a solidly enjoyable book, and I am glad I finally got around to it!