Evoking the gritty cyberpunk of Mad Max and the fluid idealism of Sense8, Unity is a spectacular new re-envisioning of humanity. Breakout author Elly Bangs has created an expressive, philosophical, science-fiction thriller that expands upon consciousness itself.
Danae is not only herself. She is concealing a connection to a grieving collective inside of her body. But while she labours as a tech servant in the dangerous underwater enclave of Bloom City, her fractured self cannot mend. In a desperate escape, Danae and her lover Naoto hire the enigmatic ex-mercenary Alexei to guide them out of the imploding city.
But for Danae to reunify, the three new fugitives will have to flee across the otherworldly beauty of the post-apocalyptic Southwest. Meanwhile, Danae’s warlord enemy, the Duke, and a strange new foe, the Borrower, already seek them at any price.
THIS IS THE FIRST THING I remember when I begin to cohere in unity; a woman standing at a railing, peering down into the vats at the final bottom of Bloom City – and a man in a cramped air transport lavatory, watching his reflection in the scuffed plastic mirror point a wave pistol at its own head.1
(@TachyonPub, 13 April 2021, 463 pages, ebook, #ARC from the publisher and voluntarily reviewed)
This is the author’s debut. I really enjoyed it and look forward to seeing what the author comes up with next. I wasn’t sure I was going to like Unity at first; it’s so far outside my comfort zone, even for science fiction. It took a few chapters for me to really settle into the story and get to know the characters. I found the shared consciousness premise at first a little far out there and it took a while to get used to. However, I ended up really liking the book and characters. The best way to describe it is to think of Danae’s consciousness as a soul which moves between different bodies and lifelines across time and space making her ancient. Unity is original and hugely enjoyable.