if you could get simple outpatient surgery and be able to know just how
committed your partner was, to feel their feelings and experience the intensity
of their devotion to you? And what
if every person in your life, besides your partner, had a stake in your choice,
and felt no compunction about telling you just what you ought to be doing?
Flanigan just wants to do her job and enjoy her relationship with Trent Worth,
whose focus on advancing at Commspan is rivaled only by his commitment to send
Briddey flowers for every romantic occasion, including getting an EED—an
implant that is supposed to allow bonded couples the ability to feel each
other’s emotions. But everyone at
work, and in her incredibly Irish family, has an opinion on whether she ought
to get it, and the grapevine at Commspan seems to know what she’s doing before
she even thinks about it. Almost
like they can read her mind.
brand of cozy speculative fiction is in top form in Crosstalk. The
constant bombardment of communication, relationships, and work ramps up the
frantic pace of the novel right from the beginning, creating suspense and
obfuscating the secondary plot to allow a slow build-up that the reader can
savor. Willis’ talent for
description and scene building shine in Crosstalk,
bringing Briddey, her friends, and family to life in a way that the reader
won’t want to leave.
who enjoy speculative fiction not tethered to hard science fiction or dystopia
settings will enjoy the questions Willis asks in Crosstalk while staying anchored in the human story of the novel. Chance and chaos are prominent
motivators in this novel and it will appeal to those looking for a story that
feels real. Anyone who has enjoyed
Willis’ work in the past should definitely check out this novel, as well as
those looking to dip their toes in the science fiction and fantasy genre.