Friday, June 21, 2019

Book Review: 'Sleepwater Beat (Blue Helix Book 1)' by Kathrin Hutson

Sleepwater Beat by Kathrin Hutson

‘Words are more powerful than bullets’

Vermont author Kathrin Hutson is also a fiction ghostwriter, an Independent Editor through her company KLH CreateWorks, and Fiction Co-Editor for Burlington’s Mud Season Review. She has penned two series – the diptych GYENONA’S CHILDREN and the trilogy THE UNCLAIMED – and now surpasses her earlier fine work with this stunning science fiction dystopian novel, SLEEPWATER BEAT that serves as the initial volume for her new series BLUE HELIX.

Kathrin’s arresting prose style is present from page one throughout this impressive novel. She knows the importance of setting a mood for a dystopian adventure as the following demonstrates: ‘He was tired. Tired of hiding, tired of looking over his shoulder, tired of working with the underground class of society on nights like tonight. And still, he wasn’t tired enough to put and end to it. Part of him wanted them to catch him – the same part of him that always felt guilty for the crime he never committed. Karl gripped the steering wheel of his station wagon. He’d parked across the street from the gas station, planning on grabbing a bottle of liquor to open instead of the beers at his place. It was just one of those nights…The girl was one of them. It was a gut instinct, a pinprick of certainty in his life’s haze. There was so much he could teach her. He’d sworn years ago he’d never use the beat again, but maybe under his wing, he cold redeem himself…if she didn’t like him, she could just make him believe anything she wanted. He has watched her do it…’

And so we enter the mystery of Sleepwater Beat, and the authors synopsis of her plot is excellent – ‘Leo Tieffler could always make people believe anything she says – really believe. When her chest burns and the words come from her mouth, her targets’ eyes glaze over, they forget their own thoughts, and they’ll do anything she says. It’s what keeps her alive after being on the run and living on the streets for years. But after using it on her girlfriend and her dad’s drug dealer, it’s also what got her here on the streets in the first place. Then Sleepwater finds her. When Leo discovers there are others out there with similar powers, scattered across the country, she can’t say no to the underground organization. After all, what’s a little sit down with only people who may never understand her? What she doesn’t expect is to be thrust into Sleepwater’s guerrilla war, hunted by government agencies, and used as a weapon. Worse than that, she might be more valuable not for what she can do but for who she was before they found her.’

Mystery, adventure, extraordinarily unique unveiling of human powers, and a very fine LGBTQ romance all combine in Kathrin’s skilled hands to create a very powerful and satisfying novel – and one that has fine potential for a blockbuster film! This author has polished skills. Recommended.

Editor's note: This review has been published with the permission of Grady Harp. Like what you read? Subscribe to the SFRB's free daily email notice so you can be up-to-date on our latest articles. Scroll up this page to the sign-up field on your right.

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Two kings. Two princes. One queen. The true story of five aristocrats separated by time, culture, and circumstance -- all of them bound to the United States by accidents of history and left to hope for a tomorrow better than today. Prepare for a vision of the American Dream as few others have ever seen it.