Published by Angry Robot on August 7th 2018
Genres: science fiction
When college student Emery Driscoll is blackmailed into being a courier for a clandestine organization, she’s cut off from the neural implant community which binds the domed city of New Worth together. Her new masters exploit her rare condition which allows her to carry encoded data in her blood, and train her to transport secrets throughout the troubled city. New Worth is on the brink of Emergence – freedom from the dome – but not everyone wants to leave. Then a data drop goes bad, and Emery is caught between factions: those who want her blood, and those who just want her dead.
I received this book in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. Pinky swear!
Implanted started off a little slow and weird. I was a tad confused by what was going on with Emery for the first chapter or so, although the backstory on what was going on did get explained later. You just get dropped into the story and it was a little jolting to begin with.
Once it picks up, it picks up. The plot is really interesting, if slightly predictable at times. I enjoyed the scienc-y/techie aspects a lot, I think they added an intriguing layer to the plot over all. The idea that you can have someone in your head all the time, whether that person is chosen or forced upon you, I thought was really cool. The technology and the environment – domed cities in a dystopian future because of course humanity has killed Mother Earth – speaks to a likely future, which I always find interesting to read about. It makes it more realistic, which can also make it a little more scary.
The side characters and relationships were also quite well done. Each relationship that Emery has is focused on in a different way, since she basically has to fake her death in order to become a courier and her new “friendships” aren’t exactly coming at a great time for her. Having to cut off her old friends and make new friends in a place she’s been blackmailed into becoming a part of was emotional to read about.
Her relationship with Rik didn’t exactly work out how I thought it would, which was good. I appreciated that it wasn’t completely straight-forward. Through their rollercoaster, I think we saw the most growth with Emery, even if some of the stuff she did regarding him annoyed me. Her lack of communication was somewhat warranted but it still got on my nerves. He was quite a softie and wasn’t at all what I was expecting when we were first introduced to him.
The best part for me was that Implanted read more like a movie than it did a book. I love books like that. I hope it gets optioned one day so I can see it on the big screen 🙂