*NEW RELEASE SPECIAL* Review of Body Tourists by Jane Rogers #Brainfluffbookreview #BodyTouristsbookreview #SciFiMonth2019


I’ve only ever heard good things about this author, so was delighted when I saw this arc available on Netgalley – and even more delighted to be approved to read it. I am also linking this one to @SciFiMonth2019.

BLURB: In this version of London, there is a small, private clinic. Behind its layers of security, procedures are taking place on poor, robust teenagers from northern Estates in exchange for thousands of pounds – procedures that will bring the wealthy dead back to life in these young supple bodies for fourteen days. It’s an opportunity for wrongs to be righted, for fathers to meet grandsons, for scientists to see their work completed. Old wine in new bottles. But at what cost?

This story is told in multiple viewpoints, as we are introduced to a number of characters who become involved in this experiment. Inevitably, there are some who stick in the mind more than others. Paula is stranded on one of the thousand estates where the working class forced into unemployment as their jobs are now automated, are housed. Many retreat into VR worlds as an escape, while existing on sub-standard food, sub-standard education and sub-standard opportunities. She uses the money she gets for renting out her body to open a dance studio for the youngsters who don’t want to live in a virtual world and inevitably, it is her students – unusually fit and healthy – who are targeted for Luke’s experimental process. I loved her struggles, both practically and ethically, to live the life she wants against a background of poverty and deprivation.

I also enjoyed the storyline of Elsa and Lindy, another memorable subplot that particularly chimed with me, as I’m also a teacher. I felt their story was poignantly portrayed and the passages when they were able to fully express their love for one another were beautiful. There is also the tale of Richard K, successful pop musician who made it after his dad died and now he’s well into his middle age, would like to have the chance to reconnect with his father again.

Rogers could so easily have made this a far more polemic read, but I liked the fact that this wasn’t a completely dark tale of the haves preying on the have-nots – until it suddenly was… That ending packed a real punch and was all the more devastating because it seemed all too plausible – although thankfully, I think the actual science behind this premise is a very long way down the line.

This very readable story is both engrossing and thought provoking – I always love it when science fiction does that. And while the overall premise isn’t a particularly original one, I thoroughly enjoyed Rogers’ treatment. Highly recommended for readers who might like to sample a strong science fiction read, but are nervous of the techie bits.

The ebook arc copy of Body Tourists was provided by the publisher through NetGalley in return for an honest opinion of the book

12 responses »

  1. The concept of this kind of reminds me of something Scalzi wrote, the name of which escapes me for the moment. This definitely had the potential for a lot of darkness but I’m glad the author didn’t go in that direction.
    Lynn 😀

    • You might be thinking of Head On, but that’s an artificial body for those afflicted with a modern plague. It was an awesome series – he’s written two so far, though I’d love it if he’d write more:).
      This one is quite different – and while it is darker, it’s not completely bleak. There are some lovely passages in here… and some of it is just plain farcical fun.

  2. Pingback: #SciFiMonth Mission Status: week three

  3. Pingback: Book Reviews: Do Not Feed the Bear | Body Tourists | Snowglobe | All the Water in the World | RatherTooFondofBooks

  4. I couldn’t help thinking: why all the great premises have to be dark ones? I’m sure it’s not true, but I was really intrigued by the premise. At the same time, while I was reading your review, I had a feeling that it isn’t one of those feel-good books that end well… It seems that I was right. (I still half-want to read it, though.)

    • Yes… it certainly isn’t all fun and giggles. And if it had turned up this year or last on the NG dashboard, I would have left it there. I’m being very, very fussy about what I’m reading at the moment…

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