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Foe answers the question of ‘what do you do when someone shows up at your home and tells you you’re one of the lucky few who have been choosen to go on a lengthy trip to space?’
FOE by Iain Reid
Publication Date: August 7, 2018 Genre: Sci-fi, Horror Source: NetGalley Publisher: Simon & Schuster Purchase: Amazon Length: 224 pages Story Rating: 5/5
We don’t get visitors. Not out here. We never have.
Junior and Hen are a quiet married couple. They live a comfortable, solitary life on their farm, far from the city lights, but in close quarters with each other. One day, a stranger from the city arrives with surprising news: Junior has been randomly selected to travel far away from the farm…very far away. The most unusual part? Arrangements have already been made so that when he leaves, Hen won’t have a chance to miss him at all, because she won’t be left alone—not even for a moment. Hen will have company. Familiar company.
Foe examines the nature of domestic relationships, self-determination, and what it means to be (or not to be) a person. An eerily entrancing page-turner, it churns with unease and suspense from the first words to its shocking finale.
I read my way through this book with my eyebrows furrowed and my forehead crinkled in confusion and apprehension. This will turn into a one-star review if the wrinkles become permanent!
I guess the biggest question I have after reading this book is: how the heck am I supposed to review it?
See, I read contemporary romance, only contemporary romance. Sometimes when I need to spice things up, I’ll read a romantic suspense. In a moment of temporary insanity, I picked a book with a cover that reminded me of my childhood spent on a farm. You would not believe all the trouble teenagers will get up to in a falling down shack like the one on the cover. Ahh, the nostalgia!
I was expecting a general fiction type book, that looks at the philosophical nature of love, live and personhood from the perspective of people who live on a farm. Turns out it was a Sci-fi, horror something-or-other like nothing I’ve read before.
Growing up on a farm I could completely relate to the experiences of Junior and Henrietta. From the apprehension every time a strange vehicle turns into your driveway to not seeing anyone for days. Living on a farm is a unique experience that Mr. Reid did an excellent job capturing. Perhaps too excellent.
Does anyone remember a couple years ago when Samsung said we shouldn’t talk about anything we don’t want to be overheard in front of our Smart TVs? I do because the thought creeped me out. Now in this book, there’s a secret organization listening into the conversations you have in front of your TV and using that information to choose people to send into space. Creepy, right?
This is a tough review for me to write like I said this is the first time I’ve ventured away from romance in years. While I’m sure I will make a point of reading more varied books from now on, I don’t want to say too much and end up spoiling it for anyone.
I made my way through Foe with feelings of unease, a sense of impending doom and general confusion. If this sounds like something you might enjoy, please read the book. Then come talk to me because I’m having all sorts of feelings.