Today I am reviewing the brilliant The Space Between Worlds by Micaiah Johnson, which I received courtesy of NetGalley.
A stunning science fiction debut, The Space Between Worlds is both a cross-dimensional adventure and a powerful examination of identity, privilege, and belonging.
‘My mother used to say I was born reaching, which is true. She also used to say it would get me killed, which it hasn’t. Not yet, anyway.’
Born in the dirt of the wasteland, Cara has fought her entire life just to survive. Now she has done the impossible, and landed herself a comfortable life on the lower levels of the wealthy and walled-off Wiley City. So long as she can keep her head down and avoid trouble, she’s on a sure path to citizenship and security – on this world, at least.
Of the 380 realities that have been unlocked, Cara is dead in all but 8.
Cara’s parallel selves are exceptionally good at dying – from disease, turf wars, or vendettas they couldn’t outrun – which makes Cara wary, and valuable. Because while multiverse travel is possible, no one can visit a world in which their counterpart is still alive. And no one has fewer counterparts than Cara.
But then one of her eight doppelgängers dies under mysterious circumstances, and Cara is plunged into a new world with an old secret. What she discovers will connect her past and future in ways she never could have imagined – and reveal her own role in a plot that endangers not just her earth, but the entire multiverse.
Sci Fi isn’t normally my first choice of genre, but the blurb of this book just jumped out at me and I HAD to read it. Now I am so glad I did! There’s so much to unpack with this book, from the fantastic, almost dystopian, world that’s been built up to the huge array of well rounded characters.
The wasteland area of the world gave off some serious Mad Max vibes, with the runners wreaking havoc and the emperor presiding over them all. In contrast, the city of Wiley is crazy futuristic, with the city buildings reaching high into the sky and impossible technology filling every aspect of life there.
I was seriously impressed by the diversity of the characters in this book; from nationalities and skin colours to a huge range between the poorest and the wealthiest, as well as plenty LGBT representation, including characters who came across as either gender neutral or transgender. The best part of this being that they weren’t inserted into the story as some sort of gimmick, they were characters there for other purposes, who just so happened to be LGBT.
The whole story tied together perfectly. It’s fast paced, incredibly well written, and a very addictive read. As desperate as I was to finish the book and see what happened, I really did not want it to end. I can’t wait to see more from this author, they’ve definitely set the bar high with this novel!