Altered by Marnee Blake

Altered by Marnee BlakeAltered by Marnee Blake
Published by Entangled: Embrace on December 28th 2015
Pages: 221
Buy on Amazon

The sickness came on suddenly and violently. When it was done, waitress Blue Michaels was different in a really strange way. And the entire town of Glory was dead...except for her.
Only that's not exactly true. A handful of people made it, including U.S. Army Specialist Seth Campbell, who was caught in the wrong town at the worst time. He's fierce and protective, and way too good-looking. As much as they need a leader—as much as Blue wants to trust him—there are too many questions and not enough time for answers. Now they are hunted. But what their pursuers don't know is each of them has strange new powers. And they'll use their "gifts" to matter who stands in their way.

“I was on my way to pick up Specialist Degrassi before heading to training at Fort Bragg. I stopped in Glory, Colorado, for the night and woke up as strong as an ox and as fast as a train.” – Seth Campbell

When a small town gets poisoned because of a rogue scientist’s actions, whose who didn’t succumb to the life-altering changes of the drug find themselves irrevocably changed – with powers that they don’t understand – and targeted by a private security company desperate to erase all evidence of this screw-up. Like a cross between X-men and Heroes, the story is a fast-paced, cinematic adventure of a group of people – whose personal allegiances are yet unclear – on the run while dealing with their own superhuman abilities that seem to have ominous consequences on their physical selves.

Marnee Blake’s skilful, assured writing has a mesmeric quality to it and turns what would be a tried-and-tested plot into an engaging read that is hard to put down. All too often, we’re thrust straight into the thick of a dystopic/post-apocalyptic world as the details slowly flesh out, but this story takes a different and brave path straddling the ‘normal’ world and the world for the ‘altered’ ones, consequently maintaining that connection to the reality as we know it. It all ends abruptly on a cliffhanger without a clear resolution however, but at least it leaves me fairly convinced that Ms. Blake still has a story worth telling.