The Apotheosis

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He’s a man of control, wit, and unfathomable intellect who uses his gifts to better his own cause while irreversibly destroying the lives of those who cross his path. His name is John Numen, though he has an array of other aliases by which he goes. When he was a young and impressionable child, he lost his father while participating with him in an innocent game of flag football during the celebration of his 10th birthday. It happened suddenly and unexpectedly and was the event that served as a catalyst for changing his life forever. After a trip to visit his late father’s laboratory, a fascination with science and the manipulation of variables in order to create new and previously unthought-of theories, methods, and outcomes to alter current realities and to eventually reconstruct the course of an animal or human’s life begins growing inside him. As a young adult, he will inherit 40% ownership of his father’s pharmaceutical business, which will enable him to have the means to begin his life’s work.

When that time arrives, his first victims, so-to-speak, are monkeys and bonobos. They serve as the primary subjects of his novel cloning ventures. His dog, Frick, as well as his younger counterpart, Frack, unwittingly are irrevocably altered by his scientific procedures as well. And, as his cloning success rates and outcomes increase, experimentation with humans becomes a part of his game. Though it takes time and determination on his part, sprinkled with a bit of collateral damage here and there, Numen proceeds onward toward reaching his final goal—elongating his own life eternally via scientific means. He vows to stop at nothing, regardless of the destruction, deception, greed, and sheer evil it may take to get there. However, a chain of seemingly unrelated events set off an alarm bell that alerts authorities, and a manhunt begins. The feds trace his every move, and, as they narrow in on him, it seems all but certain his finals plans will not make it to fruition. It isn’t clear, though, after their attempt to apprehend him, as well as his latest victim, whether or not his life has truly become untouchable.

The Apotheosis is a twisted tale of incredible magnitude. The commonalities of life —love, loss, passion, and fear—are ingeniously woven into this dark and, at times, insane story that explores currently untrodden territory in which a longing for immortality is at the heart. The characters are well developed and complex, crossing through each other’s lives, sometimes through happenstance alone; other times through premeditated means involving corruption, greed, and criminality. The text is action-packed from beginning to end, and just when the plot seems to be following a predictable path, it makes a divergence leaving the reader curiously eager to continue onward until the pages are no more. Author Darrell Lee masterfully leaves the reader hanging from a cliff’s edge, wondering if, indeed, John Numen’s ultimate goal will ever be fully actualized through the artificial and haunting means it is sought and, further, whether there might someday be a sequel. Additionally, this science fiction thriller leaves an impression and feeling of eeriness that lingers long after the last page. It’s mentioned in the notes about the author that his ultimate goal is to “leave a mark on the reader.” He unquestionably succeeds!


Reviewed By:

Author Darrell Lee
Star Count 5/5
Format Trade
Page Count 380 pages
Publisher Progressive Rising Phoenix Press LLC
Publish Date 18-May-2019
ISBN 9781946329800
Amazon Buy this Book
Issue August 2019
Category Science Fiction & Fantasy
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