The Singularity Witness
For a debut, Dan Grant’s The Singularity Witness is probably one of the most ambitious thrillers written. Thrillers, whether crime or political, succeed when they touch on cultural anxiety. In Grant’s case, readers are placed at the intersection of corporate greed, government machinations, and the ethics surrounding new biological breakthroughs. A genius Ivy League researcher, Thomas Parker, who has eschewed the traditional coziness between bio-tech companies and the academy, finds himself paired with hard-edged FBI agent Kate Morgan, tracking down the kidnapping of a US senator and stumbling upon a sinister corporate plot. That scheme looks to harness Parker’s radical technology for ignoble profit and personal gain. The Singularity Witness is a rare thriller, one based in bio-ethics, a field the public only has a nascent understanding of. However, nearly every reader has reservations as well as great hopes when it comes to the advancements being made in biomedical research, making the novel timely and just different enough from the mass of thrillers to stand out. As a first-time author, Grant writes with a surprising confidence and patience, allowing him to draw the reader in with a compelling puzzle of a plot as he fleshes out his heroes and villains with skill.
Drawing on his own personal experience, like so many other authors of thrillers do, Grant is able to paint realistic scenes as he pushes his narrative to both thought-provoking and extreme ends. However, he knows how to guide readers around jargon and tech speak so they feel the impact of what is happening on the page. This, tied with his astute ability to meld present day capabilities with future possibilities, gives the novel not just its urgency and timeliness but also a touch of science fiction or, rather, hard science. While perhaps not the most accurate portrayal of academia, Grant is able to paint a portrait of the biotech and corporate engineering worlds that is as chilling as it is accurate.
Readers who love literature tasking them with piecing together clues to anticipate conclusions will be delightfully surprised by Grant’s book. After finishing the novel, readers will certainly be hungry for more, which Grant plans to deliver by offering a separate book series centered on his two protagonists (Thomas Parker and Kate Morgan) introduced here. It takes a skilled writer of popular fiction to introduce unique medical and technical concepts alongside ethical questions and boundaries while maintaining a peak level of action and suspense without losing believability. With The Singularity Witness, Dan Grant succeeds in delivering a compelling and pleasing thriller just enough outside of the box to feel fresh and new.
|Page Count||440 pages|
|Publisher||MindScape Press, Inc.|
|Bookshop.org||Buy this Book|
|Category||Mystery, Crime & Thriller|