Published: 7 November 2017
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Category: Young Adult/Science Fiction/Dystopian
Catarina Agatta is a hacker. She can cripple mainframes and crash through firewalls, but that’s not what makes her special. In Cat’s world, people are implanted with technology to recode their DNA, allowing them to change their bodies in any way they want. And Cat happens to be a gene-hacking genius.
That’s no surprise, since Cat’s father is Dr. Lachlan Agatta, a legendary geneticist who may be the last hope for defeating a plague that has brought humanity to the brink of extinction. But during the outbreak, Lachlan was kidnapped by a shadowy organization called Cartaxus, leaving Cat to survive the last two years on her own.
When a Cartaxus soldier, Cole, arrives with news that her father has been killed, Cat’s instincts tell her it’s just another Cartaxus lie. But Cole also brings a message: before Lachlan died, he managed to create a vaccine, and Cole needs Cat’s help to release it and save the human race.
Now Cat must decide who she can trust: The soldier with secrets of his own? The father who made her promise to hide from Cartaxus at all costs? In a world where nature itself can be rewritten, how much can she even trust herself?
Emily Suvada’s new novel, This Mortal Coil, sounds like a very exciting science fiction novel. When I read the synopsis, it brought to mind some of my favorite sci-fi films and I wondered how Suvada would make this plot work. DNA fixing sounds like something right out of Gattaca, after all. Scary stuff!
In the excitement of the Sunday Street Team Blog Tour, I have the privilege of hosting Emily Suvada today for a guest post about the futuristic books and movies that are her personal favorites.
Emily Suvada: Favorite futuristic books/movies
Three of my favorite futuristic books:
Neuromancer by William Gibson
This is probably my favorite book, although it’s hard for me to choose between Neuromancer, Jurassic Park, and Twilight for my true favorite. This book was the beginning of the cyberpunk movement and genre, and has had a huge effect on my work. In Neuromancer, a hacker called Case steals from his employers, who damage his nervous system in revenge. This stops Case from being able to access the ‘Matrix’ – a virtual cyberspace. Case is recruited for a shady job that just might offer him a way back into cyberspace – if it doesn’t kill him first. The prose in this book, and the raw, organic world that Gibson creates are absolutely stunning. Reading this book changed my life. It’s an experience I’ll never forget.
Uglies by Scott Westerfeld
This is one of my absolute favorite YA series. I was so excited when my publisher, Simon Pulse, made an offer on my book – because they also published this incredible series! In Uglies, teens are given surgery when they come of age to turn them into “Pretties”. Tally, our main character, longs to be a Pretty, but also harbors suspicions about Pretty society and whether or not the government in her world has people’s best interests at heart. The future technology in this book is great, and it’s a really cinematic work. It’s a travesty that this hasn’t been adapted for screen – it would be an incredible TV series or film.
EXO by Fonda Lee
This book blew my mind, in the best possible way. It’s set in a future where crab-like aliens with exoskeletons have colonized Earth after a long and bloody battle. Only, the aliens don’t want to enslave or kill humans – they simply see Earth as a strategic outpost in their own war. Donovan is an Exo, one of the few humans who has been fitted with an alien-designed exoskeleton which enhances his strength and speed, and which makes him near-invulnerable to attacks. This book is absolutely packed full of complex moral questions – is it bad to be under alien control? What if the aliens’ enemies are worse? Are the rebel human groups right to keep fighting? There are no easy answers in this book, and it’s a fantastic read for it.
Three of my favorite futuristic movies:
The Fifth Element
This movie is incredible. It doesn’t take itself too seriously, which I love, but it still manages to create deep emotional moments! Korben Dallas is a hovercab driver who finds himself forced to join a desperate plan to save the world after Leeloo falls into his cab. The characters are amazing, the visuals are stunning, and it even has an amazing song! Leeloo is one of my all-time favorite kickass heroines. Her fighting scenes in this movie are top-notch. I love the clothes and dialogue, the ridiculousness… it’s just brilliant.
Hahaha, this movie is so dated now but I still love it so, so much. A young hacker, Dade, who was banned from using computers for seven years after a massive hack he did as a child, moves to a new school and begins using computers again, and finds himself in bigger trouble than ever before. This movie was so influential for me, and the characters are fantastic. I still watch it every couple of years. It’s a great mix of pop culture and cyberpunk, with a high-school setting in a big city. It’s glorious.
Still such an incredible movie, and so influential. A hacker, Neo, makes contact with a secretive group who show him that his reality is a lie – he’s living in a computer simulation, the Matrix. The idea behind this film, the visuals, the incredible fight scenes, the aesthetic, the kickass characters – were revolutionary, and in my opinion this film really stands the test of time almost twenty years later. The music is great, and Trinity is one of my favorite characters. This trilogy had a huge influence on my work and ideas.
So many of the the books and movies on this list were important to me because they reveled in nerd culture at a time when it wasn’t that cool to be a nerd. These stories created worlds where being smart, skilled, and dedicated to learning was a superpower. I’ve always been a huge nerd, and I’ve created a similar world in This Mortal Coil – where learning how to code DNA can make you a hero. I find this idea exciting, because anyone can learn to code, and anyone with enough interest can get really good at it – so in the world of my book, anyone can become a kickass hero, too 😀
Thanks so much to Emily for writing this guest post for The Hermit Librarian today! It’s so much fun to talk about nerdy stuff, especially movies. The Matrix is one of my favorites as well, though I have to be honest and say I don’t think I’ve ever seen The Fifth Element. Maybe I’ll fix this after reading This Mortal Coil. 😉
Stay tuned now for some info about Emily, a giveaway, and more stops on the Sunday Street Team Blog Tour for this title.
About the Author
Emily Suvada was born and raised in Australia, where she went on to study mathematics and astrophysics. She previously worked as a data scientist, and still spends hours writing algorithms to perform tasks which would only take minutes to complete on her own. When not writing, she can be found hiking, cycling, and conducting chemistry experiments in her kitchen. She currently lives in Portland, OR, with her husband.
Blog Tour Schedule
11/5 Tour Stops
Interview – Megan Manzano
Review – Books N Calm
Review – Dani Reviews Things
Interview – Fly Leaf Chronicles
Unique Post – Book Stacks Amber
11/12 Tour Stops
Guest Post – Mikayla’s Bookshelf
Interview –Reading is Dreaming with Eyes Wide Open
Review – Sarcasm and Lemons
Unique Post – Downright Dystopian
Review – Here’s To Happy Endings
11/19 Tour Stops
Interview – Books, Boys, and Blogs
Review – Emily Reads Everything
Guest Post – The Book Corps
Unique Post – Life of a Literary Nerd
Review – Bay in Wonderland
11/26 Tour Stops
Review – A Gingerly Review
Review – Pretty Deadly Blog
Interview – Library of a Book Witch
Guest Post – The Hermit Librarian