I have several Mira Grant novels on my To Read list and when I saw this one on Netgalley, I couldn’t resist. Can you enjoy reading a book about genetically engineered tapeworms? Well, I did but, boy, was it disturbing at times. Tapeworms have always grossed me out and the thought of intentionally having one is beyond me.
Anyway, on to the story – From Goodreads “A decade in the future, humanity thrives in the absence of sickness and disease. We owe our good health to a humble parasite – a genetically engineered tapeworm developed by the pioneering SymboGen Corporation. When implanted, the Intestinal Bodyguard worm protects us from illness, boosts our immune system – even secretes designer drugs. It’s been successful beyond the scientists’ wildest dreams. Now, years on, almost every human being has a SymboGen tapeworm living within them. But these parasites are getting restless. They want their own lives . . . and will do anything to get them.”
Sally, our protagonist, had a horrible car accident a few years ago. She was basically brain dead and her family was moments away from pulling the plug when she suddenly sat up, awake. Her memory was gone so she had to re-learn everything from basic language skills to human interaction. Because her tapeworm saved her life, she has to be constantly vigilant in taking care of it or she could die. SymboGen takes care of everything and she has to hand over a lot of her life to them.
I don’t want to give anything away but I will say there are a few plot twists. For the most part, I had them figured out pretty early on but it was still riveting to read. Sally is quite annoying in spots but is still a strong female lead. The supporting cast is well written. One thing I loved is that it is hard to tell who will end up being a “good guy” or “bad guy” in the future.
4/5 stars for a really great start to the Parasitology series. Thank you to the publisher for providing an ARC through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
In honor of Freaky Friday, I will leave you with this: