“The Echo Wife” is a brilliantly spun tale of betrayal, murder and the scientifically grey, by Sarah Gailey, Hugo Award-winning author.
Told through a first-person point of view, this story portrays the twisted inner-workings of Evelyn Caldwell, an award-winning scientist on the brink of success in creating the perfectly replicated clone.
However, the countless hours and efforts Caldwell spends on her research gradually puts a strain on her already failing marriage. It ultimately ends in betrayal when her husband abandons her for a clone he created from Caldwell’s own research.
To add insult to injury, this clone wasn’t a replica of Caldwell at all. Instead, it was a different-version, a better-version of Caldwell that matched her now-ex-husband’s personal preference.
The bitter Caldwell, in an ironic twist of fate, is forced to help that very same clone cover up the murder of — none other than — Caldwell’s cheating ex-husband.
Through this rollercoaster of events, everything that Caldwell has worked for is put on the line, and the two women gradually discover a dark secret neither of them saw coming.
Gailey’s book is a fascinating and refreshing contrast to the overused narrative of a poor innocent clone that has been forced into a role against his or her will.
Instead, it’s from the perspective of the scientist with the warped belief that clones, who resemble humans in nearly every way, are mere lumps of cells expertly crafted for a sole purpose — no-more, no-less.
Gailey so expertly portrays Caldwell’s beliefs, and utter betrayal from the man Caldwell once called her husband, that even readers can understand and even somewhat support Caldwell’s obviously unethical research.
Furthermore, Gailey crafts her story into a curious web that goes back and forth between the past and the present to draw readers in and bring them further into the twisted mind of the main character.
This slightly jarring timeline is brilliantly executed to make the story even more interesting.
Furthermore, through the main character’s past, readers come to understand the present and how such murderous misfortunes came to be.
Gailey also utilizes an ingenious foreshadowing technique that portrays significance in select scenes from both the past and present, yet stops just short of complete comprehension as to what they truly mean until the end of the book.
This baited foreshadowing technique draws readers further into the story as well as into the twisted mind that is Evelyn Caldwell.
The creative and descriptive use of language Gailey uses also helps to engage and draw the reader into the story as well as add a bit of dark or quirky humor into the mix.
I absolutely loved the book!
The morally-grey characters, masterful techniques and overall creativity Gailey utilizes create a truly sublime reading experience that has you constantly telling yourself, “Just one more chapter” before you finally decide to go to bed for the night.
Before you know it, that wonderful book is finished, and you are greeted by the soft rays of the morning sun that are peeking through your blinds.
It is then you realize the shocking truth — you haven’t slept all night!
You may have to drink a whole lot of coffee to function for the rest of the day, but you know deep down that it was worth every minute of your precious sleep.
“The Echo Wife” by Sarah Gailey is one read that really is that hard to put down.