Book Review: Obscura

OBSCURA | Joe Hart
05.08.2018 | Thomas & Mercer
Rating: 5/5 stars

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In the not so distant future, an aggressive disease known as Losian’s is wreaking havoc on the world. Losian’s is a form of dementia that can strike individuals of any age and at any time. The symptoms are disturbing, often leading to violence in the affected individual, and the cause is unknown. Dr. Gillian Ryan knows all too well the impact the disease can have as she lost her husband to it and now her daughter has become a victim as well. She is on the brink of finding a cure, but funding is running out. A man from her past shows up at her door with an offer she can’t refuse. He wants to work with NASA and travel to their space station for 6 months, where the crew have fallen under the effects of something similar to Losian’s and in exchange she will receive funding for the rest of her life.

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The appearance of a new neurological disorder always made waves in the medical community, but this one was different. Losian’s they were calling it, and it wasn’t only the symptoms that were terrifying; it was the susceptible population. The disease could strike anyone.

Gillian initially struggles with leaving her daughter behind, but the idea of endless funding to find a cure to save her is too strong. Once Gillian departs on her space journey she finds out her destination isn’t quite where she expected. Determined to not lose sight of her end goal, she puts herself on a rigorous path of finding a cure. Her quest is severely hindered as she battles an addiction to pain pills and a growing sense of paranoia. As nightmares come to life around her and Gillian’s life appears to be threatened, she must work to find the answers to not only what’s happening around her, but also discover the cure to a disease that no one has been able to get close to finding. In a race against the clock, can Gillian accomplish all that she needs or will she succumb to addiction and paranoia?

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The reasoning gathered another layer of calm around her like an added blanket. But even as it did, the reality of what had just happened stripped it away. She couldn’t trust her eyes anymore.

Couldn’t trust herself.

OBSCURA is an original and intriguing science fiction thriller beautifully mixing a chilling future reality with the unbreakable human notion to fight for those that mean the most to us. Joe Hart creates a 2028 in which a disease that already affects many of the world’s population today has evolved into something that could strike anyone at anytime. In today’s society it’s hard to find someone who hasn’t been impacted by Alzheimer’s and dementia or knows someone else who was. The relatability of the effects of this disease and the notion that it could be worse, creates a connection to the main character of Gillian that allows the reader to understand her drive to find a cure for Losian’s at almost any cost. The thriller aspect of this book adds another component that keeps the reader flipping pages to find the answer. It’s clear early on in the novel that someone is trying to sabotage the NASA mission Gillian is a part of, but Hart keeps the reader constantly guessing who the mastermind might be. OBSCURA is a 5 star read perfect for thriller fans looking for a space and science fiction aspect to change things up from the typical offerings in this genre.

A special thank you to Amazon Publishing and Joe Hart for sending me a copy of OBSCURA in exchange for my honest review.

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