The Horror Honeys: Hardcover Honey's Haunted Bookclub - The Fold

Hardcover Honey's Haunted Bookclub - The Fold

A Hardcover Honey Book of the Week review by Jocelyn

The Fold – Peter Clines

A few weeks ago our Hardcover Honey book of the week was 14, in many ways a prequel to The Fold.  In an alternate universe, your Hardcover Honey would have loads of time to sit down this week and write a lengthy and gushing review of The Fold. But as per usual, real life interferes (you heard the Royals won the World Series, right?  Did you know they cancelled school today so our local kiddos could attend the parade?!) and this one will be semi-short and more than semi-sweet.

The Fold opens with a hell of a scene, as housewife Becky waits for her husband Ben to come home from a business trip. Come home he does, but he’s… a little off. If you can call pointing a gun at your wife and asking where the hell your wife is “a little off.” We don’t see much of Ben again, as the book pivots to our central character, Mike Erikson, high-school teacher and extraordinary genius, with total recall of everything he’s ever seen, read, heard, learned, etc. He is described as tall, wiry and looking like “Severus Snape, the College Years” which has to be one of the best character descriptions of all time, right?  Mike is quickly recruited by his old friend Reggie, now a mucky-muck with DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects) who asks Mike to come to DC and hear his proposal for a summer job.

This summer job isn’t the kind most teachers take, like mowing lawns or painting houses. Oh no.  Reggie, it seems, is involved in a massive project code-named the Albuquerque Door. It seems that the scientist in charge, Dr. Arther Cross, and his team have managed to build a teleporter. Not only have they built it, they’ve tested it. Not only have they tested it on animals, but they’ve tested it on themselves and incredibly, it works. Reggie asks Mike to visit the project headquarters in San Diego and do a full on-site evaluation, bringing back detailed reports on the project. Although everybody is excited at the prospect of teleportation, there’s a cloud over the project – Reggie describes lots of sick days and a general lack of willingness to share info, etc. He wants Mike on the case.

Does his disclose the nature of Mike’s full abilities to the team? You better believe he doesn’t – and needless to say, when Mike arrives, the team, including cute blond coder Jamie, Dr. Cross himself (kept picturing the Jurassic Park bearded doctor here), and a variety of programmers, engineers, etc are a bit suspicious of his motives and loyalty – these characters were less distinct to me and I had to do some flipping back to remind myself of who was who, which is a very “redshirt” problem that seems to occur to me in any sci-fi skewing book. Not sure what the deal is there. Mike quickly discloses his talents, though they aren’t as quick to warm to him.

The team has set up two rings and Mike is astounded to see a member of the team walk through the ring at Site A and reappear in the ring at Site B, a full quarter-mile away. And although the team is incredibly proud of their achievement, something is definitely afoot at the Circle K, as their coding doesn’t make sense to Mike – and they don’t all seem able to explain how the rings work.

Author, Peter Clines
And that’s basically it – the stage is set for things to get a little weirder every few pages and… they do. Characters are confused when their office isn’t where they expected, hair color varies, and eventually everybody comes to understand what Mike pins down in a hurry – the rings aren’t passing people through Slot A into Tab B… nope, not at all – they are pulling and pushing from parallel universes. And it seems our own universe may be in danger as a result!

The creepy green cockroaches from 14 even come into play here – and this book had me hooked on almost every page. It would definitely make an incredible SyFy or AMC series, and I for one can’t wait to see it come to life. Meanwhile, go get it, so you can be one of those snobs like me who tunes in every week, sniffs and says “Well, this show is great, but the book was better”!

Hardcover Honey verdict: 4.5. out of 5 other you's for this one – definitely worth your time!