Dense and complex… An exquisitely plotted SF tale.
In his fourth installment in the Immortality Wars series, Carreiro ably weaves an intricate, immersive and often exciting tale within a grim futuristic setting. It is 2562, Old Earth Time. When Pall Warren, a sergeant in an elite company of warriors from medieval times, wakes up in an unfamiliar place, he realizes he has traveled 540 years into the future in a different dimension. With his special spiritual powers that can unlock the key to immortality, Pall soon becomes the target of the likes of Gordon Yarrow, the head at the Laboratory of the Hesperides, and Gedeon Karik, the mob boss of Azdhaya Cartel, in their quest for wealth and power. He must fight a hell of a war far beyond anything he has ever before seen or imagined. Carreiro combines elements of fantasy, hard SF, dystopian, and conspiracy thriller against an intriguing backdrop, and his evocative worldbuilding is created with precision and vivid details. Though the book’s premise might suggest an action-filled, thrilling SF plot, the story unfolds slowly. Carreiro skillfully explores the Christian concepts of death, resurrection, and eternal life, giving weight and depth to the storyline. His exploration of the murky relationship between medical and genetic advancements and ethics (especially, the moral implications of Pall ending up as a laboratory specimen for the rich and the powerful), particularly feels timely and relevant. The novel’s theological inspiration maintains a strong presence throughout the narrative; a number of Hindi and Sanskrit words appear frequently. The cast is racially diverse: Professor Bhattacharya is coded as a person of North-Indian (Hindu Brahmin) descent. Among the secondary cast, there are characters who are Whites, First Nations, French, Europeans, and Asian. The cold and gritty authoritarian world of the Womerah where hyperreality is at the forefront of life, hums with frostiness, evoking a sense of grim desolation. And though this is the fourth installment in the series, Carriero drops in enough backstory, enabling the first-time readers to get right onboard with Pall’s journey. The descriptions of futuristic technology on the planet inspire a sense of awe, and Carreiro enhances the action with moments of deep poignant observations, creating a story filled with a rich understanding of human darkness and light. The book ends on a well-earned cliffhanger, leaving readers clamoring for the next volume of this planned 9-parts series. An intriguing and deftly plotted hybrid of dystopian SF, and Fantasy.
The Pilgrim – Part I: Immortality Wars
A. Keith Carreiro
Pub date June 8 2023
Price $18.00 (USD) Paperback, $4.99 Kindle edition