Unregistered - Book Review

Unregistered

Author: Phillip Lacy
Genre: Fiction - Fantasy
Publisher: Matador
Date Published: December 6, 2023
ISBN-10: N/A
ISBN-13: N/A

Book Review of :  Unregistered



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Unregistered, by P T Lacy, is a fun fantasy or science fiction novel with dystopian overtones. Set in the year 2000, in and near London, the novel inspires the reader to look into the future, or is it the past? At this time, one in a million ordinary people are known to have been born with talents and strange abilities, such as being able to fly and having super strength that confuse and confound the general public. Chapter One introduces the character, Red Line, a Talented who has the ability to bring justice to criminals. With fast-paced action, Red Line confronts and, in gruesome detail, apprehends criminals in the act of committing a robbery. His Talents are exposed to the reader, making him a hero and setting the tone for the novel. He also must find any Talents that are Unregistered.

Chapter Two switches to Susan’s story. She is placed in her school classroom where the subject of fictional superheroes and real-life Talents are discussed. Susan’s secret as a Talent with many magical abilities are shared with the reader. She knows that normal people (called Normies) in society both fear Talents and their use of special abilities.   She is Unregistered. The teacher’s discussion of Talents reveals the different kinds of Talents’ abilities and their code names. The storyline involves Talents who are supposed to be registered by their code name, actual name, and biography. The registered Talents are under the Authority and can be called to aid the Police. They are into spy stuff and security, snooping out terrorists. However, some Talents use their powers in idealistic ways to fight injustice on their own. There are reports of Talents attacking Normies. 

The Talent Crime Squad investigates the gruesome murder of several Talents. A police mole is suspected.  Several exciting scenarios are shared to build the tension of the plot, as Red Line, Susan, and others test one another’s honesty and commitment to the cause of crime fighting. The intertwining of each major character’s personal and “normal” life with their life disguised as a Talented is paramount to the plot. The sequencing of the plot is structured around the Talents of the characters. In spite of the often bloody violence, the story has many humorous moments.

The conclusion to this good vs evil novel, with its imaginative cast of characters, is satisfying. Several take-a-way ideas are presented. Power and responsibility, the damned or blessed, and the idea that naivety and idealism are close cousins. Would the reader like to live in a society with superheroes?


Reviewed by: Carole W

About Phillip Lacy


Born and raised in the South-West of England, the author tried his hand at many different pursuits before settling on his current career. He lives in Poland with his wife, where he works as an EFL teacher. Unregistered is his first novel. He has many different influences, from the comic fantasy of Terry Pratchett, to the immaculate sci-fi of Kim Stanley Robinson, to the artistry of Cormac McCarthy.





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