The Album of Dr. Moreau

Daryl Gregory. Tor.com, $14.99 trade paper (176p) ISBN 978-1-250-78210-6
Gregory (Spoonbenders) constructs a clever mash-up of H.G. Wells’s The Island of Doctor Moreau, a locked room mystery, and the boy band phenomenon in this zippy but complex tale. The WyldBoyZ—comprising five genetically engineered animal-human hybrids—are one of the most popular boy bands in the world circa 2001. When Dr. M, their mentor and agent, is murdered in a Las Vegas hotel room, evidence points toward one of the WyldBoyZ as the killer. Now it’s up to Det. Lucia Delgado to untangle a web of lies, alibis, and oversized personalities before a killer escapes justice. But as she pieces together the history of how the WyldBoyZ came to be, Lucia realizes there’s more to Dr. M’s death than meets the eye. The premise is catchy, and Gregory’s exploration of identity and humanity through the lens of pop-cultural superstardom meshes well with the whodunit plot, though a glossed-over last-minute reveal goes frustratingly underexplained. Self-aware humor and punchy puns liven up the narrative, resulting in a quirky and entertaining twist on a classic. Agent: Seth Fishman, the Gernert Co. (May)
Reviewed on : 01/26/2021
Release date: 05/18/2021
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Horror
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