cover image The Rosewater Insurrection

The Rosewater Insurrection

Tade Thompson. Orbit, $15.99 trade paper (400p) ISBN 978-0-316-44908-3

In the second installment of this mind-bending futuristic trilogy (following 2017’s Rosewater), the subtle alien invasion of Earth continues as the entity known as Wormwood expands its influence over the Nigerian city of Rosewater. The city’s mayor, Jack Jacques, wrestles with affairs of state as his declaration of independence meets with external resistance. Housewife Alyssa Sutcliffe awakens to memory gaps and doubts about her own identity. Government assassins and psychics engage in a secret conflict while representatives of the xenoform Homians proceed with their long-term plan to replace humanity through microorganic assimilation. Ultimately, open warfare breaks out, forcing those involved to seek a radical solution that will affect everyone living in Rosewater—humans and aliens alike. As with the first entry in this series, Thompson lays out the narrative in a non-linear fashion through multiple perspectives, resulting in a story that feels alternately epic and almost claustrophobically intimate. The slow pacing and numerous moving parts make this ambitious tale somewhat dense and difficult at first, but the exciting second half and intriguing ending set the stage for what promises to be a fascinating conclusion. (Mar.)