cover image Cain’s Blood

Cain’s Blood

Geoffrey Girard. Touchstone, $25.99 (288p) ISBN 978-1-4767-0404-3

Like the best SF thrillers, Girard’s promising debut is plausibly grounded in reality. Rather than clone the most gifted members of humanity, the U.S. military has chosen to fund a scientific program to create replicas of notorious serial killers of the last century, such as Jeffrey Dahmer and Ted Bundy, because that’s where the money is. Such rampant cynicism doesn’t sit well with Shawn Castillo, a former commander of U.S. Special Operations, who has been brought in to track down six teenage boys, all clones, who have escaped their birthplace, an institute in Pennsylvania, and taken three staff members hostage. Readers will hope that Girard, who gets the most out of his frightening idea, will continue this Michael Crichton vein in a sequel. Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers will be publishing a YA version, Project Cain, simultaneously, told from the viewpoint of one of the teenage clones (see review, p. 71). Author tour. Agent: Peter H. McGuigan, Foundry Literary + Media. (Sept.)