Book Review: Cells


Happy New Year, everyone! I pray you all had a pleasant holiday season, and a Merry Christmas!


I am sorry for the delay in recent book reviews. I had picked up a few promising books by other indie authors only to have to set each of them aside for different reasons. However, when I set those down, I related to a few authors my growing frustration (regarding those reasons I set aside nearly half a dozen other books) and one author reached out to me, offering me a read of her book.


Julia Cowan's first book, Cells, is not one I had intended to review, because my intention was to review only other fantasy novels here. However, once I started reading, I could not put it down.

Cells is an intriguing thriller appropriate for young adults and older that touches on the topic of generational crime and failing justice systems.


Jim, a struggling but well-intentioned teen not yet 18, is a young man struggling to do the right thing. He is also impulsive and reacts to situations as one who is used to being around drugs, alcohol, abuse, and petty crime. That is, he does not see things as cut and dry, right and wrong, as an onlooker might. One of his impulsive decisions lands him in an unusual prison where he discovers his father is also being kept for much harsher crimes.


From there, the story of Jim, his father, and his jailers takes unusual and unexpected turns proving that not everything is what it appears, and very little about what we perceive can prepare us for the deeper, often darker truths behind someone else's motives. By the end of the book, I was left feeling empathy or disdain for all the characters involved as well as a well-deserved sense of justice achieved though not in a fairytale ending sort of manner, which is why many thrillers are so beloved.


I appreciate the way Ms. Cowan was able to build her characters throughout the course of the book. She gave each one depth that made them relatable even if I didn't particularly like one or two of them. She did an excellent job of laying the groundwork that shaped Jim's ideologies that drove even his most impetuous actions. What she did even better was lay groundwork for her other characters that allowed them to grow more dark and sinister as the story progressed.


Cells is a relatively short novel. I am a speed reader and was able to finish it within several hours (over the course of a few days, because life still needs to be lived.. LOL). The story flows well with no lumbering plot lines or glaring plot holes. Based on how much I enjoyed this book, I am already looking forward to Ms. Cowan's next work when it comes out.


You can order a copy of Cells on Amazon as an ebook or in paperback. Be sure you follow her author page too!


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**I gained no compensation in exchange for writing this book review.

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