lucky little cat's Reviews > Touch

Touch by Claire North
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really liked it
bookshelves: books-b-might-like, literary-fiction-love, urban-fantasy, read-in-2019
Recommended to lucky little cat by: carol.

Ring-ring-ring. Hollywood calling Claire North. Quick, this needs to be made into a  movie, not a time-travel weeper this time,


Marilyn for a day. Or two.

but a heart-stopping espionage story about nothing less than body-snatching, murder, and the transmigration of souls.

Our hero, Kepler, is a world-weary (and displaced) immortal soul who borrows a new body once every six months. When Kepler leaves, the "host" body, be it man, woman, or child, will have no memories from the six months, and frequently hosts are left so disoriented that their next stop is the emergency room.

North handles it all ably: her hero (or heroine, depending on the body du jour) is decent and disillusioned, and tries to work out ethical compromises for pirating hosts' bodies and lives. North explores identity-theft anxieties and also cleverly pans rampant consumerism ("who are you wearing?")

North also has a grand time mapping out consequences and implications. For example, Kepler muses that in the digital age no body-snatching ghost has to leave himself a fortune buried in a brown-paper sack for his "heir." Kepler's a master of online banking (plus quick body-snatches to get random hosts to empty their wallets). The book is stuffed with fun details like this, including a quick visit to Marilyn Monroe.

The main plotline involves a serial killer who may have personal ties to our hero. And because North is such an overachiever, she also builds in a plausible romance.

My only reservation is that a villain or two were pretty predictably ma-a-a-ad. But North's made me enough of a fan to get me hoping for a sequel (as some subtle world-building details seem to imply).

And Hollywood loves sequels. Better start casting the dozen or so actors and actresses who'll be needed to play the parts of Kepler.
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Reading Progress

January 23, 2019 – Shelved
Started Reading
January 24, 2019 – Shelved as: books-b-might-like
January 24, 2019 – Shelved as: literary-fiction-love
January 24, 2019 – Shelved as: urban-fantasy
January 24, 2019 – Shelved as: read-in-2019
January 24, 2019 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-2 of 2 (2 new)

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carol. It would certainly be an interesting movie, that's for sure. If one had really great actors. Glad you enjoyed it. Mostly North has been doing one-offs since leaving her Matthew Swift series.


lucky little cat I had read and liked The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August, (I even reread Harry over Christmas.) But duh, it never occurred to me to look up her other books until I read your review. And I forgot North is a pseudonym.

And Harry held up beautifully to a second reading. I suspect I'll need to reread Touch to really catch all of the twisty details, but I'm already thrilled with how often I was surprised, both by the plot and the depth of characters.

Wanting a movie version is utterly self-serving on my part. I kept wondering how conversations and jumps would look.


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