After the Queens of the Sicarii, by William Wire: A Review

Social Agent Nancy Rose inhabits a dark and dangerous world, where she must navigate a complex, convoluted underworld where power resides in the few, lives are short and shadowed, and the lines between law enforcement and the underworld are blurred.

Several generations after a virus has destroyed all men, scientists have found a way to return men to the world, but there are those – the Queens of the Sicarii – who oppose this. Nancy Rose has her own complex relationships with men, and her own motives in the pursuit of her duties may be suspect. While Wire’s novel is science fiction, it owes much to classic crime noir.

Wire writes in a style that strongly evokes the dark mood and setting of this story. Characterization and character development reflect the noir genre, revealing just enough about the protagonist, her allies and her enemies to move the plot forward. The first book in an intended series, it could be argued that the world-building is a bit weak, but more is likely to be revealed in further stories. There were times I found myself slightly confused about the motivations of some characters, and I found the the pacing a bit uneven.  But overall, After the Queens of the Sicarii kept me intrigued and entertained. Wire’s world may be post-apocalyptic, and his protagonist is a young woman, but this is far from the various Hunger Games or Insurgent clones that are offered to me for review.  Four stars for this debut novel from a talented new author.

 

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