The Echo Wife by Sarah Gailey (Goodreads Author)
Amy Caudill‘s review
If the “other woman” is actually another version of you how can you be upset with her? With yourself? Or do you simply blame your knowingly unfaithful soon-to-be ex? Evelyn Caldwell faces this dilemma when her husband appropriates her research into human cloning to make a copy of her that is more accommodating to his desires. Naturally she leaves him, but when the clone named Martine contacts her, she cannot resist meeting her domesticated twin.
When she finally visits Martine at the home she shares with Nathan, she is not prepared for the chaotic events that have happened there, or the lengths she will have to venture to protect herself, her reputation in the scientific community, and the innocent lives Nathan has badly abused.
As Evelyn and Martine bond over shared love and hatred of their mutual “husband,” they explore both their differences and similarities. Martine overrides her programming; and Evelyn reminisces about her life growing up, her early relationship with Nathan, and the experiences that have shaped her personality to make her who she is today.
In the end, they may not like each other but they decide they need each other for what each can offer her “sister.” The story ends in a surprisingly peaceful manner considering the hard road it takes the characters to get there.
The author raises many questions about the nature of humanity, the meaning of being human, and the ethics of human cloning. Are they lab specimens or are they human beings? Do they have the same feelings, the same desires, and the same life goals of naturally-grown humans? Who has the right or the capability to decide their fates?
This book combines science fiction with a murder plot and relationship drama of multiple characters, a couple of who are at their core strong, independent females. I recommend this book to readers across multiple genres and give it four stars for an interesting plot with many twists and a carefully thought-out administration of the “science.”