Terrible affairs are bound to happen when science ventures to replicate the human race. This is exactly what happens in the science fiction book Vitro written by young author Jessica Khoury. Sophie Crue, a rebellious 17 year old, is living in Boston with her depressed father. She feels the weight of the separation from her mother heavily upon her shoulders. Sophie’s mother, Moira Crue, had left Boston a few years before. This was due to her work on Skin Island in Guam, their old home. While enjoying her summer away from school, Sophie receives a mysterious email from her mother, saying that there is an emergency on the island and that she should come immediately. Sophie’s mother is working for a company named Corpus who are dedicated and determined to replicate the human race by creating beings known as the Vitros. These Vitros will be the future of work, doing jobs that humans would be unable to do unassisted. They will establish a better future, unless something goes… wrong. Sophie receives a plane ride to Skin Island from her childhood friend, Jim Julian, and arrives to the welcome surprise of their plane’s wheels combusting, leading to a jostling crash landing. The duo then meet a mischievous boy known on the island as Nicholas. He is said to know where Sophie’s mother is and she goes with him to search, leaving Jim behind to fix his plane. Jim is concerned about his plane wreck, but should he be more worried about the stranger taking Sophie to her mother who might not even exist?
I highly encourage suspense loving, advanced readers to delve into this book. Combining science and creativity, Khoury constructs a wonderful medley of unique twists and turns in the fast-paced plot. Each chapter consists of a different perspective from one of the three main characters: Sophie, Jim, or Lux, Sophie’s twin Vitro sister. This affixes a new understanding of how the characters’ feelings differ from one another in certain situations. If I were to request one thing to be changed about this book, it would be the ending. The last few sentences were depressing and the novel ended in a cliffhanger. Currently there is no plan for a second book following Vitro, so I would rather it end in a resolution of the plot. This new, thrilling novel is a must read book that will definitely be next on readers’ lists.