Spares by Alec McQuay

Spares by Alec McQuay
Spares by Alec McQuay. This edition Fox Spirit Books, 2012

After reading (and enjoying) Emily Nation I decided to give Spares a try, and it’s fair to say I wasn’t disappointed.

This one is also set an unspecified amount of time in the future, and again has a war without explanation in its backstory, but that’s pretty much where the similarities end. Instead of a sassy, foul-mouthed female assassin with a flair for the dramatic, we are presented with a somewhat disparate group of ne’er-do-wells eking out a living in a world where death no longer happens. Sure, you can get very badly injured, up to and including decapitation, but no injury will ever be enough to end your life.

I enjoyed this one almost as much as I enjoyed Emily Nation, but couldn’t quite get to grips with it as easily. The narrator (it’s all in the first person) never quite managed to elicit enough sympathy to make me root for him entirely and as a result I didn’t feel as emotionally invested in the story as I did with the author’s other book.

That said, I’d still recommend it, and look forward to seeing more of McQuay’s work in the future. Good stuff to fill an hour or two with.

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