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The Curing Begins by Alec Birri

The Curing Begins - Alec Birri

Note: This is Book 2 in the series and works best if you enjoy Book 1 first.

This book starts off in 1970s Argentina instead of 2026 UK where Book 1 left us, so be prepared for that. Perhaps half the book is spent in the past instead of the near future and while that initially threw me for a loop, I was also immediately drawn into the life of a young cop in Argentina. He’s been assigned to look into a missing person case even though there isn’t much hope in finding the person. If I recall correctly, his name is Emmanuel…. but I could be wrong.

So in this little village of native Argentinians, there is an orphanage and the local reverend appears to be helpful. His assistanct at the orphanage is Maria who is perhaps in her early 20s. Now I didn’t really care for the instant love thing that happens between her and Emmanuel but I did like both characters quite a bit.

As Emmanuel digs into the case, he notices some very odd things about the kids. They seem to have undergone some brain surgeries and some seem to be mentally slow while others have other abilities. Then there’s the mysterious Uncle Joe who is nowhere to be seen but everyone speaks highly of him as the village’s savior. Eventually, as the description of the book says, Emmanuel discovers he’s dealing with a former Nazi in hiding. Things turn exciting in Argentina!

Then we jump forward a few years as the hunt continues, then a few more years, and eventually we find ourselves in 2026 UK for the second half of the book. Once again, we get to hang out with Professor Savage, nurse Tracy Richards, Dr. James Adams, and PM Alex Salib. Several months have past since we last saw them. The remainder of the Alzheimer’s patients from Book 1 have died, either by natural causes or voluntary suicide.

The first half of this book was very well done. The characters were interesting and in an interesting plot. Maria, while the only female character with lines and a name, had plot relevant status. She had dimension and secrets of her own. Meanwhile, in the second half of the book, the ladies are back to being love interests and comforters. Tracy has potential but mostly she’s here for the sex fantasies. Alex Salib is a little more interesting this time around but she’s still pretty one dimensional – righteous anger.

On the other hand, the plot has thickened. Professor Savage isn’t up to what I thought he was up to. Now I think he’s determined to do something much more wide-ranging and sinister. I’m very intrigued by him. Then I also really felt for Dr. Adams though I felt he gave up the fight a little too easily. He is positive he didn’t download that image of a child yet other than some verbal protests he caves in to Professor Savage’s suggestions and guidance really easily.

The ending leaves us with plenty of questions for where Savage plans to take the world and the future for these beloved characters. I also look forward to seeing what the solid tie is between Argentina 1970s and Savage of 2026 UK. I have an inkling but I want my guess confirmed. Looking forward to Book 3! 4.5/5 stars.

The Narration: Jonathan Keeble did a great job with this narration. I loved all his accents and he kept each character distinct. His female voices were believable. I especially liked his portrayal for Emmanuel who goes through some character growth and also quite the range of emotions in this story. 5/5 stars.

I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by Alec Birri. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.