Lately I’ve started paying for books again. While there are plenty or offerings for free at Amazon and iBookstore and whatnot, the old adage ‘you get what you pay for’ seems to apply. There’s a reason the world has editors.

Inhuman, by Danielle Q. Lee, is an example of a good idea fumbled by a writer who could really benefit from the attention of an editor, or at least a good proof reader.

Our main character is a student whom we already know was born in unusual circumstances. She was raised in a traditional Hopi village (cool!) and is now off on the east coast attending university. To raise money for tuition, she volunteers as a gunea pig in a strangely-unfocussed medical study. Then her life suddenly gets weird.

The thing is, you see, our new friend Cassia isn’t human — much to her surprise. Results from a blood test show that her DNA is completely different — a triple helix rather than double (which makes it not DNA at all, actually), and a different number of chromosomes. This catches the eye of a super-secret super-evil government agency whose mandate is to investigate weird shit. And kill it, no matter how useful it might be.

Somehow, despite having absolutely different genetic material, Cassia is able to interbreed with humans. For some reason, the Evil Agency knows this. For some reason, they are more interested in the offspring of an alien than the alien herself. For some reason…

Yeah, there’s a lot of that.

Then there’s the boyfriend problem. She meets a guy, they hit if off, then (*gasp!*) it turns out he’s one of the bad guys! Only… not really?!? He’s doing evil things against his will.

There is an element to the ending that I really appreciated, however, the sort of thing that never happens in stories like these. So bonus points for the writer on that account. Still and all, this novel effectively ended my quest for free material worth reading. It was free, and not worth the price.

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