Golden Age Timeline Publishing (2021)
Reviewed by Paige Lovitt for Reader Views (12/2021)
Hadden and his daughter Tia reside in seclusion in their mansion. Her father has always seemed very paranoid about protecting her from the outside world. Her mother disappeared when she was very young. When events happen that force Hadden to disclose Tia’s true heritage to her, she learns that she has family waiting for her in the middle earth, and she has a very important role to play in trying to save them. The people who reside on the earth’s surface are all part of a 25,000-year genetic experiment from which involved her family as genetic engineers. The people who live in the subterranean parts of the earth all have special abilities and duties based upon their aptitudes. Tia’s role is to be a critical one for helping to save both peoples from an AI invasion that is about to come to a head. Hadden has to jump around several timelines to try to correct past errors and to bring people in who are critical to resolving this crisis. If they don’t succeed, the planet will be destroyed.
I decided to start reading “Helio Tropez,” before I went to sleep one evening, figuring I would be able to get about 15 minutes in before I was ready to crash out. Four hours later, I forced myself to put the put down, so I could save my vision for work the next day!
C.M. Rieger is a masterful writer who knows how to capture her reader’s attention immediately, and then not let go. While this amazing science fiction novel has over 700 pages, it is still a very fast read. The characters go through a tremendous amount of development as the story unfolds. In order to step into their full power, they must work through some very deep rooted issues. They have to do this quickly, too. On the surface, much of what causes their issues is the same stuff that we deal with in our reality, but there is so much more going on below the surface. The AI invaders known as SIMS have created subterfuge to manipulate people’s thoughts, feelings, and actions. The conspiracy issues are very complex and will take a lot of work to unravel.
As I read, I kept thinking, “Hey wait a minute, could that really be happening to us?” I loved this component of the novel because there is a metaphysical aspect that makes “Helio Tropez,” so much more than just a good read. Fans of science fiction/fantasy novels will enjoy this novel. Readers who are seeking something with more depth will be thrilled to step out of the mundane and into this world.