Division Zero by Matthew Cox

Division Zero (Division Zero #1) - Matthew S. Cox

Kirsten Wren, a psionic, is an agent with Division Zero, a division of the police force whose members all have special gifts. Kirsten can communicate telepathically and send mind blasts to others, though she's hesitant to use that power. But what makes her an outcast - even among her law enforcement peers in other divisions - is her gift to not only see ghosts, but to communicate with them and kick their asses with a psychic whip, if need be. Imagine Indiana Jones's leather whip crossed with a light saber.

With a wretched mother who used religion as an excuse to abuse her as a young child, Kirsten is scarred and still trying to cope with her mother's abuse, though she hasn't had to suffer her mother's abuse for a long time, seeking refuge with Division Zero as a child, and training to become an agent.
The other lead character we get to know well is Kirsten's partner, Dorian Marsh. Though a charming fellow, I was confused by his lack of involvement, especially in scenes where his actions would have benefited Kirsten's welfare, until it hit me - long before I was supposed to know. It's an interesting "Dr. Malcolm Crow" kind of twist, and if you're reading fast and not catching the tiny details, you'll miss it and find out when the author reveals it.

The only thing that bothered me about the writing was the lack of dialogue tags that would reveal a character's emotion in the moment. For instance, in one scene, a big cop from another division is interrogating an AI known as a doll. He says something to her, but it isn't until the next paragraph, where she cringes from his yelling that the reader is aware that he was actually yelling at her. That kind of information sets the emotion of the scene, and should be revealed in the moment. It pulled me out of the story a few times, and I found it distracting.

However, I was completely fascinated with the world the author created. With his attention to detail and amazing descriptive scenes, I could easily imagine the hover cars, ad bots, holograms, droids, not to mention the manifestations, astral-projecting strings, and psychic whip. He did a fantastic job of breathing life to this cyberpunk world and it is obvious he did his research when it comes to police procedure. Attention readers, BOLO for Division Zero #2.

I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.


[I originally read this book in July 2014. I am in the process of transferring my blog contents.]