Chin, Alan. “Surviving Immortality”, Dreamspinner Press, 2018.
A Story of the Fountain of Youth
One of the great stories of our world is the search for the fountain of youth. It is a story that never gets old and pops up after few years when someone claims to have found it. I am sure that the story has appeared in LGBT literature before now but I am totally unaware of it. Alan Chin brings us his own story about a formula that keeps people young and healthy for thousands of years. We meet
Kenji Hiroshige who discovers a formula that does just that but he tells the world he will not release information until every gun, tank, battleship, and bomb has been destroyed. When there is peace and we live in a world with no weapons, we can all live forever world is free of weapons, everyone can live forever. After Kenji made that statement, he went into hiding but first, his son, 18-year-old Matt Reece is exposed to the formula. Kenji takes Matt with him, but as they try to get past government agencies and corporations that see huge profits from Kenji’s discovery, Matt learns that world peace is probably not his father’s only goal. However, as a young man who has lived in isolation until now, there is nothing he can do.
All is not well with the world in this story yet we have one young man who shows the courage necessary to be his own person. When his older brother Patrick went off to school, Matt has felt alone and it gets worse from day to day. More important is that he senses that things will get bad. His two fathers are lost to him because of work or alcohol making him feel more alone. He has panic attacks from the feeling that he has been abandoned, left behind with a dying grandfather and a dying dog. Jessup, his biological father tries to help Matt get through this and then his stepfather, surprisingly helps the dog to get better from something he holds in his hand.
Matt Reece sneaks into Kenji’s veterinary satchel and takes the device to use on his grandfather but Kenji rage at seeing what Matt has done is more than he can deal with. Before he realized it, he and Kenji were gone. He realizes that they are on the run, escaping the government and something even more powerful. Suddenly, Matt and Kenji are fighting for survival. The plot becomes complex although totally understandable and it has been a while since we have had an LGBT thriller like this that keeps us turning pages as quickly as possible. Tension builds steadily. Writer Alan Chin has crafted a story filled with action that does not let up. The high-speed chase in the story gives us a high-speed read that at times leaves us out-of-breath.
I do not want to ruin the plot by saying any more about it. The prose is excellent, the characters are richly developed and there are many. Romance is not a big theme here— we know that Kenji and Jessup are in a relationship but they end up on opposite sides and we get little indication what will happen to the two men.
I would love to be able to say more but I believe that by saying this is a special book, you will know that I recommend it highly. Like I said, we do not get reads like this often.