Book Reviews

Baby X by Kira Peikoff

A tremendous thank you to Kira Peikoff, NetGalley, and Crooked Lane Books for my advanced reader copy of Baby X. This book is available March 5, 2024!

The Story

When any biological matter can be used to create life, stolen celebrity DNA sells to the highest bidder–or the craziest stalker–in this propulsive thriller.

With a vivid imagining of the future, Gattaca meets The Ones in Kira Peikoff’s Baby X .

In the near-future United States, where advanced technology can create egg or sperm from any person’s cells, celebrities face the alarming potential of meeting biological children they never conceived. Famous singer Trace Thorne is tired of being targeted by the Vault, a black market site devoted to stealing DNA. Sick of paying ransom money for his own cell matter, he hires bio-security guard Ember Ryan to ensure his biological safety.  

Ember will do anything she can to protect her clients. She knows all the Vault’s tricks–discarded tissues, used straws, lipstick tubes–and has prevented countless DNA thefts. Working for Thorne, her focus becomes split when she begins to fall for him, but she knows she hasn’t let anything slip–love or not, his DNA is safe. But then she and Thorne are confronted by a pregnant woman, Quinn, who claims that Thorne is the father of her baby, and all bets are off.   

Brilliantly plotted and terrifyingly prescient, Baby X is an unpredictable and relentless speculative thriller perfect for fans of Blake Crouch.

My Thoughts

I went into Baby X with the lowest of low expectations. I’m not sure what made me apply for it on NetGalley. (Truthfully, I apply for a lot of books, so who knows.) When I started reading it, I honestly thought it was going to be a junior-level sci-fi novel that would honestly make me DNF.

I was very wrong.

Honestly, I don’t know why I liked this book as much as I did. I love sci-fi books that aren’t too science-y. Baby X was exactly that. It convinced you that this modern science was legit without spending too much time going into the details or formulas. (AKA not as technical as Project Hail Mary)

The three different perspectives were unique enough, but all came together in the end very well. I appreciated the connection. Everything that was shared and written in this book had purpose in the overall story.

It was also a very quick read. I was engaged the whole time and found myself going back to the book and reading way past my bedtime.

I wouldn’t claim it as a trigger warning (because it’s a core theme of the book), but proceed with caution if you are sensitive to pregnancy, fertility, etc. I think that this book gives some hope and an optimistic view on these struggles that so many women go through, but I also think you need to protect your heart and sanity.

In the end, I gave Baby X four stars! That is pretty high praise from me, especially on a sci-fi book. I would definitely recommend it.

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