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Pleasant but evasive, this episodic novel posits a future where the alien Kéthani give humanity a sort of immortality. Upon their deaths, people with Kéthani implants are resurrected on the aliens' home world with improved bodies and minds and given the choice of returning home or spreading the Kéthani gospel throughout the galaxy. As religions and governments struggle to adjust, Brown (Helix ) focuses on the experiences of neighbors and friends in a small English village, keeping the vibe as low-key as their evenings in the local pub. When a member of another alien race kills one of the Kéthani, the characters begin to wonder who the antagonists are and what they're trying to do, as well as who (or what) the Kéthani themselves are and why they are aiding (or manipulating) humankind. But each section ends just when it should begin, dissolving tension and leaving these questions unanswered. The result is an unsatisfying cop-out. (May)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.