Twin-Bred

Twin-Bred

by Karen Wyle

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Overview

Twin-Bred by Karen Wyle

Can interspecies diplomacy begin in the womb?

After seventy years, the human colonists still know almost nothing about the native Tofa. Misunderstandings breed conflict, and the conflicts are escalating. Scientist Mara Cadell's radical proposal: that host mothers carry fraternal twins, human and Tofa, in the hope that the bond between twins can bridge the gap between species. Mara knows about the bond between twins: her own twin, Levi, died in utero, but she has secretly kept him alive in her mind as companion and collaborator.

Perhaps Mara should have expected the enigmatic Tofa to have their own reasons to support her project. Perhaps the ever-cynical Levi should have warned her that members of the human government might use her twins as weapons against the Tofa. Will the Twin-Bred bring peace, war, or something else entirely?

Science fiction with a sociological and psychological focus, TWIN-BRED follows in the footsteps of Ursula K. LeGuin's The Left Hand of Darkness and Mary Doria Russell's The Sparrow.

"[O]ne of the best science fiction novels I've read in decades. . . literary fiction as well as S-F. . . one of the most original stories I've ever read, not an easy thing given the countless variations on human/alien encounters and relations already published. In addition, the book is beautifully written and riveting. The complex, flawlessly structured, plot evolves logically, but continues to surprise to the very end. There is appropriate dramatic tension throughout. Highly recommended for lovers of both cerebral S-F and literary fiction." -- author R. Lee Holz

"An original and beautifully written SciFi story . . . The Tofa are interesting and well worked out aliens . . . Wyle still leaves some hope that we as a species might one day see the light. All in all a beautiful, thought provoking tale. I will keep an eye out for Wyle's next book." -- Carien Ubink, Pearls Cast Before a McPig

"Now and then I read a really good book, and this is one of the best . . . Escaping from an over-crowded Earth, humans ... settle on Tofarn ... Trouble inevitably flares between the native Tofa and the human newcomers, mostly because of mutual ignorance. What is needed is a means of bringing the two communities closer ... What follows is the story of a scientific attempt to produce that perfect solution; the setbacks and the successes, the joys and the unforeseen disasters. A happy ending? A hopeful one, definitely! I would love a sequel to this beautifully written, captivating novel. More please!" - author Ellen Ghyll

"There is something about this book that lingers. I feel that each character reacts in authentic and appropriate ways...Wyle does not shy from the tough parts when necessary, but there is also humor and warmth when warranted. I was charmed by the young twins, part of a lofty "project," as they start acting like, well, kids. I cried more than once when Mara, the Project's director, experiences the unusual connection with her own dead twin. It feels as though there's more story to come, and I hope so. I would love to learn more about the Twin-breds and what they have to offer a universe filled with conflict. Consider this an official request for a sequel!" -- author Nadine Galinsky Feldman

(Now including the first chapter of the sequel, Reach)

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781463578916
Publisher: CreateSpace Publishing
Publication date: 10/13/2011
Pages: 354
Product dimensions: 5.06(w) x 7.81(h) x 0.74(d)

About the Author

Karen A. Wyle has been reading science fiction nonstop for some decades. The day she met her husband, they spent two hours talking about Robert Heinlein. Eventually, inevitably, she ended up writing science fiction. Wyle is also a photographer, writes picture books, follows politics obsessively, and practices appellate law. She has two daughters who are also writers and artists.

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Twin-Bred 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 9 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Interesting concept, well thought out.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Kindred_Dreamheart More than 1 year ago
Big thanks to the author for entrusting me with an honest review. From the moment I first saw the cover, I knew this book would freak me out. I'd admit I was kind of scared. Hey cover art is a VERY powerful thing. I've been known to love a book far more then it deserved or pass it up completely as because of the creativity invested in that one single image. But Fear? Fear is an entirely NEW emotion. Therefore true to my nature, no way was I going to let an eerie drawing, as they used to say in my old neighborhood, "punk" me. So I, with much effort, steered my eyes to the synopsis: THIS PEEKED MY INTEREST. So naturally, I agreed to review the book. From the moment I received the ebook via email, my husband and I were is constant discussion. It reminds me of my high school days on the debate team. This is a debate worthy book. There's alot of themes that's keep your mental wheels turning and launching random conversations with strangers long after the story's over. I won't analyze every political or scientific study depicted in the book. However one rendition that was apparent was the L.E.V.I. or Twin-Bred project. It has such similarities and symbolism to the Biblical story of Jacob and Esau. The "two nations, or species in this case, in the womb" as a means of all the motives posed was genius. The personal and psychological and the public and national dimensions of the twin-bred union between the two species are awe inspiring noteworthy. This story is told in third person point of view. This was both a positive and a negative. The positive is it allowed an insider view of every mechanic of the story and character. The negative is it made the characters look one dimensional. Eve after reading the entire story, I still don't feel as if I know the characters very well. In terms of believable, everyone acted too weird to be considered normal. Heck even the main scientist Mara Cadell was kind of "off her rocker". But I won't get into all that. Mara Cadell was great lead character. She a lonely, crazy, smart, lady engrossed in her work. You can't help but love her. Overall I liked this story. The ending was very unexpected. The reason I can't give it 5 is because it was slow in places; and I'm an action-loving kind of girl. In Summary: Tofarn is the planet the Humans fled to after they used up Earth. The story doesn't really focus on Tofarn, so you'll only get snipids of this new world. But anyway, they land and see that this save haven is already populated. Needless to say, there is no peace. The Twin-Bred project was created to link the bridge: one human, one Tofu embryo placed in the womb of a human or Tofu host. The experient follows the twins from before IVF to adulthood. If you're wondering how this experiment progressed socially and politically. you'll have to read this to find out. I would recommend this to sci-fi fanatics and adults. YA readers may enjoy it also, but there's very little normal teenage content to relate. 3.5 hearts
lauralovesreviewingLT More than 1 year ago
Twin-Bred is not my usual type of reading. When I grasped where the story was taking me, I became absorbed in it. The planet of Tofarn. Humans and Tofa trying to live side-by-side. Lack of communication and social understanding make them incompatible. One woman's experiment to enable them to co-exist in harmony. Filled with characters you can engage with and intricate detail, Karen Wyle has written an edgy story that quickly takes off and makes you believe in the possibilities. This book is a gem that shines brightly and I hope there will be a sequel.
Gethsemane More than 1 year ago
Having exhausted Earth’s resources, humans have been forced to find another planet which will sustain them. Crossing galaxies, they finally come upon one that looks as if it’ll be able to do just that. Unbeknownst to them, another indigenous race already lives there. Nonetheless, the humans will not be deterred and are determined to live amongst these weird, yet intelligent, beings whom they have learned are called Tofa. Colonizing the new planet is not easy. Relationships between the two races are strained as both seek to govern the other. Communications between both species are practically non-existent as tensions increase and war soon breaks out. The governing power knows that something needs to be done in order to maintain peaceful relations, yet they’re unsure of what to do. Mara Cadell, a scientist in her own right, steps in and suggests that they experiment on whether human and Tofa mothers can carry a set of twins, a child from each species, within their wombs in hopes of broadening their limited communication with the Tofa. She believes that the pairs will allow them to form bonds that may transcend life as they know it so that they can learn more about the perplexing race. Yet what they don’t know is that she also has a reason behind wanting to conduct the experiment – one she hopes will help her come to terms with herself and the past she’s tried to leave behind. The experiment is soon underway but the strains between the Tofa and humans continue to escalate. Mara and the surrogate mothers bond with the children, helping them grow along the way. Their plan is to slowly integrate them into society in hopes of gaining a better understanding on how the two races can co-exist. Yet no one imagined the repercussions of such actions. Mistrust builds on both sides and lives are lost in the process as the scientists seek to better command the already shaky boundaries. Despite this, strong bonds are forged along the way that allow Mara and her subjects to remain close in the face of such adversity. This was such a unique and quite riveting story. I enjoyed every minute. Karen did a remarkable job in fleshing out her characters and the world they live in. So much so, in fact, that it left me wanting to read more. Mara’s story is very heart-felt and I think we can all relate to losing someone at one point or another. She shows us, though, that anything is possible if you put your mind to it. The story and history behind the Tofa was also endearing, even if they frustrated Mara and the others, at times, with the fact that they refused to communicate as needed. All in all, it’s quite a great read and I truly recommend it to others for reading.
Jill-Elizabeth More than 1 year ago
When you start gathering together strings of words that include interspecies diplomacy, intriguing, government, enigma, and ever-cynical (and those are just from the blurb!), you're sure to catch my eye. When you couple that with compelling writing, complex and interesting characters, a plot heavy on intrigue and drama (heavy, that is, without being melodramatic) and a unique setting, well, you're sure to catch much more than my eye. You'll also catch my interest and my admiration. Wyle's story has it all - laughter, tears, head-shaking, double-takes (literally, teehee), righteous indignation, a teensy bit of shame at the use-it-and-find-a-new-one attitude of all too many people... Twin-Bred is primarily the story of Dr. Mara Cadell, a scientist with a personal interest in twins that leads her to develop a strategy to save the planet. Not Earth, mind you, we humans abandoned that one ages ago in Wyle's clever creation. No, I'm talking about Tofarn, her decidedly original alterna-world which the humans invaded - wait, um, I mean, moved onto - after the Earth was no longer habitable. The Tofa and humans are having issues (surprise, surprise), and the good doctor's plan is aimed at resolving the ever-growing tensions between the races. Tensions that are, in large measure, due to the difficulties of inter-species communication as a result of the Tofa lack of what humans consider a face. Neato keen, eh? The aliens are unique, and the world they inhabit is as well. So is the good doctor's plan. She has decided that the solution to the communication gap is to genetically engineer a race of Twin-Bred - twins consisting of one human and one Tofa that are implanted in human and Tofa birth mothers. Why she thinks this will work is one of the more fascinating elements of the story - she bases her belief in the powers of twin communication on the "relationship" she has with her own twin, Levi. Why "relationship" you ask? Well, um, Levi died when Mara was a wee small baby. Double neato keen, eh? I couldn't agree more. Nothing like a little dead-twin communication to spark scientific creativity, eh? Then again, is Levi really "dead"? Wyle cleverly weaves a psychiatrist into the mix in a manner that leaves the reader wondering exactly what Levi's status is in this world (or any other) - wonder that only grows as the story develops and the plot thickens. This is a truly unique trip into a novel, intriguing, and reader-friendly world that is populated by a mixture of good guys, bad guys, and aliens - and believe me, you will shake your head more than once along the way as you try to decide which characters fall within which categories. There are some twists and turns I didn't see coming (regular readers already know this, but if you are new to my reviews/opinions, let me say this: there is no higher praise from me than when I acknowledge that an author threw me for a loop; when you read as much as I do, that doesn't happen near often enough for my taste!), and the plot moves along at a brisk yet not over-quick pace. There is a nice balance of science and fiction, with an emphasis on the latter. I read a lot of sci-fi, and occasionally find myself lost in the technicalities; Wyle managed to give enough technical details to keep me feeling like I was following why things worked/happened, but not so many that I ever felt adrift in a sea of overwhelming terminology. She also sets the ending up nicely for
SheilaDeeth More than 1 year ago
Long years ago humans colonized a planet already occupied by Tofa. The parallels with Europe invading America are obvious and delightfully underplayed. The science fiction aspects of a brave new world, genetic engineering, and ordinary people pursuing ordinary lives under extraordinary circumstances are enjoyably low-key and convincing. With misunderstandings between human and Tofa abounding, scientists and politicians look for solutions, and in Karen A. Wyle¿s Twin Bred, bereaved twin Mara offers one that just might work. The idea, to engineer human-Tofa twin births with surrogate parents, may sound somewhat odd, but the author soon makes it make sense, using Mara¿s prenatal link with her twin as catalyst. The author details social, political and scientific aspects of Mara¿s experiment very logically with excellent pacing, interspersing a wealth of characters and motivations and letting those characters grow. Soon the twins are growing too, both human and Tofa. Misunderstandings continue to proliferate, and a sense of mystery builds alongside the reader¿s curiosity. How will these children develop? Will they be able to make a difference? The novel follows the closed society of twins, parents, human, Tofa and scientists as the project continues. Set-backs, deliberate and accidental, steps forward, threats and imaginative solutions propel the tale. The characters all seem very real, even to the alien-human twins and their familial bonds. Karen Wyle¿s Twin Bred is a fascinating sci-fi epic with enjoyably convincing science, sadly plausible politics, and all the social mis-cues such a mixed society might expect. It¿s a truly enjoyable and exciting read with lots of twists and turns, plots and sub-plots, ethical dilemmas, and an alien race worthy of Orson Scott Card. A truly enjoyably scientific science-fiction story. Disclosure: I received a free ecopy of this book from Bewitching Book Tours in exchange for an honest review.
EnterThePortal More than 1 year ago
TWIN BRED is the fantastic debut novel by Karen A. Wyle, about the human colony on Tofarn as it struggles to interact with the native Tofa. The two species can barely communicate, and fundamentally do not understand each other. But Mara has a solution. Mara is a scientist who lost her twin brother, Levi, in utero. She always knew about him, and over the years, kept his memory by imagining him as he would have been. As a result of this connection, Mara believes that communications between the species can be improved by implanting one human and one Tofa embryo into host mothers of both species, creating 'twins' designed to act as liaisons between communities. It works. The story follows Mara and the children as they grow and mature, facing challenges that none had anticipated. Deep-seated prejudice on both sides threatens the project and the twin-bred's lives. Characters: *** 3 Stars There were simply too many points of view in this novel. Mara and Levi were great characters, both well-developed with distinct voices, and the two primary host mothers and their children are fantastic additions to the story, but at times I got lost in all of the voices and it could be difficult to remember all of the relationships involved. Plot: *** 4 Stars I loved the concept of TWIN BRED. The plot was both imaginative and well-designed. My only complaint really goes back to the characters, because I would have liked to have had longer sections from the main points of view, and could have done without some of the lesser points of view. In addition, the beginning background could have been a little better interwoven with the overall story. Setting: **** 3 Stars I wanted more description. The Tofa were described in detail, and certain of the surroundings were beautifully rendered, but overall I felt the setting wasn't built into the story with enough frequency. I kept imagining Earth, and would get shocked in a scene when things suddenly didn't match up to my vision. Relationships: *** 4 Stars There wasn't any romance built into the story, at least not in the traditional sense, so for this review I'm looking at the relationships between characters. In particular, I thought the depth of emotion and familial love was fantastic between the twins and their families. Mara and Levi were prominent in this, of course, but so were many of the twin-bred, particularly Judy and La-ren, and Jimmy and Peer-tek. Genre - Science Fiction: **** 4 Stars This was a great novel for a debut science fiction. Karen A. Wyle thought outside the box and developed a fantastic story with fun characters. I can't wait to read the sequel!
Sanz71 More than 1 year ago
Could an interspecies diplomacy begin in the womb?Could the Twin-Bred be the perfect answer to communicating and negotiating all the issues the Humans and Tofa? In Twin-Bred, the human colony on Tofarn and the indigenous Tofa have great difficulty communicating with and basically comprehending each other. Scientist Mara Cadell, who lost a fraternal twin in utero, proposes that host mothers of either or both species carry twins, one human and one Tofa, in the hope that the bond between twins can bridge the gap between species. Mara has secretly kept her own twin, Levi, alive in her mind as a companion and collaborator. Mara succeeds in obtaining governmental backing for her project - but both the human and Tofa establishments have their own agendas. Mara must shepherd the Twin-Bred through dangers she anticipated and others that even the canny Levi could not foresee. Will the Twin-Bred bring peace, war, or something else entirely?... Initially I found the book a bit hard going as the concept is quite complicated, but as you get further into the book and more is explained about "The Project" things become much clearer and you soon become attached to the main character Mara and of course the twin-bred themselves. Mara is a complicated character and at times you wonder if she has made up an imaginary friend whom she talks to and then you learn her true tragic story. You learn about the Tofa, the race that the planet really belongs there, then you learn about the humans who landed on the planet and are trying to take over. The story is of "The Project" and how both Tofa and Humans have their own agendas for this project. There are brilliant and poignant life stories within the actual main story. There are tragic deaths in the book too both Human and Tofa and how those affect the Twin-Breds who seem to belong no where. They are literally treat as out casts as they are neither Human nor Tofa in the eyes of those races. The story shows the issues of trust and different races learning to live together in peace. I could go on more and more about this book but do not wish to include spoilers, but I would compare this book to Across the Universe by Beth Revis. I hope that ther is a book two as I know i would read it and want to know what happens to the Twin-Bred and Mara and the other Humans. It is definitely worth reading!