Blog Tour and Book Review: Murder in the Multiverse by R.E. McLean
The Multiverse Investigations Unit - fighting crime across the Multiverse
Alex Strand is finding her way as the newest and most ginger member of the University of Berkeley Physics Faculty.
But when the murder of reclusive internet billionaire Claire Pope proves insoluble, she’s recruited to the top-secret Multiverse Investigations Unit.
Hidden in the parking lot of San Francisco Police HQ, the unit investigates murders by sending officers to parallel universes in which the victim is still alive – for now.
Alex needs to prove herself. With the help of the mysterious Sarita Jones, the bizarrely-bearded Sergeant Mike Long and Schrödinger the quantum cat, can she track down the murderer, prevent the same crime from happening in a parallel version of San Francisco, and get back before closing time?
When quantum physicist Alex Strand is recruited by the San Francisco P.D. to help them investigate the murder of a reclusive billionaire, the last thing she expects is to be assigned to prevent the billionaire’s murder… in a parallel universe. Fortunately, Alex already knows quantum travel isn’t just theoretical, due to her cat Schrodinger’s unnerving habit of being both alive and dead, so she’s not as paralysed by the possibility as I probably would have been. Instead, she retains enough presence of mind to flirt with her hot co-worker Sarita, notice colleague Mike’s quantum facial hair changes on every trip they make between universes, and save the day.
There’s an awful lot going on here and I definitely wanted more of Alex developing relationships with people so that we actually started to care about them. This wasn’t helped by a lot of the characters existing in two different iterations in the two parallel universes, but being quite different in each, which got pretty confusing at times. Mike and Sarita were the two constants (despite Mike’s quantum facial hair) but we really didn’t get too much time to get to know them.
It’s understandable to want to avoid blinding the reader with too much science, especially when it comes to something like quantum physics, but I did think Alex came across as too unquestioning. There’s no way I’d have been able to avoid asking a million questions even if I didn’t think I’d understand the answers, so a research scientist not taking the opportunity was actually less believable than the quantum travel itself!
Alex being a lesbian was a nice surprise, as I’ve unfortunately found cozy mystery to be a less-than-diverse genre, and her love interest Sarita was of Indian origin too. It didn’t feel like either of them were just there to tick diversity boxes, either. There’s a lot of amusing moments - co-worker Madge Ciccone gave me the giggles on more than one occasion - and some fascinating worldbuilding, but this did feel very much like an introduction to a series, particularly given the cliffhanger situation one of the secondary characters was left in at the end of the book. I’d enjoy reading more in the adventures of Alex, Schrodinger and co., but I’d love to see more character building as well as the great world-building on display here. Four stars.
Disclaimer: I received a review copy of this book via Rachel’s Random Resources.
Author Bio –
Greetings, budding Multiverse Investigator! My name's RE McLean and I'm the author of the Multiverse Investigations Unit books and stories. When I'm not fighting off quantum cats, jumping between parallel universes and wondering how my character got turned into a ten-foot rabbit, I spend my time geeking out with my two sons, laughing at my (very stupid but totally unquantum) cats and planning the next story. Do YOU have what it takes to become a Multiverse Investigator? Join Alex Strand and her team of oddballs as they hop between universes, solve crimes, and always get back before closing time. And find out how Alex's cat Schrödinger became a quantum cat in his EXCLUSIVE origins story. All at multiverse-investigations.com.
Social Media Links –