Book of the Week

The Many Selves Of Katherine North by Emma Green. Photo: PA Photo/Bloomsbury Circus

The Many Selves Of Katherine North by Emma Green. Photo: PA Photo/Bloomsbury Circus

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The Many Selves Of Katherine North by Emma Green.

Debut novelist Emma Green’s foray into literary science fiction focuses on Katherine “Kit” North, a 19-year-old who projects her consciousness into animals for research purposes.

While living as an urban fox, she suffers an ‘incident’ that threatens her job, then her life, as she discovers that the company she has served for seven years is not as it seems.

Green flips between past and present, human and creature to tell Kit’s coming-of-age story, racking up suspense with a deftly handled environmental slant, while trying to describe radically different ways of experiencing the world.

It is reminiscent of the Matrix and K. A. Applegate’s Animorphs series, and, for the first few chapters, does read like a Young Adult novel with the odd curse word thrown in. However, Green’s psychological approach to the empathy and disconnect constantly shedding identities causes in its human protagonist lifts The Many Selves into an engaging take on established tropes.