Monday, December 26, 2016

MAYA: Symbiogenesis Book One by Pete Barber

Genre: Thriller/Sci-Fi/Contemporary Fiction


Hours before doctors plan to switch off her premature daughter’s life-support systems, Lauren risks all and injects her baby with a stolen experimental drug. The last-resort treatment transforms Maya’s genetic fingerprint. While Lauren struggles to disguise the reason for her daughter’s miraculous recovery, Maya develops unique abilities that may signal a new, more hope-filled future for humankind, or perhaps sound its death knell.”


Born into a blue-collar family in Liverpool, England, Pete immigrated to the US in the early 90s and settled in North Carolina.

After surviving near-death experiences at ages six and eighteen, he led a haphazard life, putting bread on the table as a plumber, computer programmer, salesperson, marketing executive, hotel operator, real-estate developer, and llama farmer.

Pete writes fast-paced fiction that makes people think--what if?

Pete's debut thriller--NanoStrike--has over 150 5-STAR reviews on Amazon US. Love Poison, a suspenseful romance was published September 2014. When A Warrior Comes Home followed in March 2015. MAYA, November 2016... more to come!

Mr. Barber is also a Pal reviewer at BigAl’s Books and Pals, to learn more please visit his website or follow him on Facebook.


Mr. Barber doesn’t waste any time setting up his characters and scenes. The players are all fully developed and well portrayed. I tried to hold off on how I felt about Lauren through most of the book. She has a lot to lose with the critical decisions she has to face time and time again throughout the story. I didn’t have any problem identifying with her character though. Lauren is intelligent and well centered while Margaret, Lauren’s mother, was a different story. I didn’t like her at all. Fact is, Margaret’s beliefs were a major plot twist in the story and I was sure I wouldn’t like where the story was headed. However, Mr. Barber’s intelligent writing style brought me around to the compassion of understanding and accepting things you can’t change about the people you love. Margaret isn’t a bad person, she was under a misperception and simple minded. Lauren understood this and added a balance in the way she handled her mother.

Maya is a suspenseful sci-fi that employs biogenetics with a spiritual edge. I found it easy to become engrossed in all the implications involved that then evolved into this stunningly inspiring tale. I had no problem suspending my disbelief to revel in the possibilities. There are several twists that complicate the plot, some were unexpected, others you could see coming. Despite that, this is a story that will play with your emotions and may cause you to question your own beliefs.

I appreciated the time jumps used in the story. Things could have easily bogged down with too many details that weren’t relevant to moving the story forward. I have no doubt that these time warps will be filled in with flash backs in future additions to the series. The ending is tense and shocking, but adds closure to an important story arc. It also gives us a peek at how Maya has matured over the years and gives us insight into her mindset. Neither suspense nor sci-fi are my normal genres, but I loved this compelling story and can’t wait to read more about Maya.

Buy now from:    Amazon US    Amazon UK


MAYA is book one in the Symbiogenesis series.

Format/Typo Issues:

No significant proofing issues.

Rating: ***** Five Stars

Reviewed by: ?wazithinkin

Approximate word count: 70-75,000 words


Malcolm R. Campbell said...

Okay, already, you might have tempted me into buying the book.

?wazithinkin said...

I'm sure you will enjoy this book, Mr. Campbell. Thanks for dropping in and commenting. :)

Maria said...

Interesting cover. Good review. Intriguing.

?wazithinkin said...

Thank you, Maria. I appreciate your comments.

Unknown said...

Thank you, ?wasi for taking the time to read MAYA and for writing such a thoughtful review. I'm delighted you enjoyed the story.... Pete

?wazithinkin said...

You are welcome, Mr. Barber. MAYA is a unique story and I look forward to reading more about her. Thanks for dropping in and commenting.