From the Cover: Months after his mysterious disappearance from a routine fishing trip, no one really expects over-the-hill Texas housewife Lory Latchley to find her missing husband—especially her husband. The Manufactured Identity is clinical psychologist Heath Sommer's ever-escalating immersion into the world of unlikely friends who each awaken to find their faithful companions missing without warning or reason. Desperate to find meaning in their pain, they are thrust by the auspices of fate into a common thread of mystery and human frailty. In the end, the fate of all may reside in the unstable hands of rookie pastor John Joe, but ultimately Lory and her newfound partners will uncover a truth so unnerving it makes even infidelity look palatable.
This is a psychological thriller that splinters off in many directions. I wish I could say who the main character was or was supposed to be, but the storyline has so many subplots that it hard to pin it down. In my opinion John Joe is the protagonist and Peter Mayberry (who also goes by many other names throughout the story) in the antagonist. John brings the story to a close and Pete is his nemesis during the winding tale, demanding Joe's help, which Pete ultimately denies and meets his unsavory end. The true love interest, though varied by the many characters of Peter Mayberry, is Addy Boku who finds herself falling in love with Joe who has all but sworn off women is his pursuit of what he feels in his true destiny, God.
So, it becomes the story of Addy, Joe, and Pete. Pete is an individual who is torn between his many lovers, both male and female. He seems to have a bottomless wealth, able to keep his many irons in the fires until he tires of a lover, and leaves by either his fake death or abandonment. Joe is the person Pete ultimately seeks out to help him discover why he's the way he is. It's an impossible task. But, who really is Pete, the sociable cowboy or the a sociopath given to lying? Joe may never know or be able to help him find his true identity.
The Manufactured Identity by Heath Sommner was an interesting read that had me guessing. It was confusing, winding, and ultimately destructive journey that is weaved by the author. If you enjoy psychological drama, multiple characterizations, and a tale woven between many characters, this book is for you. If your easily confused, try something else. For those of you that give it a try, it is disturbing to find what the human mind is capable of and what it will accept. Very nice entry for this first time author.
I received this book for review from the author. All opinions expressed are my own.