New York Times: Long ago, as one character explains early in Nicky Drayden’s THE PREY OF GODS, the human race was fathered by a god who gave unique powers to each of his children. Though human beings have lost these abilities over the generations since, they remain present in mitochondrial DNA, latent except in a few rare individuals. And except in those humans whose latent DNA has been awakened — which a new street drug called godsend just happens to be able to do.
This is the mytho-scientific premise underlying a madcap, rapid-fire tale of South Africa in the year 2064, where a handful of individuals are suddenly plagued by godhood. One, Nomvula, is a lonely little township girl born with power. Several others acquire their abilities from godsend, to varying degrees of trauma or delight…As a genetically engineered virus spreads and threatens to awaken the latent godhood of billions, these few special individuals come together to decide, ultimately, what manner of gods will rule the future. Oh — and also, the technological apocalypse looms as personal robots all over the world quietly become self-aware.
Drayden’s delivery of all this is subtly poignant and slap-in-the-face deadpan – perfect for this novel-length thought exercise about what kinds of gods a cynical, self-absorbed postmodern society really deserves. Lots of fun.