The Modified Blueprint (Unexpected Inlander #2)
The Modified Blueprint was published on February 7th, 2021 as the sequel to The Unexpected Inlander. I received a copy from the author, but as always, all thoughts are my own.
Content Warning: mild violence, mentions of blood, classism
Having achieved the highest status in the agency, Chris is settling into his new position as a boss when one of his agents discovers an item for sale on the black market. She believes it is called the “Cipher” and that it is highly sought after by the opposition.
When Chris proposes opening a new mission to retrieve this “Cipher” before it reaches the enemy, the agency suggests a plan that will put his new position of authority—and his marriage—to the test.
With only days to prepare, he is sent back into the field to work undercover in one of the ominous Purebred Communities. Once inside, he quickly learns that the official reports were misleading and that the Community is far more dangerous than he had been led to believe.
Fortunately, his extensive training and experience has already prepared him for the unexpected. He is prepared for the unknown and prepared to find the Cipher.
But nothing can prepare him for the truth.
Note: In my review of The Unexpected Inlander (Book #1), I describe the story/world parameters in detail. I have not done that below, so if you are interested in learning more about the world, click here.
Author Kellyn Thompson starts off with action and high stakes in The Modified Blueprint, the sequel to The Unexpected Inlander. Once again, the quick pace moves the story along and has the reader anticipating what’s to come. Amidst the dangerous mission, secrets, and potential threats of both government and “outsider” forces, there’s hope in the form of the devotion our two main characters have for each other.
The plot of The Modified Blueprint more deeply explores the functions of the government and society that Kellyn Thompson has created. There’s quite a bit of information given to the reader – especially at the beginning – that could have felt a little overwhelming. But the author has an appealing matter-of-fact tone that stays consistent throughout the book, and makes the paragraphs of details pleasantly flow with the narrative; these sections inform the reader without feeling like an encyclopedia entry.
This matter-of-fact, straightforward tone continues into the dialogue and internal reflections between and of the characters. This is not to say everyone has everything sorted, but it’s refreshing to read about confident characters who are honest (to themselves and to close loved ones) about not having everything figured out. Although Cam and Chris do hold one or two secrets close to their chests, the way they confide in each other about everything else makes it feel like those secrets are held not to be deceptive, but to temporarily shield the other from the unknown in order to prevent potentially unnecessary panic. Every step of the way, the author shows how devoted they are to each other, and while they may be surrounded by veiled truths and insincerity, they don’t hide themselves from each other.
Each event in The Modified Blueprint holds and enhances the reader’s attention, from the new mission assignment and undercover interactions, to the sweet banter between Chris and Cam. Even the conclusion added more complexity to the characters’ situations by giving answers that led to more questions – which has this reader hoping for a third installment. Pick up The Unexpected Inlander and launch right into The Modified Blueprint – you’re sure to to be enthralled by Kellyn Thompson’s writing too.