“Extreme Makeover” Review

Warning: If you have not read “Extreme Makeover” by Dan Wells, do not read this review unless you don’t mind spoilers.

I’m back with another book review, and this time I’m looking at “Extreme Makeover” by Dan Wells! Here’s a summary so we know what it’s about:

The satirical new suspense about a health and beauty company that accidentally develops a hand lotion that can overwrite your DNA.

Lyle Fontanelle is the chief scientist for NewYew, a health and beauty company experimenting with a new, anti-aging hand lotion. As more and more anomalies crop up in testing, Lyle realizes that the lotion’s formula has somehow gone horribly wrong. It is actively overwriting the DNA of anyone who uses it, turning them into physical clones of someone else. Lyle wants to destroy the formula, but NewYew thinks it might be the greatest beauty product ever designed–and the world’s governments think it’s the greatest weapon.

New York Times bestselling author Dan Wells brings us a gripping corporate satire about a health and beauty company that could destroy the world.”

This book got increasingly complicated regarding the plot. At first it was just Lyle and the NewYew Company trying out their beauty cream, but once everyone started turning into multiple Lyles and clones of other people, things get haywire really quickly. This is hilarious to read, but also had a tendency to get slightly confusing as of what the motivations of certain characters were compared to others, so that part was a letdown regarding the plotline.

Speaking of the book being hilarious to read, the comedy content made up for the lack of character development in some of the supporting characters. My favourite scene was when the world leaders got together and were trying to come up with solutions…and none of those solutions are conventional, which makes sense given the unconventional problem as is. Meanwhile, Lyle is increasingly exasperated about the whole situation as he tries (and fails) to fix it multiple times. It doesn’t help that one of the test subjects the cream originally was tried on ended up robbing a bank shortly afterwards.

The way the NewYew employees talk about their customers and how to market the cream to them was interesting to read. It gave me an idea of how companies view their customers—no matter what risk it might have to their livelihoods (and it very much destroyed the world in this case), what mattered the most was making the biggest profit possible off their products. It’s definitely some food for thought, and something I wish they dove into more in the latter half of the book. Then again, they had a rampaging mass amount of people causing havoc everywhere because of the cream they released to the masses, so I don’t blame them for not thinking as philosophically as they did in the first half.

Overall, I rate this book 4 out of 5 stars.

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