Riven's Path

Isadora Deese

Riven’s Path, the thrilling sequel to 2016's Right of Capture, starts with the divide between Roan and Judge greater than ever.
Parents gone, they choose to take different paths—Roan forward, Judge back. Judge follows a trail of breadcrumbs to a reclusive physicist whose theories on the structure of the universe give Judge hope he can undo what he’s done. On the run from Dimond, Roan finds herself the unwitting star of a traveling road show. Judge and Roan discover new instincts—and new horrors—from the poisoned hollers of Pennsylvania and the beleaguered Cuyahoga River to the endangered Reelfoot Lake in Tennessee and Iowa farms infested by superweeds. The freedom to explore their powers along the way locks Roan and Judge into a dangerous arms race, creating shock waves that could either save our planet, or give it the final shove over the edge.

“I consumed Riven’s Path in one fervid sitting. I daresay I forgot to blink. Deese masterfully turns up the volume on cutting-edge biotechnology, blending it with social commentary to craft a richly imagined, riveting, and troubling vision of a future that may already be in the making. The result is a thrilling and absorbing novel that poses profound questions and pulsates with life. Riven’s Path forges a new direction in biopunk speculative fiction, comfortably wedging itself onto bookshelves between the works of Greg Bear and Paolo Bacigalupi.” Sophia Roosth, author of Synthetic: How Life Got Made

“Isadora Deese blends the inner and outer journeys of her protagonists with some imaginary implications of 21st century life sciences. Riven’s Path is a sequence of adventures involving mysterious and anomalous gateways between worlds. Deese compounds these adventures with unrelenting struggles between power and conscience and the sort of conflicts and consequences that have always attended the quest for knowledge.” Joe Davis, Artist Scientist at Harvard Medical School/George Church Laboratory

A native of Kentucky, Isadora Deese is a graduate of Indiana University and Boston University Master’s Playwriting Program. Her writing explores the evolving connections between technology, art, and nature that are shaping our near future.
Isadora helped coordinate some of the first iGEM (International Genetically Engineered Machine) competitions at MIT. She co-wrote Adventures in Synthetic Biology with Drew Endy and the Synthetic Biology Working Group, illustrated by Chuck Wadey, which in 2005, was the first comic to be on the cover of Nature. Two parts of The Roan and Judge Quintet have been released, Right of Capture (2016) and Riven's Path (2018).
She is married to writer and historian R.S. Deese. They live in the Boston area with their three sons and two cats.