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Second Read of a Great Author

Memory - Linda Nagata

This is the first book I ever read by Linda Nagata years ago. Since then I've read several her her novels. I love her unique look at worlds and the relationships we have in them. 

 

Memory is about a world with a finite number of inhabitants. These people live, die and are reborn over and over. They don't remember those past lives, but their talents return.

 

Here's the thing. These people have only one lover. It's genetic and even if they fall in love with another they can't even kiss them. The mingling of blood or DNA would give them blood poisoning and they die. How's that for giving a new meaning to soul mates!

 

There's also silver. Something not quite defined, but with lots of speculation as to what it is. My favorite is that it's the "memory of the goddess."

 

You see, the players (the people of the world) know the world was created by the goddess and her lover. They don't remember why. But something has gone wrong. The world is sick, the silver is rising. When it does it remakes all it touches. Players die. And now there is a man who can call the silver. In his anger he's determined to destroy the world and start all over.

 

Jubilee is connected to him in a way she could never guess. In a way she'll never want. However, if she's strong enough she might be able to heal the world. I didn't even get around to mentioning her brother Jolly. He's something new, but you'll have to read to find out what I mean.

 

Nagata creates an intriguing world that works even when you don't know why. There's excitement, mystery, sadness and triumph. The ending is bittersweet, so don't expect a happily ever after.