Monday, December 23, 2013

Memes of Loss and Devotion

Memes of Loss and Devotion by Darren White
Amazon Digital Services, 10/2/13
eBook or paperback, 221 pages 

ISBN: 1492875023


Memes of Loss and Devotion" is a science fiction and horror short story collection. It examines the human condition, our possible futures, our challenges as a species and our failings as sentient, supposedly intelligent beings.
Journey to a far future where all human minds are connected not only to each other but also to benevolent Artificial Intelligences. Technology may have changed, but the human condition has not, and neither has the human heart.
A not so random encounter in a hotel bar triggers unforeseen consequences, but just who is the hunter and who is the prey? If you thought that romance in the early 21st century is a minefield, just add advanced technology and see how much more dangerous it can get.
Can love survive death? What happens when devotion unexpectedly returns from beyond the grave? A doomed love triangle is destined to end in disaster in a haunting story of passion that can never be reciprocated.
What if men were obsolete? What if new technology meant that the human race could continue without them? How far would you go to prevent this?
Finally, a gun-toting, resourceful hero will get the girl, kill the baddies, and save the entire planet, probably...
In this collection, you will also witness a little girl arguing colonization morals with an elderly alien, while another girl will be 'fixed' by time travelling angels. An astronaut will be rescued (eventually) while another never will be. A deadly connection will be made. A private investigator will lose important parts of his memory on a distant moon. A future colonist never get his girl. A time machine will be abused. An alien observer will be lost. A sister's sister will find her true home.
Just where might future technology take us if we are not mindful of the unintentional consequences?
What will we get? The future we want, or the future we deserve?

My Thoughts:

Memes of Loss and Devotion by Darren White is a collection of 15 short stories and an excerpt from his upcoming book. All of the stories are primarily science fiction/speculative fiction, although a couple also venture toward horror. White manages to infuse his stories with some timeless themes that explore the human condition and pack an immediate visceral reaction. White does an exceptional job of capturing the emotion or condition he wants to explore in the short story format, which is a notable accomplishment. 

White also faces clearly the struggle we have or soon will have with technology integrating into our very bodies, begging the question: Will future technology change what it means to be human or does humanity remain the same even when augmented?

I really enjoyed the majority of the short stories included in this collection (with a few exceptions). All in all I would highly recommend it for those interested in science fiction short story collections. Please note that the Amazon Kindle price is only 2.99 as of this review date, so it's a great bargain too.


Hope: "In the far future, a man returns to his former home to retrieve the woman he loves."

Seduction Games: "A supposedly random encounter in a hotel leads to romance, but is there more going on here than there first seems?"

Soul Destroying: "A ghost story of a love returning from the grave."

Ethnomethodology: "A little girl discusses colonization morals with an elderly alien, whose planet we now share."
Sub Rosa: A young girl’s visions of angels coincide with her parent’s separation.""
Every Silver Lining Has A Cloud: "A lone crew member on a stranded star ship longs for rescue. When he spots another ship he believes that against all hope his dreams have come true."
Connections: "An ordinary life lived against a backdrop of a sinister spate of murders…"
All In The Mind: "A futuristic private investigator is hired to uncover the truth behind a team of researchers who have failed to produce a working faster than light space ship drive".
Spoilt for Choice: "A man with a tragic past hides a dark secret life."
Participant Observation: "A man struggles to come to terms with overwhelming loss. He’s not helped by the unsettling dreams that eventually protrude into his reality."
Life Chances: "For a brave, hardy colonist, there’s a less than ideal outcome to a ‘suspended animation’ voyage to a distant star."
False Positive: "Following the brutal murder of his ex-girlfriend and her new love, the prime suspect produces the perfect alibi."
Ourselves Alone: "A twin, or is she a triplet, comes to terms with a seething sibling rivalry that threatens everything and everyone."
22T: "A scientist has been taken hostage by a man determined to halt her research into human reproduction without the need for men."
Death Ship: "A one man killing machine protects the woman he loves from a hoard of aliens on board a giant star ship bound for the stars. Or does he?"
Plus an excerpt from the book The Fomalhaut Plague due to be released in 2014 which was based off his short story "Every Silver Lining Has A Cloud" which is included in this collection.

Darren White's website for more information and anecdotal notes about each story.

Disclosure: Darren White sent me a copy of this book for

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