Architects of Memory by Karen Osborne
Series: The memory war #1
Format: ARC provided by Tor Books
Top 3 Genres: Science Fiction, Thriller, LGBTQIA
My rating: Set it on fire/ If you have nothing else to read/ you need to read it/Run and buy it.
To buy the book: CA • US • FR• Bookdep
Add to: Goodreads
Hey everyone! Want to take a little trip to space? Well, the world of Architects of Memory may not be the best choice for a safe travel, but if you are content to visit it through the pages, you may be captivated by the journey! And happy birthday to this book that just came out today!
Terminally ill salvage pilot Ash Jackson lost everything in the war with the alien Vai, but she’ll be damned if she loses her future. Her plan: to buy, beg, or lie her way out of corporate indenture and find a cure.
When her crew salvages a genocidal weapon from a ravaged starship above a dead colony, Ash uncovers a conspiracy of corporate intrigue and betrayal that threatens to turn her into a living weapon.
What is new under the stars?
Welcome to a world where your have to earn your life, literally. You start with a debt you have to pay, by working in the worst conditions, in the hope that maybe you will be able to earn citizenship and have a more decent life. Problem is, in these years you work so hard, you have high chances to also catch a deadly disease. So…. citizenship is pretty far away. And this is why Ash is ready to do pretty much anything to secure hers, even hiding how ill she already is to her crew.
She got the chance of her life: to move her indenture from mine work to scavenging spaceships. She even made friends (and more) with her little team, and they might now be working on a big recovery that would bring citizenship so much closer for Ash.
That is, until she gets in contact with a mysterious alien item belonging to the Vai, the enemy of the human race in space, with who we are in war for years, a very deadly war. So having the chance to study this weapon could change the tide of the war, and Ash and her team are in charge of its safe recovery. That is when everything goes South, as Ash and some teammates are affected by the weapon who seems to play with their memory and mental sanity. Ash hears more and more voices and visions, that she tries to hide. She does things she is not supposed to be able to do, and it starts to appear that it is all connected to this mysterious artefact… that a lot of people want!
Betrayals, manipulations, scientific experiments, new truths on what the Vai really are and how Ash is so affected by a disease that should have been dormant for years.. that’s what you can expect from this book! We follow a confused Ash trying to understand what is going on, and to survive! But the discoveries at the end of the road are shocking, and will share her view of the world. Everytime, we thought we had something figured out, a new element came to make us question what was happening, until finally all the dots connect. And as a reader, it’s always good to be surprised! If some things were more expected from a scifi novel, like the alien-human wars and that of course it’s not as simple as it seems, I thought that the author really brought interesting ideas on the table as of who are the Vai.
I am far from an expert in thrillers or sci-fi, so I may not have much to compare this book to, but I thought it was really a modern scifi, from what we learn on the Vai, from how the society is built, but also from the inclusion of queer characters as something normal. (for example Ash is bi, and it’s not questioned or anything in the book, it’s just a part of her, we also have mention of a non-binary character). The ending was also pretty original and intriguing, and it was wrapping up the story well (which is interesting as this seems like the first book in a series) and in a quite heartbreaking way, but I can’t really tell you more without spoilers haha!
In a few words
If I was a bit lost at time with all the vocabulary in this book, I was still hooked on how it was build around the idea of companies owning people and being at wars, showing us the evolution of capitalism. Add to that uncovering alien secrets, and a really good and modernly thought MC, and you’ll have a new scifi thriller to add to your shelves!
See you for a cup