Collapsing Our Notions Of A Fixed Cosmic Order

Digital collage includes dinosaur cut from book cover art.
One Very Bad Day In The Cretaceous
Book Review: Living Memory by David Walton

What an unusual and exciting story! Living Memory is well-written, there are a number of appealing characters, especially Prey, and there’s plenty of action. However, it’s the ideas that captured my attention and kept me reading.

Living Memory brought to mind one of the conundrums I often consider when reading science fiction, that if we ever come across communications or computer technology alien from our own species, how will we ever know how to connect with it, much less comprehend it?

If I found an eight-track tape, even if I didn’t have an eight-track player, I’d know what the cassette was and what equipment I’d need to look for to play it. Even a culture we know only from earliest historical writings had as their basis the same basic cultural features we see today. With time and luck, like finding the Rosetta Stone, we’ve gained a rough understanding of what our ancient ancestors were like.

But, they were people, like us. The ability to understand the motivations of beings that are radically different from ourselves biologically and culturally would be a formidable task. David Walton has created a unique work-around for these problems to bring us this book.

The science behind the core premise really challenged me and will be food for thought for some time. I don’t know enough about the fields of study involved to claim that what happens in the book is entirely plausible, but it’s presented believably. It’s a terrifically suspenseful science fiction thriller. I can’t wait for the sequel!

I’d like to thank David Walton and BookSirens for the free advance reader’s copy of Living Memory. My review is given freely, without any sense of obligation. It’s a terrific read.


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