June 6th, 2006

books

happy release day to Syne

Now available in stores near you: Syne Mitchell's The Last Mortal Man

From Publishers Weekly Starred Review. This enthralling science fiction thriller focuses on advances in nanotechnology that have irrevocably transformed every aspect of the not-so-distant future, remaking entire cities and eradicating death and disease for those with sufficient wealth. In Elysium, a nanotech-built island fortress, Jack, the great-great grandson of nanotech trillionaire Lucius Sterling, finds himself shut out of immortality because of a deathly allergy to the nanobiology that converts mortal men to Deathless. After 10 years of quarantine, Jack escapes to one of the few places on Earth untouched by the advances: a Mennonite enclave in Montana. His peaceful life there is disrupted when Lucius calls him back to Elysium in desperation: a mysterious cloud of particles capable of destroying any nanotech person, place or thing they come in contact with—a "dissembler"—threatens to destroy the fabric of the modern world, and Jack may be the only person who can stop it. Mitchell establishes a realistic future evolved logically from our present, giving her themes—mankind's "right" to immortality, capitalist control of scientific advancements, the slippery nature of progress—the weight of believability. Her characters are exceptionally well-drawn, and her philosophizing is skillfully balanced against the unfolding action. This book is the first in a series that should prove fascinating.