Love in the Time of Fridges
Bantam, Aug 2008, $12.00
After his beloved Abigail died, ex police officer Huckleberry Lindberg left New Seattle and worked in Memory Print Store where he took pictures of other people’s memories. Now he is on his way home where the highway sign reads “Welcome! New Seattle Welcomes Visitors … See Exclusions”. The West Coast of America is run by the Health and Safety Department. He shares a drongle with a woman he does not know when the cops stop him for a routine check. When they learn who he is, they decide to do a mind hack and include the woman Nena too.
Huck gets loose and rescues Neina who hides secrets from him. They separate, but she tells him to meet her at the Halcyon Hotel. There he finds four talking Fridges and a dryer. When Nena arrives, the clerk calls the cops on them. The Fridges and dryer escape, but Nena tells him if something happens to her he is to save the little Fridge because inside is the means to saving New Seattle.
This is classified as a sci fi thriller, but it is more a tongue and cheek satire of government using security to control everyone. The tale is filled with humor often biting especially when the Fridges and Dryer sing out of tune and exchange barbs. Underneath all the jocularity ironically is a serious post 9/11message that to live free means taking risks even when a person wants to run from bad memories to hide inside a secure cocoon.