|Date Published||20 September 2018|
The Memory Chamber
In the not-too-distant future architects can design a heaven specifically for you but there are regulations and controls. Isobel is not supposed to fall in love with her client, and the implications when his wife is murdered are destructive.
Isobel is an exceptionally talented Heaven Architect. She follows the rules and regulations meticulously until she meets Jarek, who is slowly dying from a brain tumour. Having an affair is bad enough in itself, but when Jarek’s wife is found murdered then the authorities pressurise Isobel into entering her clients’ Heaven to try to solve this crime, a pioneering procedure that is fraught with difficulties.
Isobel becomes embroiled in a spiralling sequence of events that have life-changing implications for her and for all those who know or are associated with her. She is pursued by the calm and enigmatic Daniel, a law enforcement officer whose motives are unclear. It is not clear whether he supports Isobel, is infatuated with her or is merely determined to solve a crime at all costs.
When I started to read The Memory Chamber I felt that it was not what I expected. It felt like a light romance story. I am glad that I stuck with it, though. The concept of the created Heavens is explored in many ways, scientifically, economically and ethically and this forms the backbone to the story and the way the characters are affected. As the book progresses the main protagonists become well fleshed out, with layers of emotions and secrets that gradually become apparent.
Reviewed 13 October 2018 by John Barnbrook