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Entanglements: Tomorrow's Lovers, Families, and Friends

by Sheila Williams | Science Fiction & Fantasy |
ISBN: 9780262539258 Global Overview for this book
Registered by wingGoryDetailswing of Nashua, New Hampshire USA on 12/6/2023
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2 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by wingGoryDetailswing from Nashua, New Hampshire USA on Wednesday, December 6, 2023
I got this softcover at a local Savers thrift shop. It's a SF anthology inspired by "today's emerging technologies" as the effecct relationships, whether familial, romantic, or otherwise, and comes from the MIT Press. Among my favorites:

"Sparklybits" by Nick Wolven has a multi-partner family/cooperative - some with romantic relationships with each other, some not - who are concerned that their child is not developing properly, spending too much time making up his own languages with the household AI he calls "Sparklybits".

"A Little Wisdom" by Mary Robinette Kowal, which postulates a near-future in which AI-driven support-bots can not only help people navigate the world but can also help comfort strangers sheltering from a tornado - in the basement of a museum, yet. Surprisingly charming, and making me tear up several times; really lovely!

"Your Boyfriend Experience" by James Patrick Kelly, about an advanced-AI "playmate" is introduced to a man by his tech-whiz boyfriend - with some interesting and unexpected shifts in the relationship dynamic. (I've enjoyed other stories by Kelly, and this one tells me he's definitely an author to watch.)

"Mediation" by Cadwell Turnbull is a simple but effective tale of a grieving family; this one doesn't need futuristic technology to work, but there is an element of same that provides a much-needed nudge to bring them together.

"Don't Mind Me" by Suzanne Palmer presents a classroom of kids most of whom have had "minders" implanted in their heads - a technology that effectively deletes certain keywords and concepts from their memories. Effectively, parental-controlled censorship in real time... yeah, pretty scary. In the story, a few kids have figured out how to circumvent the devices without their parents figuring it out, and they start their own little rebellion. [Given the state of school-library censorship that's going on in much of the US now, this one's all too apt.]

"The Monogamy Hormone" by Annalee Newitz is an amusing tale of a woman who's been happily dating a woman and a man at the same time - with both of her lovers aware of the other. She worries that she's not going to be able to pick one when it's time to settle down, and when a friend suggests that she's polyamorous, she replies that she doesn't think it would work for her. "It seems creepy. Plus I hate combining Greek and Latin words." {snerk!} All this came about during a discussion of a new medication, the "monogamy hormone" of the title, which supposedly makes people attracted only to one person. Is it just the placebo effect? Does it do anything at all? Our heroine decides to try it anyway, and finds - well, I won't spoil it, but the result was quite lovely all around. [Side note: part of the story involves her work, painting the walls of nurseries and elementary schools with special bacteria-laced coatings, so that when the kids lick the walls (!) they'll get a healthy dose of balanced friendly bacteria!]

And there are more good stories here - quite a satisfying anthology.

Journal Entry 2 by wingGoryDetailswing at Nashua, New Hampshire USA on Friday, February 23, 2024

Released 1 mo ago (2/23/2024 UTC) at Nashua, New Hampshire USA


I'm adding this book to the To the Stars: A Science Fiction Bookbox 3.0, which will be on its way to its next stop soon. Hope everyone enjoys the selection!

** Released for the 2024 Science Fiction challenge. **

Journal Entry 3 by wingjudygreeneyeswing at San Diego, California USA on Wednesday, March 13, 2024
Yay! I pulled this book from the "To The Stars" spaceship when it landed at my house!

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