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Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Close reading of "Future Memories Market" by Nina Kiriki Hoffman

Originally appeared in Clarkesworld
Reprinted in Hartwell's Year's Best SF

Geeta gives people memories, experiences not their own.  The memories are always fresh and experience strange worlds as if the worlds love her.  Her memories are so child-like because her memories are extracted before visiting any new worlds.  Although another beat follows, the story ends on a bittersweet kiss before Geeta's memory is lost.  Geeta will never remember all of the kisses she's given the narrator.

This is a good metaphor for how Nina Kiriki Hoffman's fiction impacts its readers.  Not that Ms, Hoffman has her memory erased after every story (although she is rather pleasant to be around--I met her at Wiscon), but that this could be--intentionally or not--a metaphor for how she works:  Moving the reader to a new world, even if the situation is unpleasant, her characters often work to make the best of a bad circumstance.

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