On the eve of a secret military operation, an assassin's bullet strikes President Seth Jerrison. He is rushed to the hospital, where surgeons struggle to save his life.
At the same hospital, researcher Dr. Ranjip Singh is experimenting with a device that can erase traumatic memories.
Then a terrorist bomb detonates. In the operating room, the president suffers cardiac arrest. He has a near-death experience-but the memories that flash through Jerrison's mind are not his memories.
It quickly becomes clear that the electromagnetic pulse generated by the bomb amplified and scrambled Dr. Singh's equipment, allowing a random group of people to access one another's minds.
And now one of those people has access to the president's memories- including classified information regarding the upcoming military mission, which, if revealed, could cost countless lives. But the task of determining who has switched memories with whom is a daunting one- particularly when some of the people involved have reason to lie...
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LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - LibraryThing
This book was serialized in Analog magazine and I read the first installment in the January-February 2012 magazine. I was hooked and didn’t think I could wait to read it in the ensuing magazines especially since I didn’t have a subscription and was accessing them at the library. Then I found out that Sawyer was coming to Winnipeg to publicize the book and I realized it would be a great present for my sister’s birthday. So the copy I just finished reading is inscribed “For Peggy with all best wishes. HAPPY BIRTHDAY! “and signed by the author. Of course I knew that by buying it for my sister I would get to read it later. She and I share a similar taste in literature, especially science fiction. This book takes place in the US but one of the main characters is Canadian and there are lots of references to Canada. Ranjip Singh is a memory researcher and he thinks he can help an American veteran who fought in Iraq who is experiencing severe flashbacks. He is trying out a new procedure in Luther Terry Hospital in Washington in November. It happens to be the same day that the President is shot while giving a speech in front of the Lincoln Memorial. The President is also rushed to Luther Terry Hospital and is operated on just down the hall from Dr. Singh’s apparatus. At the same time a bomb on the roof of the White House goes off, destroying the President’s residence and sending out an electromagnetic pulse. This pulse causes the apparatus’s effective radius to expand including the operating room and some other rooms on the floors above and below. Anyone within the sphere is linked to one other person in the sphere and can access their memories. So, the President is linked to Dr. Singh’s patient, his Secret Service bodyguard is linked to Dr. Singh, the surgeon operating on the President is linked to a nurse outside of the OR and so on. In all 21 people are affected and one person can now access the President’s memories. Since the President has sanctioned a counter-terrorism offensive called Counterpunch which is going to take place in a few days, this presents a problem. Especially when it is discovered that the person who can access his memories is an elderly woman who managed to leave the hospital before it was locked down. Learning the most intimate memories of another person affects each person differently but the change is profound. For instance, the President can experience firsthand the horror of war through the memories of the young private being treated by Dr. Singh. A janitor is linked to the daughter of a man who needs a kidney transplant and who agreed to donate one of her kidneys even though she had been estranged from him for 30 years. However, the janitor can access her early memories that even she has forgotten and found out that the father abused the daughter sexually. He is so distraught by the memories that he experiences that he confronts the man. Think about what someone else would learn if they had complete access to your memories and then think about what you might learn about someone else. It’s truly mind-boggling. I don’t think I’m giving away much when I say that everything works out well in the end. I rather like the imaginative finale and, not for the first time, I wish this wasn’t fiction. Great read too.
Review: TriggersUser Review - Goodreads
This book has all the trademarks of a Sawyer novel: a very plausible premise, great characters across a wide spectrum, and a fast-paced plot. I especially Iike the way he addresses the pros and cons ...