A REMEDY FOR DEATH A Visionary Science Technothriller: Playing God with body, soul, and biotech
They say we only go around once in life . . . at least that's the way it's always been. But what if? What if the terms of life have changed . . . for an elite few?
ENTRAPMENT Chicago: On the night his wife and young daughter are kidnaped and murdered, Dr. Doug Daulby, a neuroscience researcher, is caught performing an unauthorized illegal experiment- implanting human fetal tissue into the brain of a chimp to begin exploring how it may develop human verbal abilities.
The scandal costs him posts as a surgeon and neuroscience researcher at the university hospital.
San Diego: The twin sister of Kate Remington, Ph.D., a psychologist with a controversial approach to Multiple Personality Disorder / Dissociative Identity Disorder (MPD), is mugged and left in a permanent coma. Kate's ideas on mind and MPD are too radical for the university, and she loses her grant . . . along with her job and insurance for her sister.
"Your ideas," she is told in an exit interview, "are merely metaphysical, not scientific. You raise questions that the media would be delighted to pounce upon, and that would be uncomfortable for the university."
CONSPIRACY The promise of a chance to start over "in a state-of-the-art lab dedicated to cutting-edge bio-science and mind-science research" lures Daulby and Remington to a clinic in the mountains of central Europe. But once there, they find the reality is very different from what they were told.
Worse, they are trapped there, with no way out. "We're caught in a bizarre world like something out of a Michael Crichton science technothriller!" Kate says.
They realize, too late, that a conspiracy of the elite, a secretive cabal of the rich, powerful and politically-connected, is funding an analogue to Michael Crichton's JURASSIC PARK . . . to recreate themselves, and hence gain the chance to go around again in life, as one of them put it, in "healthy, horny 21-year old bodies complete with all our accumulated savvy from this lifetime."
DOORS THAT CANNOT BE CLOSED The work offers the promise of Frankenstein and eternal youth in the era of bio-tech, tissue engineering, cutting-edge mind and neuroscience research, explorations of the line between mind and brain, cloning, regenerative medicine, and a branch of bio-science beyond cloning.
But there are ethical costs . . . and risks when they find that the project is almost successful . . .but opens dangerous doors . . . doors to other dimensions that cannot be closed once opened.
"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.
A REMEDY FOR DEATH
A technothriller: Playing God with body, soul, and bio-tech
Jurassic Park crossed with Ghost and Frankenstein . . . in the age of bio-tech.
They say we only go around once in life . But what if the terms of life have changed . . . for an elite few?
On the night Jackie and Jenny, his wife and young daughter, are kidnapped and murdered, Dr. Doug Daulby, a neuroscience researcher, is caught performing an unauthorized illegal experiment-implanting human fetal tissue into the brain of a chimp to begin exploring how it may develop human verbal abilities.
His life and career shattered, the offer of a short-term contract lures him to a spooky clinic in what turns out to be a dictatorship in the mountains of central Europe. Once there, he is trapped, with no way out.
Worse, he finds that the clinic is, as one puts it, "a Jurassic Park for rich old guys who want to come back into healthy, horny 21-year old bodies complete with all our accumulated savvy from this lifetime". The work offers the promise of Frankenstein and eternal youth in the era of bio-tech.
It's clear to Dr. Daulby that the work is opening dangerous doors to other worlds, scientific and mental . . . doors that, once opened, cannot be closed.
Yet he is torn by an awful choice: If he does what they ask of him, can they really keep the promise of giving new life to his lost family? But, if so, with what consequences?
You're a lawyer by background. Everyone loves lawyers, as we all know, so why did you leave that profession? I practiced in New York and some in Virginia, but increasingly realized I didn't want to spend my life fighting other peoples' Zero-sum games. So I tried management consulting and found my niche: it gave me the variety to tap in on all sorts of organizations, in government and industry, and to work with people of all sorts, at all levels. My consulting, in a nutshell, was about finding way of making things tick . . . and tick better.
Was there one event that triggered your idea for the technothriller A REMEDY FOR DEATH? Yes, but I can't explain it, and have no idea where the insight came from. I was crossing the Potomac on the Point of Rocks Bridge, coming from Virginia to Maryland. An image popped into my mind at the start, and by the time I made to the other side in about 30 second the core of the story was there. Over the remaining 400 miles or so, the rest of the story and characters fleshed out in my mind. I still think of that every time I cross the Potomac.
From that point, how did A REMEDY FOR DEATH take shape? I figured that now that I knew the story and the characters, all I needed was to read up on a few areas to make the plot accord with real-world medicine. Well, those "few areas" kept growing and changing as the worlds of science and bio-tech developed. I think it's fair to say that some of these fields didn't even have names when I started.
What are some of those fields relevant to the book? To mention a few: Tissue engineering; organ regeneration; transgenics; human-animal chimeras; the use of stem cells from humans and other species; cloning; medical ethics; Multiple-Personality Disorder or MPD (also known more now as Dissociative Identity Disorder or DID); hyperbaric oxygen therapy; the human mind-- what and where it is; Near Death Experiences (NDE) and Out of Body Experiences (OBE). Even- something really new - using special 3D printers to churn out replacement human organs. Other methods of developing bio-artificial organs are now in lab trials; some are even becoming available for human patients, including tracheas, ears and noses, bladders, even kidneys, livers, and perhaps before too long, hearts - all developed from the patient's own cells, so there will be no problem with rejection.
A REMEDY FOR DEATH is finished, but I'm fascinated by what's happening in these fields, and post a lot of the new stuff on the online blog I still keep for that book.
So to write A REMEDY FOR DEATH you had to, in a very real sense, keep up with science that was still to come? "Keep up" is not really the word. It seems I kept too far ahead! A few years back, my very good agent at the time sent an early draft to several mainstream New York-based publishers. My favorite rejection letter of all time came from one who said (I don't have a copy at hand) "this is too far out to be plausible, nobody would ever believe it". My "keeping up" with the research put me too far ahead, apparently. But that's the lot when you write technothrillers or science fiction: to stay ahead of plodding current reality!
Within the past few weeks, the W all Street Journal, New York Times, and Fortune have all run major stories in these areas. The Journal's was headlined "Science fiction comes alive as researchers grow organs in labs," and on the Fortune blog was, "How would you like to invest in immortality?" Breaking news! But already old news in A REMEDY FOR DEATH. (Alas, none of those articles plugged my book.)
Incidentally, my original title was THE LIFE AFTER LIFE CONSPIRACY (to tie in with my other technothriller, THE GRAIL CONSPIRACIES). For a variety of reasons, I moved away from the "life after life" concept, and just as well I did, as both Kate Atkinson and Jill McCorkle have each just published books entitled " LIFE AFTER LIFE: A Novel."
In one of your blogs, I came on the headline quoted from a news story: "How human beings can now be rebuilt from top to toe with artificial parts" Care to comment on that topic? That article I mentioned is a couple of years old now, and in a sense something like that has now been done. I'm speaking of Rex, the bionic man now on display at a museum in London. So, yes, many human replacement parts are available, more each month. But to build a total human? "They" haven't come up with the answer yet. They're leaving out one central, crucial, key element.
And what crucial element is that? It's the core of the book idea that started on that bridge over the Potomac, and is now the core idea of A REMEDY FOR DEATH. Which is a book I highly recommend!
"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.
Book Description Champlain House Media. Book Condition: New. Worldwide shipping. FREE fast shipping inside USA (express 2-day delivery also available). Tracking service included. Ships from United States of America. Bookseller Inventory # 0976840685
Book Description Champlain House Media, 2013. Paperback. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M0976840685
Book Description Champlain House Media, 2013. Paperback. Book Condition: Brand New. 274 pages. 9.00x6.00x0.62 inches. In Stock. Bookseller Inventory # zk0976840685