Engines of Oblivion

Tor. (The Memory War, Bk. 2). Feb. 2021. 416p. ISBN 9781250215505. pap. $17.99. SF
Natalie Chan has finally achieved her greatest desire: corporate citizenship. It came at the cost of her crew, her friends, and almost her own life during the battle on Tribulation. Now with memory damage after that battle, she still works for Aurora and soon discovers she cannot leave her past behind. Her brain contains secrets that would give Aurora the power to turn the tide in the war against the Vai, and they will do anything to have it. Natalie must team up with an untrustworthy partner and discover a way to protect the truth from the ones who will exploit it for their own benefit. Natalie is a wonderfully gray character and this novel gives her an emotionally rich and deep growth arc. Calls back to characters in the last book tie together some of the looser ends, and the ending twist is unique and satisfying.
VERDICT Osborne’s follow-up to Architects of Memory is a solid story of corporate control versus personhood, alien encounters, and doing what is right as opposed to what is easy.
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