The Memory Librarian: And Other Stories of Dirty Computer

HarperAudio. Apr. 2022. 12:11 hrs. ISBN 9780063070905. $26.99. SF
Singer-songwriter Monáe narrates her anthology that expands on the universe she created in her Dirty Computer album. She collaborated with other science fiction writers—Yohanca Delgado, Eve L. Ewing, Alaya Dawn Johnson, Danny Lore, and Sheree Renée Thomas—to write the overarching story about the rise of the totalitarian regime, New Dawn, in its search for Dirty Computers, deviant thinkers in need of New Dawn’s corrections. Monáe’s narration paints a bleak yet vivid world, while Bahni Turpin voices the many who seek the strength to stand up to New Dawn and their ideals. This collection celebrates those Dirty Computers’s fight for individuality in a world where memories can be adjusted, decimated, and used as capital. These bold, innovative stories use magical realism to tackle themes like the value of memories, the scarcity of time, and the celebration of differences, particularly as it pertains to the LGBTQ community.
VERDICT This is no mere, dark reflection of the world. This audiobook offers the listener stories with the timely and timeless message that appears repeatedly in great science fiction: the world may seem dark now, but everyone can strive to make the future better.
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