In 1988, Benjamin Franklin Smith suffers a massive coronary and is placed into cryonic suspension, igniting a storm of controversy among his suspicious relatives. In 2072, on his 147th birthday, he is reanimated by his great-grandson, rejoining a world in which such procedures--along with eugenic selection, virtual reality, and nanotechnology--have become commonplace. Ben's friends, children, grandchildren ,and mother are also given second chances in this brave new world; technology has even made it possible for Ben to have his dead wife cloned as an infant, raised by their son (also frozen and revived) to an adulthood in which she marries him again.|
If this sounds a bit bewildering and overwhelming, it is, but it's also fascinating and often has the ring of genuine prediction. As in Halperin's first novel, The Truth Machine, the technology is always front and center, but this is ultimately a story of people and the political and sociological implications of near immortality.