The year is 3289 and although man hasn’t quite achieved immortality, he’s a fair way down the road, with the use of the Stasis Deep Sleep System, invented and marketed by LaPorte Industries, which allows people to survive for aeons. With a new body and a new consciousness, participants in the scheme are able to travel to the perfectly rendered, fake town of Penticton, where they can live a new life until they again get bored, at which time, they can then just start all over again. In A Place to Stay Forever, author Mark L Lloyd takes us inside his vivid imagination, as he posits where mankind may be heading. La Porte Industries are notoriously secretive about their product and the experience is bound by an unbreakable set of rules, which participants breach at their peril. When Miranda Sage and the crew of the Misfit are woken from Stasis Deep Sleep (SDS) after something hits their spacecraft, they discover an anomaly in the SDS system, which Adayln a crew member is determined to explore and discover what secrets LaPorte Industries are hiding from them all. With Miranda and Emily, a reporter, they find themselves travelling back in time to the Penticton of 2005. It appears they have opened a veritable Pandora’s Box.
A Place to Stay Forever is unlike any science fiction book I have read before. The premise is intriguing and author Mark L Lloyd keeps the reader continually thinking and wondering about the science and the adventure these characters are on. The whole time-travel and time-travel paradox problem becomes an issue for the adventurers, but is well handled by the author. The characters are well drawn and although initially I found myself confused over who was who in this storyline, it soon became apparent, as the story unravelled. I appreciate the author didn’t allow gender to be an issue for the characters with all of them seemingly having been both male and female in one of their iterations of Stasis Deep Sleep. I felt the plot and the science mechanisms employed in the story made it difficult to keep the story at the level of the layman, but Lloyd was able to do so, which I was grateful for. This story was possibly a bit deep in imagination and science fiction for my usual tastes, but the emotional depth of the characters and their relationships made it very readable and enjoyable for me. I can definitely recommend this as a read for anyone who wonders what the future may potentially hold.