Aiden Nomura likes to open doors—especially using his skills as a hacker—to see what’s hidden inside. He believes everything is part of a greater system: the universe. The universe shows him the doors, and he keeps pulling until one cracks open. Aiden exposes the flaw, and the universe—or someone else—will fix it. It’s like a game.
Until it isn’t.
When a TFC opens in Bern, Switzerland, where Aiden is attending boarding school, he knows things are changing. Shortly after, bombs go off within quiet, safe Bern. Then Aiden learns that his cousin Winter, back in the States, has had a mental breakdown. He returns to the US immediately.
But when he arrives home in Hamilton, Winter’s mental state isn’t the only thing that’s different. The city is becoming even stricter, and an underground movement is growing.
Along with Winter’s friend, Velvet, Aiden slowly cracks open doors in this new world. But behind those doors are things Aiden doesn’t want to see—things about his society, his city, even his own family. And this time Aiden may be the only one who can fix things . . . before someone else gets hurt.
Children’s Literature wrote:
“Engaging, spirited characters and a plot that can stand on its own…This story could provide great fodder for discussions about the relative roles of government, business and the individual in a world of increasing consolidation and conformity.”
The Horn Book wrote:
The futuristic fantasy Smibert began with Memento Nora (rev. 7/11) continues in this sequel. All citizens of Hamilton, USA, are required to have an ID chip implanted, one to which the corporation Therapeutic Forgetting Clinic, or TFC, will have full access. Aiden, Winter, and Velvet realize that TFC will wipe out true memories and implant false ones—all part of a plot for the suppression of independent thought and industry. The three main characters combine their varied skills in technology old, new, and avant-garde to thwart the corporation’s plot and protect their families. Written in alternating voices, Smibert’s novel is quick and engaging, colorful with its enjoyment of sculpture and mechanics, vintage dress, indie music, and hacker skills. In keeping with its dystopic theme, this second volume offers no comfortable resolution.