Mark II

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Chris Farnell
Tindal Street Press
May 2006
�The clone wasn�t stupid, but he didn�t know the rules, and I had a horrible feeling I knew who would be teaching him.�

New technologies have stretched further still the enigma of The Ship of Theseus, which has puzzled philosophers for centuries� What if Theseus himself were to be recreated atom, by atom and his memories replicated? How would we discern the �true� Theseus? Taking cloning as its preserve, this is a question that runs central to �Mark II�,

Suffering from a degenerative illness, Mark is dying. Understandably his family have difficulty coming to terms with the imminent loss of their son, so it is that they approach Laz-R-Us, a company who are not only able to recreate loved ones, but also to replicate the basic memories believed to have structured that person�s character using a patented system known as Kwik-Learn.

Advances in modern day science and technologies have posed new ethical dilemmas for society. �Mark II� is very much a tale of our time, it challenges concepts of individuality, of love, memory, learning, mortality, commercial profiteering and Godly irreverence.

Poignant and moving, it is impossible not to feel combined pathos and empathy for Mark�s clone who, in outward appearance and expectations, is the equal of the deceased Mark. This, however, is discordant with the low levels of understanding and comprehension that Mark holds for the world that surrounds him, and it is Phil�s endeavours to teach the clone of his best friend worldly-wisdom, whilst at once simultaneously grieving the loss of his best friend per-se, that form the novel�s most powerful and memorable sequences.

It is friendship and its depiction that are the lynch-pins of this novel, its ending forces consideration as to whether Mark�s clone has been assimilated into the person whom Mark was held to be, or whether his future is made free by the friendship he is able to continue with Phil� Highly gripping, highly thought-provoking and highly contemporary in both theme and approach this is definitely one to watch!

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This page contains a single entry by Jacob published on May 16, 2006 7:33 AM.

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