In Jon Ingold’s story, Poly-V is a drug that enables people to relive their memories, recalling events in much greater detail than in the conventional process of remembering. The narrator, Will Sheppard, is one of the scientists who developed the drug and tested it on themselves; his account of that development is interspersed with scenes of his memories, as experienced under the influence of Poly-V. But can Will trust what he remembers?
Ingold is especially good with voice in this piece; Will’s character comes through strongly in the matter-of-fact, slightly detached narration, and I particularly liked the way the author retains the essence of Sheppard’s voice in a scene narrated by the four-year-old Will, even as it adopts a more child-like tone.
However, I’m not sure that the story is successful at a more structural level. Its secrets are revealed in a pattern that makes the tale less disorienting than I think it aims to be, though I appreciate the way it treats the fallibility of human memory.
This story appears in issue 227 of Interzone. Read all my blog posts about that issue here.