David Elbaz

and Alice Tao Remembered the Future Publication date : April 23, 2010

In his first novel, Le Vase de Pépi, David Elbaz blended quantum physics with Egyptian mythology to take us on a fascinating journey through time in the world of particles. The inspiration for his new novel is once again time-travel, but now his vivid physicist's imagination, always on the lookout for strange paradoxes, moves constantly back and forth between Ancient China and the future.

Paris 2102: Professor Duchemin, a brain specialist, meets Michel Marmosa, a young savant with an amazing ability for calculation who is obsessed by strange memories. He also seems to have perfect recall.

Shanghai, the present: the scientist Alice Tao is attending a convention where she learns something that could lead to an astounding discovery, one which will revolutionise all of astrophysics as well as the future of the planet…

Some years later: Duchemin now works for a strange Chinese organisation and is using Marmosa to assist him. Having become very well known, Duchemin is now in the process of extending his power beyond the scientific world. The organisation that finances his work seems to want to manipulate every human being's memory. It seems that what Alice once discovered has since been wiped from human memory.

How was Duchemin, with Marmosa's help, capable of anticipating Alice's discoveries — and perhaps of deleting them? Will Marmosa oppose Duchemin? What happened to Alice Tao? Is Duchemin really the “bad guy” he appears to be? Ultimately, will manipulating everyone's minds be enough to avoid the terrible consequences of Alice's discovery?

  • A vertiginous variation on time-travel, merging the most daring theories of astrophysics with the latest knowledge on the human brain and memory.
  • How, in the future, will knowledge of the past be able to change the present? What effects does virtual reality have on reality? These classic science-fiction themes are revisited here from a new angle — the manipulation of human memory.
  • A novel in the best tradition of Philip K. Dick: a drama where nothing less than the future of humanity is at stake.

David Elbaz is the author of Le Vase de Pépi. An astrophysicist, he heads a laboratory of the French Atomic Energy Commission (CEA). He is the recipient of a Chrétien International Research Grant, awarded by the American Astronomical Society, for his work on how galaxies are formed.