THE ZINSSER IMPLANT by Lawrence Kamarck


Email this review


A novel about memory transfer that you'll have no trouble forgetting. Back in 1959 research scientist Jan Reslinder was doing well with the transfer of memory through injections of RNA and DNA and other extracellular fluids from ""conditioned"" rats into the brains of unconditioned rats. Along came Zinsser, a less scrupulous scientist, who lighted up with a brainstorm: why not take the ""memories"" or souls of rich elderly folks and implant them into the forebrains of the newborn? A number of flaws arose, one of them moral: ff the instantly elderly-minded baby is taken over by the new parasite, what happens to the host's soul? Years later, enter penniless Philip Peel, a journalist hired by his aunt's Aeternitas Society to find the fed-up Zinsser and get him to transplant the memories of the society's members into some babies. Money is no object, with Phil immediately set up for $25,000. The society itself has $20 million for the big transplant series, if Zinsser will just agree. Since Zinsser pretends to be dead, Phil cheeks into child-novelist prodigy Justin Phelps, a superannuated 16-year-old who is inhabited by the late 94-year-old novelist William Branch Chester, who was big during the Twenties, but blew his brains out in 1962. Meanwhile, Phil's girlfriend Mary is trying to get pregnant so she can have a baby to move into. . . . A heavy fog of scatterplot, with only a few glimpses of the Kamarck who wrote a couple of good suspensers a decade ago.

Pub Date: March 1st, 1979
Publisher: Dial