Book Promotion: Aaru by David Meredith

Print Length: 305 pages
Publication Date: July 9, 2017
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
Language: English


…Death and the stillness of death are the only things certain and common to all in this future…
-Friedrich Nietzsche

Rose is dying. Her body is wasted and skeletal. She is too sick and weak to move. Every day is an agony and her only hope is that death will find her swiftly before the pain grows too great to bear.
She is sixteen years old.

Rose has made peace with her fate, but her younger sister, Koren, certainly has not. Though all hope appears lost Koren convinces Rose to make one final attempt at saving her life after a mysterious man in a white lab coat approaches their family about an unorthodox and experimental procedure. A copy of Rose’s radiant mind is uploaded to a massive super computer called Aaru – a virtual paradise where the great and the righteous might live forever in an arcadian world free from pain, illness, and death. Elysian Industries is set to begin offering the service to those who can afford it and hires Koren to be their spokes-model.
Within a matter of weeks, the sisters’ faces are nationally ubiquitous, but they soon discover that neither celebrity nor immortality is as utopian as they think. Not everyone is pleased with the idea of life everlasting for sale.

What unfolds is a whirlwind of controversy, sabotage, obsession, and danger. Rose and Koren must struggle to find meaning in their chaotic new lives and at the same time hold true to each other as Aaru challenges all they ever knew about life, love, and death and everything they thought they really believed.


David Meredith is a writer and educator originally from Knoxville, Tennessee. He recieved both a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Arts from East Tennessee State University, in Johnson City, Tennessee as well as a Tennessee State Teaching license. He is currently a doctoral student in Educational Leadership. On and off, he spent nearly a decade, from 1999-2010 teaching English in Northern Japan, but currently lives with his wife and three children in the Nashville Area where he continues to write and teach English.

Connect with the Author: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Amazon

Chapter 1


It was both quiet and not. There was no human sound certainly – no comforting hum of low conversing voices; no occasional chuckle, gasp or cheerful exclamation that might have indicated the warmth of another charitable soul nearby; no whoops or shrieks of joyful children at jubilant play. Quiet reigned, but not like a lullaby her grandmother might have sung at bedtime or a calm summer dusk on the back porch with fireflies winking and flashing in the failing light of perishing day. Rather, it was a silence born of sterility and cold. The only noises were the soft yet incessant beeping of the heart monitor, the dull, low roar of the HVAC unit as it switched itself on and off, and the occasional shrill ejaculation of incomprehensible medical jargon over the intercom.
The whole building is soulless, Rose thought in disgust.
The place was starved for color. There was virtually nothing that was not white or metallic. Much like the silence, the white was not the comforting sort either, like say, gently billowing linens on the clothesline in the back yard on a warm spring day or the sparkling kind like morning sunlight on a virgin snow that kept one home from school. It was a nothing white, a void white – pallid and sickly.
God, I hate hospitals.
Rose tried to lift her hand, but even that slight movement exhausted her. The appendage was covered with bandages and bristled plastic hoses, tubes, sensors, and wires as if they were sprouting from her ailing body – burgeoning from the wasted limb like so many fungi to engulf and devour her like a mass of toadstools might consume some rotted log. It felt as if they had catheterized her soul, bleeding away her life into some indiscernible, whirring machine of a great and fathomless factory – a factory that sucked in the living and spit out the dead or the half dead… if you were lucky.
Rose was not lucky. She was sure of that. If every detective, policeman, and investigative reporter in the world did a search, if they banged on every door and sniffed out every nook and cranny in every far-flung country, distant city, or lonely little town to find the unluckiest possible person, Rose could not imagine that it would not be her own oncology unit door that would be thrown wide with a triumphant “Ah ha!”
A nurse had just left after cleaning her, changing the IV bag, and filling Rose with pills and needles that left her stomach roiling, her head hurting, and her body weak, so very weak. That was the part she hated the most. She hated feeling weak.
Rose detested wanting to throw up all the time but knowing she didn’t have the energy to drag herself out of bed and get to the toilet, or even grab for the bed pan on a nearby tray table. Her arm flopped back down to the white sheets in ignominious defeat. She could not even hold up her own skeletal hand.
Things had been this way for so long… She barely remembered anything anymore but hospitals, doctors, needles, and surgeries. There had been a time when things were different, she recalled – a time of jumping, playing, and rolling down hills, kicking soccer balls and leaping off of diving boards in the hot summer sun. She remembered dancing and singing and laughing! Albeit vaguely… So long ago, now… Another life… They felt almost like the memories of a different person.
There was a soft knock on the door, and Rose turned her head towards it. A fit and attractive blonde woman came in. Her eyes were downcast, exposing the crown of her head and a good inch of brown roots where she parted her otherwise yellow hair. She was wearing tight khaki pants, a green, collared sports-shirt, and a plastic nametag that read “Gypsie”. She smelled strongly of old fry oil.
“Hey sweetie,” Rose’s mother began softly. “How you feeling, sugar? Any better?”
She sidled past the bed and sat down on a nearby chair.
No! Rose wanted to say, she wanted to scream. No! She wasn’t better. She would never be better. There was no better! There was always just more “treatment” – more pricks and pokes, pills and procedures – things that would keep her alive, but wishing for death.
“No worse,” Rose croaked instead. It was not a lie, at least – not today anyway.
“Well, that’s a blessing,” her mother replied. “Nobody ever has enough good days that we should forget to thank Jesus for ‘em…”
Rose groaned inwardly.
Sure, she thought bitterly. Thanks so much God that I haven’t thrown up or crapped myself yet today…
Mom struggled to say something more, but could not come up with anything. She stared at her folded hands instead. Silence stretched between them.
“Do you wanna watch TV?” her mother ventured at last. “The Triumph Network always has some good singing on… That might make you feel better…”
Rose shook her head weakly, but emphatically no. The last thing she wanted to hear right now was some spackle haired television pastor with his fake, toothpaste smile tell her that if she just prayed hard enough, God would give her whatever she asked for. What a lie…
“Well,” her mother tried again. “I think one of your shows might be on. What’s that cartoon channel you always watch? Eighty-one, isn’t it? I could look…” She half stood, but Rose once more shook her head.
She had no interest in television. There was nothing on TV but healthy, happy people going about their spectacular lives – Lives not spent in hospital beds staring up at dim fluorescent lights and cold white ceilings – lives spent envisioning a radiant future that Rose knew would never come… not for her at least. She wanted no part of them. Mother sank back into the chair.
“Alright, sweetie,” she fidgeted a few moments more, and then ventured again. “Your doctors seem real excited about this new medication they’ve put you on. It’ll take a day or two before we know for sure of course, but you might be up and around again before you know it! All things are possible in Christ, after all…”
Rose looked at her mother’s helpless, ashen face. They both knew her words were hollow. She was not lying really, but Rose did not think her mother believed what she was saying either.
“Sure,” Rose replied noncommittally. “I hope so.”

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