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Prime Meridian

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4.03  ·  Rating details ·  308 ratings  ·  99 reviews
Amelia dreams of Mars. The Mars of the movies and the imagination, an endless bastion of opportunities for a colonist with some guts. But she’s trapped in Mexico City, enduring the drudgery of an unkind metropolis, working as a rent-a-friend, selling her blood to old folks with money who hope to rejuvenate themselves with it, enacting a fractured love story. And yet there’ ...more
Kindle Edition, 124 pages
Published July 10th 2018 by JABberwocky Literary Agency (first published December 1st 2017)
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4.03  · 
Rating details
 ·  308 ratings  ·  99 reviews


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Grace
Nov 11, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: solid
This novella creeped me out. It was a snapshot of stymied dissatisfaction, a life arrested on its course and plunged by force into a stagnancy leading nowhere. If I sound overly flowery, like I'm trying to write a literary-sounding review of The Great Gatsby or some other profoundly uncomfortable classic work, it's because that's what Prime Meridian was like.

Only I don't need any American Lit teacher to tell me, "You see, Gatsby was so influential because it encapsulated the essence of the 1920
...more
Rincey
Dec 18, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poc-author
My disappointment in this comes from two main things: 1) It's a novella and when I finished I wished I wanted it to be longer because I wanted all of it fleshed out more. 2) I definitely thought it took place in space (Look, I just auto-downloaded this because it's Silvia Moreno-Garica. I only like skimmed the summary.)

But man, you guys, Silvia Moreno-Garcia is always so freaking good at these morally gray, complicated characters. I can't get over it.

Watch me talk about this book in my December
...more
K.J. Charles
I thought this would be a sf, but although it's set in a crumbling future when Mars colonisation is underway, it's mainly a portrait of a young woman in despair. Amelia dreams of Mars, sells plasma, scrabbles together a living as a professional friend and half-hearted mistress. Vivid, powerful writing in a fully realised world of grinding poverty and wealth gap. Amelia's bleakness, expressed in a detached inability to engage with her lover or sister, is powerfully done, and there is the faintest ...more
Adrian Dooley
The story of Amelia, a young woman who dreams of moving to Mars which has been colonised. She dreams of the reality of living with Mars and the romantic version in the old films depicting it.

But she is stuck scraping by on Earth in Mexico City, doing odd jobs here and there just to survive, living with her sister and her kids, she spends most of her days in coffee houses drinking the cheapest coffee while using their wifi.
An old boyfriend who broke her heart appears on the scene again and as she
...more
Leseparatist
I find stories like this one strangely transfixing. The protagonist is a very young woman (though she is convinced that 25 is far older than it is) imprisoned in an untenably awful situation by external factors (poverty, economy, lack of family support) as well as internal ones (I'd say depression, and assorted problems related to that). It is a difficult and affecting read where little happens and even less is affected by the character herself: she reacts to events, and even the conclusion depe ...more
Rivqa
Nov 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A novella of survival in a very real dystopia of later late-stage capitalism. But also a story of missed opportunities and second chances. Achingly beautiful.
kari
Dec 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
That was not what I expected - at all. I thought I was in for a space exploration story. I got a powerful, emotional portrayal of precarious life in an enormous city, the suffocating weight of a number of tiny things gone wrong, disillusionment and dystopia that's become so commonplace no one sees it as such. All this contrasted with love of 80's movies in their endearing cheesiness. I thought I'd read just a couple of pages, and then I didn't stop reading until the very end.
A Reader's Heaven
Love, life, dreams, and a world beyond reach.
Amelia dreams of Mars. The Mars of the movies and the imagination, an endless bastion of opportunities for a colonist with some guts. But she’s trapped in Mexico City, enduring the drudgery of an unkind metropolis, working as a rent-a-friend, selling her blood to old folks with money who hope to rejuvenate themselves with it, enacting a fractured love story. And yet there’s Mars, at the edge of the silver screen, of life. It awaits her.


I have to start
...more
imyril
I think I have something in my eye. What a brilliant, forceful story.

Full review to follow.

I received a free copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Megan
Feb 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Basically a science fiction novel placed right now. The hope of Mars is a backdrop against the hardscrabble life of twentysomethings stuck in a gig economy. Sad and truthful without ever quite losing hope. It's a novella, so take a couple hours and read this one.
Sarah (CoolCurryBooks)
Prime Meridian is a lovely, quiet science fiction novella.

Amelia is a lonely woman, drifting through an unsatisfying life in Mexico City. She’s wound up living with her bossy older sister and her two nieces in one cramped apartment, while she works a series of odd temp jobs, mostly as someone rich people can hire to be their friend.

But Amelia has dreams. She dreams of Mars. Becoming a Martian colonist requires resources that are far out of Amelia’s grasp, but she’s never given up on the dream.


“A
...more
Jessica Strider
Dec 12, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pros: interesting story, good character development

Cons: limited description

Amelia dreams of heading to Mars, but she can’t afford the flight and doesn’t want to be an indentured servant, so she continues to eek out an existence in Mexico City, making ends meet by doing occasional jobs as a paid friend.

This is a novella funded by an IndieGoGo campaign, which I supported.

Amelia isn’t the most likeable character, as evidenced by her limited Friendrr clientele, but she is an honest one. A string of
...more
Katie
Dec 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
(I received an early ebook copy of this book from the publisher through Netgalley. My opinions are my own)

Wow. I had no expectations going into this. I knew three things: the cover was gorgeous, it was listed as Sci-Fi, and the main character wanted to go to Mars.

What I got was leagues above and beyond.

The first thing you should know is this is a quick, fast paced story. It's written in the clipped, straightforward style reminiscent of the Lost Generation. This does not mean the writing is not
...more
Runalong
Nov 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition


A beautiful passionate tale of a twenty-five year old woman in Mexico City who is stuck in life while dreaming of Mars. This novella is where the dream
Of the future keeps you going when everyone else wants you to do what they want. Amazing

Full review - https://www.runalongtheshelves.net/ch...
Bogi Takács
Review soonish IY"H! I should say in the meanwhile that I liked it.

Source of the book: Bought with my own money
Nikki
Received to review via Netgalley; publication date 10th July 2018

Prime Meridian is a rather quiet novella, following the low-key struggle of life in Mexico City for its protagonist, Amelia, while she dreams of life in the colonies on Mars. There’s no intense action, just an emotional undercurrent of bitterness and the fear that she’ll never escape Mexico City and her life there. There’s an honesty about Amelia’s character — not always likeable, for the reader or for the people around her — but a
...more
Riley Ashby
Jul 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: scifi-fantasy
This is an exceptional sci-fi novella that hearkens back to the style of Ray Bradbury and H.G. Wells. Beautifully crafted.
Maddalena
Dec 18, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2018
4 & 1/2 STARS

This third work I’ve read by Silvia Moreno-Garcia confirms that she’s an extremely versatile author: after the violent world of vampires shown in Certain Dark Things, and the frivolously vicious society of The Beautiful Ones, with this novella we explore Mexico in the near future, a future where mankind has established colonies on Mars while on Earth entire areas suffer from a failing economy, their inhabitants struggling in a hand-to-mouth existence that seems to offer little h
...more
Morgan Dhu
Mar 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Like the lives of most people without wealth, status or high-tech credentials in Silvia Moreno-Garcia’s novella Prime Meridian, Amelia’s life is shit. After dropping out of university to cate for a dying mother, she lost her scholarship, and with that, her chance at a life she’s dreamed of forever, a life on Mars. Instead, she lives in her dead mother’s house with her sister and her nieces, and the best job she’s been able to find in months is working as a pretend companion for Friendrr.

In More
...more
Jocelyn
This is the second work I've read by SMG and though it doesn't quite reach my love for Certain Dark Things , it was still a solid read.

Prime Meridian is a much quieter story than I was expecting, though again we have the backdrop of Mexico that seems to be part of Moreno-Garcia's MO. In a distant future, we find Amelia: lonely, apathetic, out of options, and dreaming about the day she can finally leave for a Mars colony. She makes money where she can, which is mostly by sitting with an old actr
...more
Mark Gardner
Feb 08, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018
I expected a space sci-fi, but ended up with a life drama. I liked the dystopian world that Amelia lives in. It’s so poignant and tells a story we’ve heard time and time again in real life. She was on track for a stable life, and then everything went sideways. The years rolled forward, and she finds herself in a situation many of us face every day. But she still dreams of Mars.

Sometimes, it’s hard to like Amelia, but as in life, no one is perfect, except on Facebook. The relationship between Ame
...more
Claudie Arseneault
Dec 01, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sf
Wow I'm not sure what I expected from Prime Meridian, but this wasn't it. This novella is a raw portrayal of life at the fringes, scraping dollars together, of clinging to a dream when every little thing seems to go wrong. At times it's hard to like Amelia, although to me it stemmed from how much she hated herself, but I think this barrier to really falling for her amplifies the story and gives it an essential depth. She's the kind of character you really root for, even if you'll never call her ...more
Lara
Not what I expected, but that's Silvia Moreno-Garcia for you! This one is definitely more literary fiction than sci-fi, but it's still an interesting mix of the two genres, and I always love the way she writes. I probably won't keep coming back to this one like I will Signal to Noise and The Beautiful Ones, but I think it will stick in my mind anyway. I'm looking forward to whatever Moreno-Garcia does next!
Laura
Jan 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This novella is an excellent portrait of a person who didn't get the right start in life. Amelia's smart and tough, but she lost her botany scholarship when she took time off to care for her dying mother. Now in her mid-twenties, she lives in a crowded, crime-ridden, near-future Mexico City, eating cruddy vat-grown meat and working as a hired friend for an app called Friendrr. Amelia dreams of forging a new life growing plants in the red soil of Mars. This story is just the right length for what ...more
Olga Godim
Dec 01, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy-scifi
Not really, no. The protagonist, Amelia, is trapped in Mexico City by poverty and hopelessness. She works low-paying jobs, she doesn’t have a profession, her education is unfinished, and her relationship with her only relative, her sister, is far from excellent. Bitter and angry, Amelia doesn’t like anything about her life. She hates the people surrounding her. She hates herself. She hates the city and the world, and she sees only ugliness everywhere. Unfortunately, that is as far as she goes. S ...more
Kim
Nov 17, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really enjoyed this read. I backed Silvia Moreno-Garcia's project to get an early copy of this and I was not disappointed.

Moreno-Garcia is great at writing complex characters that are easy to relate to and in most cases see at least a part of yourself in.

I found myself very invested in Amelia's dream of going to Mars.
El_Commutador
Dec 30, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A tiny little gem, an author to follow. Loved it!
Shaunesay
Aug 03, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This novella length story set in a future where we have traveled to and colonized Mars is packed full of the desperation that many are feeling right now. It is the story of a young woman who put everything she dreamed of on hold to care for a sick parent, then never was able to pick it back up again after that parent passed, with a sister who takes her presence for granted, but tries to make her feel like the leech. It is the story of a woman who finally takes her life back, with help from an un ...more
Biz
”Mars, Amelia’s Mars. Always Mars, in every stolen and quiet moment.”

What a gorgeous novella. Though not without its flaws, this was a sincerely refreshing read and it satisfied my need for a good scifi story.

The world-building is way more exquisite and deep than most novellas and even some full-length novels, and it was believable in a way that I totally believe that the Earth could devolve into this in a few generations. It’s set not in a dystopia, but in a near-dystopian universe where no
...more
Danielle
Jul 24, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Uh what? I don’t get this book. It’s advertised as science fiction, and the cover has a badass woman in a space suit on it, but it’s nothing like science fiction. The only part that could be sci-fi (going to Mars) is not even described/experienced! That’s what I thought this book would be about.

The whole time I was reading it I was thinking, “what’s the point?” Really, what was the point of telling this story? Amelia is just surviving, trying to scrape by via various gigs, and then f*cks her ex
...more
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Silvia Moreno-Garcia is the author of several novels, including Gods of Jade and Shadow. She has also edited a number of anthologies, including the World Fantasy Award-winning She Walks in Shadows (a.k.a. Cthulhu's Daughters). Mexican by birth, Canadian by inclination.
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