A Place To Stay Forever

Fiction - Science Fiction
308 Pages
Reviewed on 04/21/2019
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

M.L. Lloyd lives in British Columbia. He is currently writing three stories for publication over the next three years. The next book, The Winter Purge, will be released in 2021.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Lesley Jones for Readers' Favorite

In A Place To Stay Forever by Mark L Lloyd, in the year 3272, on board a spacecraft named The Misfits, a special species of human lay asleep. The LaPortan species is the invention of a secretive organization, La Porte industries. Up until now, the LaPorton species feels fortunate to have been chosen. By using the remarkable Stasis Deep Sleep system (SDS), they are able to change their bodies and consciousness and begin a new life. When that existence becomes tiresome, they can simply begin again and become someone new. When The Misfits is struck, one member of the crew, Adayln, discovers everything is not what it seems with the SDS. Adayln decides to risk everything and break LaPorte’s strict code of ethics and regulations to uncover what they are hiding. Adayln, along with fellow crew member, Miranda and journalist Emily, must travel back to 2005 to search for the truth. They may live to regret the decision, however, as a dangerous hornet's nest is about to be unleashed.

I am not normally a fan of science fiction but I liked the synopsis and thought it would be an interesting read. I have to say I was not disappointed. From the onset, with a man nearing the end of his life, the story gripped me. The characters were all likeable with unique personality traits which were also relayed in their dialogue. The story line continually moved forward, with great obstacles for the main characters to overcome and clues to unravel. There were plot twists placed perfectly throughout, which kept me engaged and intrigued. The relationships between the characters were developed and strengthened gradually. I found myself willing Miranda and Emily to find the truth and succeed. The author’s brilliant imagination is matched only by his writing talent. There were so many characters and sub-plots, but the story line never became confusing. I loved the way all the loose ends were smoothly tied up by the end. This book will make you think about mortality and what lies in wait for humanity in the future. If you love a novel that takes you on a thought-provoking journey, then I would highly recommend you read this book.

K.C. Finn

A Place To Stay Forever is an eye-opening work of science fiction penned by author Mark L Lloyd. Focusing on the collision of utopian ideals and the ‘be careful what you wish for’ trope, this amusing and thoughtful novel focuses on a process called the Stasis Deep Sleep System. Argued to cut short the monotony of human existence and reaffirm meaning in life, the system allows its wearers to explore a brand new lifetime, then have it added to your consciousness afterward, adding to an overall journey towards immortality. Of course, for those that do, there is a price, and this is the tale of exactly how that bizarre but appealing system falls short for its customer.

This was a really innovative short read that strongly favoured concept over everything else. Philosophically speaking, the concept of mortality is of course a strong theme, and there are clear considerations which have gone into the setup of the tale to make readers really think about what life means, or at least the meanings that we attribute to life in our everyday moments. I really loved author Mark L Lloyd’s squeaky clean idea of LaPorte and the agents, and the experience that the Stasis Deep Sleep System represents in terms of man’s quest for immortality. In terms of character, it’s more of an Everyman tale in the style of Isaac Asimov, but with a much more humorous modern twist. Overall, A Place To Stay Forever is a recommended read for its sleek and provoking ideas.

Charles Remington

A Place to Stay Forever by Mark L. Lloyd opens with a passage from the works of Lord Devlin Dixby, a romantic author who is destined to play a pivotal role in the story. We are then introduced to Miranda Sage, the central character of the tale, who is currently on board the spaceship Misfit on a journey back to earth. Miranda, her colleagues and fellow travelers have transcended into the Laporte Industries program which allows individuals to extend life and consciousness indefinitely. They exist in a specially created parallel world which, in part, closely resembles their town of origin - in this case Penticton, British Columbia. Those lucky or wealthy enough to have transcended live multiple lives, their consciousness enriched by the breadth of their experiences. But all is not well - a colleague on board the Misfit convinces Miranda that there may be a problem with the system coding and their investigation sets in motion a series of events which will test their grip on reality and their sanity. Trapped inside an early 21st-century life, will they be able to escape back to their ‘real’ existences?

A Place to Stay Forever is the sort of science fiction which deals with time and perception, existential subject matters which can be somewhat oblique in nature. Notwithstanding, Mark L. Lloyd has created periods of great lucidity in the book, introducing some remarkable concepts and clever ideas which could be further developed. Persons who live multiple lives would, by definition, be multi-faceted complex individuals. Here the author has invested a great deal of descriptive effort to fully develop his cast of characters and bring to life the environment in which they exist. If you are a fan of the more cerebral sci-fi adventures dealing with the nature of perception and the possibilities of eternal existence, then A Place to Stay Forever is the book for you.

Grant Leishman

The year is 3289 and although man hasn’t quite achieved immortality, he’s a fair way down the road with the use of the Stasis Deep Sleep System, invented and marketed by LaPorte Industries, which allows people to survive for eons. With a new body and a new consciousness, participants in the scheme are able to travel to the perfectly rendered fake town of Penticton, where they can live a new life until they again get bored, at which time they can then just start all over again. In A Place to Stay Forever, author Mark L Lloyd takes us inside his vivid imagination as he posits where mankind may be heading. La Porte Industries are notoriously secretive about their product and the experience is bound by an unbreakable set of rules, which participants breach at their peril. When Miranda Sage and the crew of the Misfit are woken from Stasis Deep Sleep (SDS) after something hits their spacecraft, they discover an anomaly in the SDS system. Adayln, a crew member, is determined to explore and discover what secrets LaPorte Industries are hiding from them all. With Miranda and Emily, a reporter, they find themselves travelling back in time to the Penticton of 2005. It appears they have opened a veritable Pandora’s Box.

A Place to Stay Forever is unlike any science fiction book I have read before. The premise is intriguing and author Mark L Lloyd keeps the reader continually thinking and wondering about the science and the adventure these characters are on. The whole time travel and time travel paradox problem becomes an issue for the adventurers, but is well handled by the author. The characters are well drawn and although initially I found myself confused over who was whom in this story line, it soon became apparent as the story unraveled. I appreciate the author didn’t allow gender to be an issue for the characters with all of them seemingly having been both male and female in one of their iterations of Stasis Deep Sleep. I felt the plot and the science mechanisms employed in the story made it difficult to keep the story at the level of the layman, but Lloyd was able to do so, for which I was grateful. This story was possibly a bit deep in imagination and science fiction for my usual tastes, but the emotional depth of the characters and their relationships made it very readable and enjoyable for me. I can definitely recommend this as a read for anyone who wonders what the future may potentially hold.

Samantha Dewitt (Rivera)

Their world is meant to be an idyllic one, where no one needs to worry about ever growing old or dying. But when a glitch in the system leaves them with a glimpse into something they’ve never imagined before, it raises more questions than answers. For Adayln and Miranda, it’s more questions than they can leave alone, but their plan to find out more leads to more than a few problems as they suddenly find themselves awake in a world where they never should have been. For Adayln, the experience is too much to bear, but will Miranda and Emily be able to make it out alive in A Place to Stay Forever by Mark L. Lloyd? And if they do stay alive, will they ever be able to regain the consciousness they’ve created while in Penticton?

This is a futuristic book that’s going to take you on a crazy journey. It’s all about characters that are more human than you might think, considering all they’ve been through. But experiencing stasis is supposed to help them become more human, not less. Whether Miranda and Emily will ever make it out of the experience with their minds fully intact is left to be discovered, but the friends they’ll meet along the way are definitely going to be an important part of the process. Without them … there’s no telling what the truth will unfold for them or whether they can ever hope to have the lives they want. With the help of Wade, they just might be able to make some sense of it all, and they have to hope they can because in A Place to Stay Forever you don't know who will make it and who won’t until the very end.