I’ve been aware of Paul Melko as a writer for a long time (and he lives in Ohio! yay), but I hadn’t actually read anything by him until picking up his scifi novel “Singularity’s Ring.”
This book chronicles the development of a “pod” or “cluster” conciousness entity consisting of five individuals who, through conditioning, pheremones, and vague chemical changes, can hear eachother think and achieve a consensus about what to do during their daily lives.
These five live together and act together, despite each one having their own individual characteristic that adds to the entity as a whole (one is strong, one is the “interface” or speaker for the group, one is a math wizard, etc).
I really really enjoyed this book. I love how the book chronicles how each of the individual parts of this pod learn about their own individuality, but at the end recognizes how they are better as part of the whole.
I love the ironic humor directed at “singletons” and the underlying subtext about how forced community is bad.
Nicely done. Recommended.