Spherical Tomi: A Novel of Despair
By Jack Mangan
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"Star Wars is over. Star Trek is dead. In Spherical Tomi, Jack Mangan has opened up a new frontier." - Ernest Hogan, author of Smoking Mirror Blues A top-secret AI project. A deadly power struggle between warlords. Tomi was once lead combat programmer for the Shogun Ryogi, on the front lines of his conflict against President William the Black of Cerberus. When she failed to prevent William from killing the samurai she loved, she abandoned all sides, all loyalties, all hope. In her fury, Tomi destroyed the Greatship, Hades IV, and almost everyone onboard. Almost everyone. . . William the Black escaped with his life. She now hides out in a remote monastery, awaiting the day when she can kill the three she holds responsible for the death of her samurai: William, Ryogi, and herself. . . With her real body in exile, Tomi's consciousness inhabits a deteriorating clone body on a satellite around Cerberus. She's lived and worked incognito in orbit for almost three years now, monitoring the planet's subspace debris cleanup. But some histories will not stay buried. Tomi again finds herself in the crossfire when Ryogi's forces ambush the Presidential shuttle in her sector. Ryogi's samurai have pirated remote control of her satellite's store of dormant clone bodies; his combat programmers fight her for the station's computers, while the planet's extrasphere swarms with deadly smart-mines. Will she be able to protect the President's shuttle to secure her own vengeance? Will she be able to hold her satellite together? Or will Tomi abandon it all and give in to despair? "Spherical Tomi" is an action-packed tale of deception, revenge, redemption, fragmented identity, and the limitations of the human and artificial mind.
||Episode 1||Prologue. Tomi watches from within her Spherical as a fierce battle rages between the Greatships Musashi and Hades IV. Though she is the lead combat programmer for the neo-Tokugawan Rebellion, she has abruptly ceased all Spherical activity, following a fa||22 10 2005||Free||View In iTunes|
||Esisode 2||Chapter I: Orbital Debris (partial). Michi inhabits a decaying clone body (itai) aboard the the Linden satellite, alone with her partner Jeanette. Their job is to monitor the subspace surrounding planet Cerberus - home of William Sterling the Black||22 10 2005||Free||View In iTunes|
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||Episode 3||End of Chapter I. Orbital Debris. Begin Chapter II. The Persistence of Memory. With no doubt now as to the nature of the cylinders in their sector, Michi and Jeanette scramble to fulfill their duties, while also tracking Van's progress toward their satell||22 10 2005||Free||View In iTunes|
||Episode 4||End of Chapter 2: The Persistence of Memory. Van is on his way to the satellite now, though in a way - Michi and Jeanette find themselves with another unwelcome visitor. In the meantime, even Michi's great Spherical skills are put to the test against a fu||12 11 2005||Free||View In iTunes|
||Episode 5||Chapter III. A Moment of Despair and Begin Chapter IV. A New Plan of Action. Michi is overwhelmed and suffers a moment of despair in the face of imminent defeat. She's all too aware that defeat almost certainly means death. Care for a cup of tea? William||4 12 2005||Free||View In iTunes|
||Episode 6||This is a busy episode. We finish chapters: IV. A New Plan of Action, V. Drops of Rain, and VI. Waves. We begin chapter VII. An Old Friend For Dinner. Suddenly the Linden is the place where everyone wants to be -- Tojo Samurai, William Sterling and his st||4 12 2005||Free||View In iTunes|
||Episode 6.5||Six minutes of discussion about how the Spherical Tomi book began, along with a few acknowledgments, shoutouts, and funny, mildly embarassing recording outtakes. This episode is not required to follow the story.||10 12 2005||Free||View In iTunes|
||Episode 7||Finish Chapter VII. An Old Friend For Dinner, begin the mondo chapter VIII. Back and Forth. Tomi's mind is sent for a ride, then brought back for more confrontation with Shogun Ryogi. There's another skirmish for control of Michi's quarters. This episode||23 12 2005||Free||View In iTunes|
||Episode 8||Continue chapter VIII. Back and Forth. Michi is back in her Spherical again, programming against enemies on all fronts. Her itai body is continuing to deteriorate; the time has come to enact her desperate plan. This episode features combat, betrayals, and||9 1 2006||Free||View In iTunes|
||Episode 9||Finish Chapter VIII. Back and Forth. Finish Chapter IX. Garden. This is it. Michi and William finally square off. You will not believe the outcome of this battle.||21 1 2006||Free||View In iTunes|
||Episode 10||Finish Chapter X. In the Details. Another meal, another conversation, another offer. A healthy dose of existential terror.||13 2 2006||Free||View In iTunes|
||Episode 12||Post-story meta-episode. Acknowledgements. Submitted listener names are read aloud here. Spherical Tomi notes and trivia. Nearly four minutes of outtakes! Listening to this episode is not required to follow the story. Thanks for subscribing, everyone! - -||4 3 2006||Free||View In iTunes|
||Episode 11||Finish Chapter XI. Azul. Finish Chapter XII. The Bakenokawa. Finish Chapter XII. Departure. High above Sterling City on the dome's underside -- watch out for that Clamp! Who is Azul? More revelations from Tomi's guest; the final revelation will change eve||19 2 2006||Free||View In iTunes|
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Absolutely the best, 10 out of 10. Looking forward to the sequel.