Annalee Newitz


Reviewed: 2021-05-30
I think any book that can push you into a current of infinitely looping philosophical pondering deserves 5 stars..

I wouldn't call it stereotypically enjoyable, the characters are too flawed for that. Plus the socio-political/economical narrative right at the forefront, makes this too cerebral (or potentially emotional? You'll have to read it to understand that..) for it to be a joyful romp through the future..

But, I don't care.. My brain is a buzzing, and that marks a big tick from me!

I listened to the audio and Jennifer Ikeda ramped up the the quality as well. She's a rocking narrator!

Overall win!
Reviewed: 2019-01-14
I just... didn't like the writing here for some reason. I loved the concept, the message, the characters, but the writing just wasn't my jam.
Reviewed: 2018-02-19

Note - I paid for this book and did NOT receive a free copy of this.


I loved this story from start to end, barring a few sections. The characters are instantly likable. Being on the "patent-hater" side myself, and having read recent news about big-pharmas hiking their drug prices, I could really relate to the story and got invested in the progress of the story. It kept moving at constant pace and didn't get boring for most part. I'm glad that the book doesn't have any fluff / filler to increase the book's page count. Every part of the book is about the main story; there's no irrelevant side-quest here. The end of the book was slightly disappointing though. Small spoilers ahead - 


When the dean forced Med to retract part of her paper, Med or her friends could've published it from some other publication and get it peer-reviewed by other researchers, making it authentic and thus reaching their main goal. But no one thought of that? They just threw in the towel? Didn't make sense. Also, before that, I didn't understand how the "Quick Build" incident qualified as "Yep, now we can publish our paper? That just felt like a very weak reasoning to move the plot along.


Additionally, the parts dealing with sexual / romantic relation between bots and humans were weird. First few times that topic was discussed, it felt very sloppy and idiotic. It matures in later chapters, but still remains the weakest part of the book.


Narration wise, Jennifer Ikeda did an alright job. There are a 3-4 places where she used wrong pauses and inflection / tone. Other than that, it was alright.

Item Posts
@bikram completed #autonomous... on 2018-02-19
@bikram began #autonomous... on 2018-02-13