Artificial condition

Martha Wells

Book - 2018

It has a dark past - one in which a number of humans were killed. A past that caused it to christen itself Murderbot. But it has only vague memories of the massacre that spawned that title, and it wants to know more. Teaming up with a research transport vessal named ART (you don't want to know what the A stands for), Murderbot heads to the mining facility where it went rogue. What it discovers will forever change the way it thinks ...

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1st Floor SCIENCE FICTION/Wells Martha Due Dec 16, 2023
Science fiction
New York, NY : Tom Doherty Associates 2018.
Main Author
Martha Wells (author)
First edition
Physical Description
158 pages ; 21 cm
Contents unavailable.
Review by Booklist Review

Everyone's favorite Murderbot is back. The second installment in Wells' Murderbot Diaries picks up where All Systems Red (2017) left off, with the series' titular character seeking answers to its origin by traveling back to where it first went rogue to learn what really happened. Along the way, it makes friends with an intelligent research transport ship and agrees to protect a group of naive researchers whose discoveries make them a target for murder. Murderbot is one of the most delightful characters in current science fiction: a killing machine who chooses to be a good person, a robot who suffers from crippling social anxiety, a sarcastic misanthrope who really just wants to be left alone to watch TV. The relationship between Murderbot and ART (the intelligent ship) adds an entertaining The Odd Couple element to the story. Like the first book, this one is a fast, fun, exciting read, and the series keeps getting funnier. Perfect entertainment for a quiet evening. Although Artificial Condition can be read as a stand-alone, readers will prefer reading the series in order.--Keogh, John Copyright 2018 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by Publisher's Weekly Review

Wells follows the classically tight adventure pacing of All Systems Red with a slightly disorienting shift to self-exploration, making intense moments out of data dumps and matter-of-fact narrative out of fights to the death. Murderbot, a sentient artificial intelligence, is on the lam, hopping cargo transports and hacking security cameras on a quest to discover the truth of its own origin story as the villain of a massacre. Sounds like a rollicking time-which it is, but not in the way one might expect. The real discovery is not about the horrific events Murderbot may have participated in some 35,000 hours ago, but the bonds it never intended to form with beings who were no part of its plan. The most endearing is ART, a wacky cross between 2001's HAL and Mycroft Holmes, who plays to Murderbot's Sherlock with acerbic and infinite superiority. The broadening of Murderbot's experience, however mundane, "make[s] it harder for me to pretend not to be a person," and the dizzying, inarguable plenitude of personhood is what this dense novella most intimately explores. There's plenty here to entertain the many fans of the first novella. Agent: Jennifer Jackson, Donald Maass Literary. (May) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.