I didn’t plan to request this book. It just happened. I do not regret that decision!!
This ARC was provided to me by NetGalley and Hodder & Stoughton in return for an honest review. Thank you.
by M. G. Wheaton
Synopsis by NetGalley / GoodReads
Meet Emily – she can solve advanced mathematical problems, unlock the mind’s deepest secrets and even fix your truck’s air con, but unfortunately, she can’t restart the Sun.
‘A visionary work of science fiction’ Blake Crouch, author of DARK MATTER
She’s an artificial consciousness, designed in a lab to help humans process trauma, which is particularly helpful when the sun begins to die 5 billion years before scientists agreed it was supposed to.
So, her beloved human race is screwed, and so is Emily. That is, until she finds a potential answer buried deep in the human genome. But before her solution can be tested, her lab is brutally attacked, and Emily is forced to go on the run with two human companions – college student Jason and small-town Sheriff, Mayra.
As the sun’s death draws near, Emily and her friends must race against time to save humanity. But before long it becomes clear that it’s not only the species at stake, but also that which makes us most human.
- narrator is non-human
- female MC is not stereotypical
- fast paced and sucked me in
I haven’t read anything where the main character (MC) isn’t biologically human. As far as I know anyway. It was very well done and very fun to read. I very much enjoyed the process of the story and secrets kept from me and later revealed. I liked the science and the processing of Emily, the MC.
The story starts off explaining rather quickly (brutal and efficient) that the world is ending, and it introduces us to the main character who is an artificial consciousness.
I enjoyed this story very much. It sucked me in and I flew through it. The story progresses quickly and increases in the dramatics scale as the story progress. But it was all logical progress and it didn’t feel off in any way. Even the science which I don’t know much about felt right and logical. An expert in the field might feel differently to me.
There is a lot of information to give in the beginning but I didn’t feel overwhelmed or confused. The main reason for that is because Emily the MC and an Artificial Consciousness (AC) gives you (the reader) a showdown of events in her own way; short, precise, efficient, with some humour. It’s easy to understand and it’s entertaining. It’s logical. So yes there is a lot to learn about this version of Earth straight off the back, but it’s done so efficiently that it easy and almost like taking two steps at the same time running up the stairs without feeling winded. Or does that just happen me?
Magic System / Science
There is no magic in here, but there is science and it’s not heavy. It’s easy to follow and very interesting. The science focuses on Emily’s processors and software and her abilities as a software, but also on biology and DNA.
Emily is the main character and she’s an AC, artificial consciousness. She is pure code but programmed to have emotional and empathy. The thought behind that was well done too. I found myself nodding along to her logic and how she views the world and humankind.
I really like Emily as an MC. I enjoyed her logic and her exploration of her emotions and her ability to dream.
As a note; this was a female main character written by a male author, and luckily it’s not stereotypical nor bland. It’s a good representation of a female character and I felt the author has done a good job in creating Emily as a whole.
We follow primarily Emily. There are no other narrators in the book but there are other characters. I loved Jason and Mayra. He was sweet and she was badass 🙂
Though Emily questions at some point both her gender and her orientation and whether it is programmed into her software or if that is something she made herself. She does not make any conclusion but the discussion around the subject is acknowledged.
I found this book well written and it went really fast. I found myself sucked in and annoyed at any distractions I got, like hunger… who knew!
One negative comment is the constant use of the word mankind instead of humankind. The MC makes a point about it in the beginning but that’s it. I would have preferred it if Emily used Humankind and the villains use Mankind throughout to separate them, but that didn’t happen. I still wish.
I really enjoyed this read! It was fun, quick and entertaining. The science was fascinating and the world was realistic, to me at least.
I loved Emily as a character and her world view and logic.
It’s been a while since I got sucked into a book and this very much so filled that gap.
Also, I loved the ending!
Have you read this? What did you think?