What do Robots dream of?
Four leading science fiction authors explore this question in four stand-alone novellas.
Are humans to be trusted with the important things: the structure of society, governing their own lives, meting out justice, etc, or would an AI be better suited to the job? If an AI really cared about humanity, would it be willing to sit back and watch us bumble along, making a mess of things, or would it step in to help us, to make things better?
Despite the best of intentions, could such intervention ever work? After all, we humans are flawed, limited by our vision and by the dictates of the society that helped shape us, and an AI is limited by its programming, which is carried out by humans... At the end of the day, are any of us – human or AI – truly free?
“While Robson lays out these classic themes, which date all the way back to R.U.R., with admirable clarity and logic, she also grounds her tale by recurrently focusing on a few human characters, most notably Devorah and Domitia, Russian and Chinese gang leaders who become on-again, off-again allies, and Grace, whom we first meet as a teenager being raised by a nanny robot after her parents disappeared years earlier, later as an 18-year-old soldier in a carefully staged World War III... what Robson does achieve is a sharply articulated encapsulation, from an unusual point of view, of the problems facing a well-intentioned AI trying to deal with the chaotic likes of us.” – Gary K. Wolfe in Locus
“What a superb novella this is: imagine we put an AI globally in charge of our happiness and welfare. Are human beings so contrary and suspicious of outside control that many would then immediately want to undermine its success?” – Goodreads Reviewer
“…a tale that is sleek and sophisticated and ultimately very moving.” – Amazon reviewer
Available as an A5 paperback, a numbered limited edition hardback signed to the author (limited to just 50 copies), and in digital formats.