Thought impossible, but Dr. Wallace Theren has pushed the boundaries of computational science, creating an artificial mind capable of conscious thought. Naturally, his creation faces a harsh world bent on using it, exploiting it, or destroying it. If the first synthetic intelligence is to survive its early years, it’ll need friends, but more importantly, it’ll need a family.
And together, they’ll need to show their enemies they’re worth saving . . . or fearing.
Title: First of Their Kind | Author: C.D. Tavenore | Publisher: Two Doctors Media Collaborative LLC | Date: 30 April, 2019 I Pages: 239I ASIN: B07PYTG1ML | Genre: Science Fiction | Language: English | Triggers: None | Rating: 2 out of 5 | Source: Received a copy of this book free from the author for review consideration.
First Of Their Kind Review
There’s a market for this book, but sadly, it doesn’t include me. It’s a very intellectually presented story of artificial intelligence and the future of humanity. A doctor creates the most advanced for of AI who then creates another AI companion. The story touches on topics of gender identification, what it means to be human, and the fight between religion and science.
However, I never felt invested in Theren’s (the AI main character) journey. Because this entire book is from Theren’s POV, it read very scientific and highbrow. This tone is authentic to the AI’s personality, but as a reader, the narrative lacked a lot of emotion. As a result, I never really felt connected to Theren or the other characters in the book. If a human’s POV had been added in conjunction with the AI’s, I think it would have created a more well-rounded approach to the story.
Sadly, I also don’t believe this book had a clear premise. Halfway through the story, I wondered why I was reading it and if I wasn’t reviewing it, I probably would have set it aside. It seemed to be a story about gender identification, respecting gender neutrality and identifying with specific pronouns rather than a story about AI’s assimilating with humanity. I was excited by this idea, and figured the story was largely a metaphor to the struggles of transgender individuals. But this message doesn’t really carry through to the end of the story. So after finishing the story, I’m not sure what I was suppose to take away from the book.
There was a rebel group threatening to destroy Theren, but that subplot doesn’t gain traction until well into the second half of the story, which is a shame because if that had been developed more, it would have created a lot more tension.
Also introduced late in the book, there’s a subplot about setting up a moon colony. I don’t really know why that was included.
Any tension in the book happens within the last few chapters. The rest of the novel doesn’t build a lot of suspense. Again, I think if there were multiple POVs, this may have been fixed, but everything coming from Theren, who is not only limited in perspective, but literally doesn’t leave the lab for much of the story, means there isn’t a lot of wiggle room to explore characters or motivations or create tension.
With all that said, I do think this book will be better by those who enjoy more technical dense/ less emotionally driven scifi. But even those readers might agree that the plot and character development never hits full potential.
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