Set in a near-future LA, a man falls in love with a beautiful android—but when she is kidnapped and sold piecemeal on the black market, he must track down her parts to put her back together.
Bad luck for Eliot Lazar, he fell in love with an android, a beautiful C-900 named Iris Matsuo. That’s the kind of thing that can get you killed in late 21th century Los Angeles or anywhere else for that matter – anywhere except the man-made island of Atlantis, far out in the Pacific, which is where Eliot and Iris are headed once they get their hands on a boat. But then one night Eliot knocks on Iris’s door only to find she was kidnapped, chopped up, sold for parts.
Unable to move on and unwilling to settle for a woman with a heartbeat, Eliot vows to find the parts to put Iris back together again—and to find the sonofabitch who did this to her and get his revenge.
With a determined LAPD detective on his trail and time running out in a city where machines and men battle for control, Eliot Lazar embarks on a bloody journey that will take him to edge of a moral precipice from which he can never return, from which mankind can never return.
In the vein of Blade Runner, Love in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction is a scifi love story that asks the question, how far will you go to save someone you love?
Publisher: Audible Studios
Audible.com Release Date: February 3, 2015
Three and a half stars: A book with many philosophical ponderings on life and death when it comes to androids.
Eliot Lazar and his android lover sneak a few stolen moments beneath the marred Hollywood sign. Eliot spins another story about the paradise called Inverness, where the two hope to escape and live free of societal constraints. As it is, a heartbeat who loves a robot are at risk of being hunted down and killed. Before Eliot and Iris can realize their dream, tragedy strikes. Iris goes missing, and Eliot learns she has been chopped up and her parts sold. Eliot is determined to make Iris whole again, not knowing that in doing so, he may go too far. How far is he willing to go to save an android?
What I Liked:
- Love in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction is a book that is outside my normal comfort zone, but I was willing to take a chance on the audiobook version since it is narrated by Luke Daniels, one of my all time favorite narrators. All in all, I am glad that I went on this journey, and in the end, I was left musing over the many philosophical and moral points raised when it comes to android life. Is an android who looks, acts and behaves like a human deserving of a life in servitude and abuse? I enjoyed this crazy story and it is certainly one I will think on.
- At the heart of the story is Eliot Lazar. Eliot isn't the most likable character. He has a drug problem, and he is engaged in a forbidden love affair with a robot. Yet, when it comes to his business dealings, Eliot always tries to do what is right for the androids. When the android he loves is stolen and chopped up into parts, Eliot questions how far he is willing to go to retrieve her and put her back together, not knowing the dark road he will head down. Of course, with each part, Eliot must evaluate his moral compass. Is one android's life superior over another? It is right to kill another android to retrieve the parts that belong to a different android? Is a human life worth more than that of an android? Do humans have the right to kill androids at will? Eliot finds himself faced with all these tough questions and more, and the further he goes the more he loses sight of his beliefs. It was a tough journey with Eliot, and sometimes I admired his choices and at other times I cringed. In the end, I am not sure how I feel about everything, but I do know that this book made me think every step of the way.
- The world building was well done. I thought the author did a good job building a modern world plagued by an ongoing war with the androids due to humans trying to dominate and control androids. The cities are polluted and the humans are drug addicts all thanks to the androids. It is a world where heartbeats rule and androids are used and abused. It is a terrifying and frightening world, and I honestly found myself wavering as to who was right and who was wrong when it came to androids vs. humans.
- The audiobook version is fantastically done. Luke Daniels narrates, and without a doubt, he remains one of my all time favorite narrators. I always appreciate Luke's voices. His voice is amazing, and I will listen to almost everything he narrates.
And The Not So Much:
- The end was open and a cliffhanger. After all the turmoil and upheaval, just when Eliot as at the pivotal moment and everything is in the balance, it ends with no resolution. Not to mention, the author threw in a few more huge stumbling blocks, leaving me wondering if a happy ending was even possible. I was left grasping for more. Why oh why did he have to end it like that? Is there another book, because it sure feels like there is so much more story to tell.
- This book is a bit dark and depressing with heavy moral implications. It isn't an easy read and it requires patience. Even though it is far outside my comfort zone, I am glad I took a chance, because this is a book that will stick with me for a long time. If you can handle violence and a dark story line, take a chance and try this, I would recommend it on audio.
- I never had a firm grasp on how the androids were brought to life. There is the whole idea of an aura and personality and it seemed that the robot's personality wasn't all due to programming. The author needed to expand upon this part of the story, because as it stood, it seemed that the robots weren't all machine, they seemed to have a life spark beyond the machine.
Love in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction was a fascinating and dark read with many moral and philosophical ideas to muse over. I enjoyed the story line, and I liked thinking on all the ideas the author presented. I was disappointed though in the open/ cliffhanger ending. I hope there will be more story down the road because I want to know Eliot's fate.
I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own and I was not compensated for this review.
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