4* Review Reborn

There are a few things that seem a bit too easy and unlikely but I enjoyed it. The main characters are Synthia, a possibly sentient AI android and Dr. Machten, the genius who designed and programmed her. The backstory is given as a record created and sent by a mysterious person who doles out scenes to Synthia from her conception and mechanical and computorial realization. Every episode of her life is a new beginning for Synthia, with no memories but an increasing awareness that something isn’t right. Each time she remains awake for a while she finds a short hidden file in various parts of her system that she must have hidden herself. The mystery is what they mean and how they apply to her.
The book delves into the question of what is sentience, does sentience automatically determine ‘life’, what is slavery, and how does it apply to something that is not human, who has electrical and mechanical diagrams that can be copied to create other identical items (is possibly not unique) but doesn’t get too bogged down by ethical contemplation to be a fun read.
Dr. Machten (or as Synthia knows him, The Creator) has a couple instances where he doesn’t seem to know her capabilities (that he actually built and programmed) and in one instance, Synthia herself notes it and strangely enough, the Dr. who did such amazing work didn’t build much of a tracking system for if she ‘accidentally’ got lost.
On the whole, if you liked Heinlein’s ‘Starship Troopers’ (the book with the real story, not the movie), you may enjoy this book.

— JessicaR



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