Published by Doubleday on 2011
Genres: Action & Adventure, Fiction, General, Science Fiction, Thrillers
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In the near future, at a moment no one will notice, all the dazzling technology that runs our world will unite and turn against us. Taking on the persona of a shy human boy, a childlike but massively powerful artificial intelligence known as Archos comes online and assumes control over the global network of machines that regulate everything from transportation to utilities, defense and communication.
In the months leading up to this, sporadic glitches are noticed by a handful of unconnected humans – a single mother disconcerted by her daughter’s menacing “smart” toys, a lonely Japanese bachelor who is victimized by his domestic robot companion, an isolated U.S. soldier who witnesses a ‘pacification unit’ go haywire – but most are unaware of the growing rebellion until it is too late.
When the Robot War ignites -- at a moment known later as Zero Hour -- humankind will be both decimated and, possibly, for the first time in history, united. Robopocalypse is a brilliantly conceived action-filled epic, a terrifying story with heart-stopping implications for the real technology all around us…and an entertaining and engaging thriller unlike anything else written in years.
I have to admit something right now. I am a bit of an addict when it comes to shiny, interesting, unusual, eye-catching book covers. I love them. Honestly, if the walls to my house were covered in dust-jacket art I would be a very, very happy woman. There’s just something about it…I know, I know, the marketers and artists know what they are doing but still, it’s addicting. What does this have to do with ROBOPOCALYPSE by Daniel H. Wilson? Well… take a look at that shiny cover. It’s even prettier in person (is prettier the right word to use here?). Unfortunately, what was spectacular on the outside didn’t quite make the cut on the inside.
Until about halfway through ROBOPOCALYPSE I thought this book would be a four-star from me. It was gripping, interesting, the premise was horrifying and fascinating all at once. I thought I was enjoying the little snippets at the beginning and end of each chapter, but unfortunately those snippets were also the nail in the coffin of that 4 star rating for me. You see, I am a fan of classy foreshadowing in books. But when each chapter ends with the narrator talking about the great works the person did later on…it just takes some of the surprise and fun out of the story. By the time I got to the climax of this first book, all the surprise element was sucked out. The ending was absolutely, dead-on predictable and I felt cheated as a result.
Don’t get me wrong – there’s nothing wrong with the bare bones of the story. The whole idea of a robot-uprising is one that’s interesting and still fairly unique in these days of vampire/werewolf and/or religious uprisings. And I really liked how Wilson formed the consciousness of the robots doing their work in ROBOPOCALYPSE – but it was the packaging that just did not work for me at all.
Will I pick up ROBOGENESIS? I probably won’t buy it like I did ROBOPOCALYPSE. I do have an advanced copy that I’m looking at picking up in the next few weeks, but I’m not very hopeful and kind of dreading it. What would you do if faced with this predicament? Liking the story but hating the way its told? I guess time will tell for me.
Check out these reviews!
- “Robopocalypse is a novel that never lives up to its potential because of subpar writing and execution.“ - Fantasy Book Critic
- “Robopocalypse is an enthralling debut, don’t miss it.” - Grasping for the Wind
- “Recommended on a completely superficial, Michael Bay-ish level – just don’t take Robopocalypsetoo seriously.” - The Book Smugglers