While I enjoy science fiction, I'm not a die-hard reader of it. I kept seeing this book pop up in my recommendations, and I kept ignoring it each time I read the publisher's summary. It seemed like a generic plot and nothing notable. I suspect the author of the publisher's summary only read the first few chapters, as they didn't really seem to know what the book was about.
The story is interesting and fast-paced. In addition, Ray Porter is extremely talented and did an incredible job of delivering the story, as well as all the emotion and humor that went with it. I think this is one of his best performances.
I don't write reviews for books, but this one was good enough that I wanted to take the opportunity to potentially nudge someone else that might be on the fence about it.
345 of 358 people found this review helpful
I have been attempting to expand on the science fiction authors I read. I discovered this debut novel by Dennis E. Taylor and decided to try it. I try to read debut novels to support new authors. The idea of the story I found intriguing. A brilliant software engineer was hit by a car and died unexpectedly. He had requested his brain be frozen at his death. When he is revived a hundred years later, he discovers that his mind has been co-opted by a group of religious fanatics called FAITH. Bob’s mind is now the computer AI of a space probe sent out to explore the galaxy for a new planet to inhabit. Bob then creates more of himself to spread out around the universe looking for an inhabitable planet. It turns out two other groups are hunting for an inhabitable planet also and will do whatever it takes to achieve their goal.
The book is well written. I found the idea of the human mind in the role of a controlling AI fascinating. The characters are interesting; the plot well developed. There is humor, good dialog and the story is highly entertaining.
The book is nine and half hours long. Ray Porter does an excellent job narrating the book. This is an example of how a great narrator makes the story better. Porter is an actor and award-winning audiobook narrator.
76 of 80 people found this review helpful
This is a great story for the typical sci-fi story lover; especially someone who is familiar with 80's and 90's sci-fi TV references. The narrator does a great job playing multiple characters, using several different voices-the one from the Star Wars Admiral is awesome. I listened to this book and then went and saw Rogue One the same night and chuckled because the narrator could have been the actor on the screen. (if you listen to the book you'll now what I mean.) If you like books like Player One, Monster Hunters, Ancillary Justice, anything by John Scalzi, and TV shows like Battlestar Galactica, Dark Matter and The Expanse then I'm pretty sure you'll enjoy this book. And if you don't, Audible has that great return policy. I look forward to listening to the next book in the series!
9 of 9 people found this review helpful
So many Bobs, so little time --
If you love sci fi, you already know about this awesome book. It's a pretty original concept -- governments clone human-personality-infused-AIs and send them into space as self-replicating probes to find new planets for humans to inhabit. Some of the probes go insane, some turn into weapons of mass destruction, and some . . .
. . . well, Bob is different. A bit of an independent loaner with no political axe to grind, Bob sets about creating a 'world' HE can live in first! Still, the prime directive is all about replicating, so bring on the Bobs!
Ray Porter does an amazing job voicing the various Bobs -- and all the other characters in this book -- while the pop culture sci fi references provide opportunities for a few homages to beloved characters. The book would not have been as fun to listen to without him!
I. CAN. NOT. WAIT. FOR. BOOK TWO!
ALSO, ahem. Sorry. Also, here's a shout out to Jim the Impatient for the recommendation! Thanks big guy!
140 of 156 people found this review helpful
I had been skeptical whenever I saw this book recommended for me, as my general preference has been non-fiction. However, it was time for a change, and as reluctant as I was, the overwhelmingly glowing reviews here won me over. The plot itself is very attractive to me, being/controlling Von Neumann probes and all of the exploration and wonder that would come with that mission. The author has done an excellent job of keeping things interesting, realistic, and covering his bases in terms of the actual science involved and other issues that many would not think of initially. I never had a "this wouldn't happen in real life" moment, and I am a fairly skeptical person. Ray Porter does an excellent job bringing life and personality to the various characters, including having to do multiple versions/personalities of Bob.
As far as the main plot goes, it is outstanding. If your version of heaven is living forever, being able to duplicate yourself, and playing real time strategy games all day for high stakes in between diving into Wikipedia and Youtube for education and edification, I think this story will appeal to you. I was never bored, and plan to purchase the next 2 books. This was an outstanding purchase and one I would recommend to other Sci-Fi fans and Audible customers.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful
I'M GLAD TO SEE A BOB FACTORY IN OPERATION
This is what Science Fiction is meant to be. The fans for this book will be Legion. This is full of lots of space travel, exploring of planets, terraforming, discovery of aliens, science talk, colonization, and of course THE BOBS AND THE BOBIAN FEDERATION. I was reminded of THE MARTIAN, although not as funny, Frederik Pohl and James P. Hogan. There are some space fights, but those who love space and all the possibilities, will enjoy this most.
SO THIS IS LIKE ANDROMEDA STRAIN?
As usual, Ray Porter makes this even better.
ALL HAIL BOB!
250 of 284 people found this review helpful