Monday, August 20, 2012

vN - Madeline Ashby

Since I saw my first Ashby story in Flurb Fitting a New Suit I was impressed. Her first novel is no letdown and also very good. In a future where artificial humans produced from a template are quite common, many of them have relationships and even marriages with humans. They are also capable of producing offspring from raw materials. One of these is the main protagonist for this book. A girl whose growth has been kept deliberately slow when artificials are capable of very fast growth maturity if given enough food material. When one of her line attacks her mother at her school she grows up fast, hunger pangs leading her to eat her attacker, being her grandmother. So, arrest and possible execution in her future leads her to going on the run with another vN, an eco model that is shades of Walter Jon Williams Green Leopard Plague with a photosynthesis ability and a penchant for serial breeding. All very interesting and highly polished novel as the young vN is pursued and deals with literal inner conflict with her consumed grandmother and externally with her clade group along with the human authorities. 4 out of 5

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