Artificial Condition

Artificial Condition is the second book in Martha Wells’ Murderbot Diaries series. It follows the adventure of an artificial construct, a thing that’s mostly machine but not entirely. In this book, Murderbot makes friends with a giant transport bot and travels back to the place where it gained its freedom, and also fractured its conscience. The past can be a dark place, but sometimes all we can do is face it.

Now one thing to keep in mind is this is the second book in the series, so you really should start by diving into this one. Go read the first book, All Systems Red, as it’s also and excellent read. If you liked the first book, you’ll definitely want to check this one out. It’s not a full length novel, as it comes in at just 160 pages, thus making this a novella. But it’s a meaty novella with a nice hardcover binding (if you buy the physical book). This one picks up with the adventures of Murderbot as it sets its course and derives a purpose. The mission – return to the place where it’s governor malfunctioned and it killed all its employers. The place of the massacre. The trick is Murderbot doesn’t quite remember where the massacre happened, but going back and finding the answers on what really happened is something it has to do before it can move on with its life.

The trip to the old mine leads to a new friend. The friend is a very powerful AI that belongs to a trasnport ship. Murderbot nicknames the bot ART (Asshole Research Transport) as the ship has a bit of a blunt personality. Murderbot offers it some media — in other words a bunch of TV shows it has downloaded — in exchange for safe trasnport. As they watch shows and do some bonding, ART agrees to help Murderbot on its mission. This in turns leads to a contract with some humans in order to gain access to the mine, and of course there’s trouble along the way. But trouble means action, fun, and some drama. It makes for a great read.

As the second book in this series, Artificial Condition keeps things interesting and entertaining. I’m really enjoying these novellas and can’t wait to read the rest. If you like robots and sci-fi, this is definitely a series to check out. Plus it won’t eat up too much of your time.

I give Artificial Condition a five out of five metal bikinis.

You can check out Martha Well’s official website for purchase links and excerpts for the books in the series.

Reviewed By: Skuldren for Roqoo Depot.
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