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Hannah’s Pick of the Week: Annie Bot by Sierra Greer

An image of the Annie Bot cover, with shades of pink and magenta interspersed with white

 

“Is this a test?” she asks. “For me?” 

“I’d say it’s more for us,” he says gently. “Or me, maybe. You’ve been good Annie. You’ve been wonderful, actually. It’s been over a month since you were grounded. And even that was for a mistake. I ought to give you more credit.” 

– Sierra Greer, Annie Bot, pg. 77

Annie is a woman of the future – kind, curious, beautiful and made of a bespoke AI neural network designed to please her human owner, Doug. Her libido, a metric scale from one to ten, is set to his whim and when Doug’s displeased for any reason, Annie feels an unimaginable physical pain deep within her computer intelligence unit.  

Essentially, she’s the perfect girlfriend. 

But though she was created for and by Doug (with an eerily similar design to Doug’s human ex-wife), Annie is somehow…different from the other Cuddle Bunnies, Abigails, Hunks and other AI companions created to serve, salve, and seduce their human counterparts. She’s never left the ‘safety’ of Doug’s apartment, yet she studies her own programming in secret. Annie explores the actions and interactions that make one human, a trait that Doug claims to love most about her. But human women are imperfect, and Annie starts to realize the cost of creating her own inner world comes with startling consequences. 

In equal parts terrifying and humanizing, Annie Bot is a sci-fi investigation into feminism, power, relationships, and what it means to feel (and be) alive. A fast-paced and engrossing read, there were times in which I needed to read through my fingers because I was so afraid of what was going to happen next; the suspense had me in a choke-hold. Greer crafts a timely, enraging narrative that’s filled with plenty of philosophical ideas to chew on. 

If you’re interested in the similar themes of power and pleasure in Piglet by Lottie Hazel or Fruit of the Dead by Rachel Lyon, or if you want to read a book that author Sheena Patel has called “Barbie for girls who like Aphex Twin,” then I recommend Annie Bot

Image of author Sierra Greer, a white woman with oval glasses wearing a blue shirt
                                                                              Photo by HarperCollins Publisher

 

Categories: Books and More

Tags: Books and More

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