Isaac Asimov’s Robot City Book 4: Prodigy by Byron Cover

Robot City 4: Prodigy book cover

This review will most likely contain spoilers for any previous books in the series, read at your own risk.

Derec and Ariel (previously known as Katherine) finally were able to track down the cyborg known as Jeff Leong. The Human Medical Team of robots was able to repair Jeff’s body and place his brain back inside. They let Jeff use the escape pod Mandlebrot and Wolruf landed with to fly home and send for help if possible. Until then, they are all still stuck in Robot City.

This book revolves around a robotic renaissance that has emerged in Robot City. Derec and Ariel spot a huge new building that looks more like artwork than anything else. During their investigation they find robots that wonder what it is like to be human, comedians, artists, etc. In the midst of all this a robot is murdered and Derec must find the killer and figure out why these robots acting so differently. I’d say out of the series this is one of my favorite books because it reminds me a bit of the Bicentennial Man short story by Asimov.

1 thought on “Isaac Asimov’s Robot City Book 4: Prodigy by Byron Cover”

  1. In this fourth book of the Robot City series, the group of stranded travelers make an unlikely family. There is Derec with amnesia, Ariel with a deadly disease, Wolruf the alien, and Mandelbrot the robot made of spare parts. Things in Robot City take an interesting turn when robots start to form their own philosophies and stretch outside of their programmed duties. They start reasoning on their own and create art in many different ways.

    This part of the series was brilliantly written, and I loved the way Shakespeare was incorporated into this story. The personalities and struggles of the robots came to life, and at the end of the book I could not wait to start the next book.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Please prove you are a human * Time limit is exhausted. Please reload the CAPTCHA.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Related Post

Isaac Asimov’s Robots and Aliens Book 6: Humanity by Jerry OltionIsaac Asimov’s Robots and Aliens Book 6: Humanity by Jerry Oltion

Robots and Aliens Volume 3 book cover

This review will most likely contain spoilers for any previous books in the series, read at your own risk.

Humanity starts out with a very brief, and rather insufficient, summary of the events of the series. Derec, Ariel, Mandelbrot, Wolruf, Dr. Avery, and the three learning robots are on their way back to the original robot city. They are in for a big surprise when they enter orbit. As with previous books in this series we get to see a good portion of action, as well as discussion about what is meant to be human.

We do get to see how the whole series is tied together. For my taste, it seems that everything fits together a bit too nicely. Also, I was expecting a bit more closure toward the end. I was left with the feeling that yet another series or at least novel should fill in the gap between this series and the Tiedemann Trilogy (Mirage, Chimera, Aurora) which involves both Derec and Ariel. I’ll discuss this in more detail in my general Robots and Aliens review which will follow as I can’t do this without major spoilers for this last novel.

Timequake by Kurt VonnegutTimequake by Kurt Vonnegut

Timequake Book Cover

This book was my first experience with writing by Kurt Vonnegut. His writing, at least in this book, is very original and unconventional. The “Timequake” according to the dust jacket is an event where on February 13th, 2001, everyone is thrust back to February 17th, 1991. Vonnegut treats this as a contraction of the Universe, not simply time travel in the traditional sense. In many time travel stories, the characters look for ways “to put right what once went wrong,” a la Quantum Leap. Vonnegut doesn’t give the characters in this story that opportunity. Everyone is forced to live their lives on autopilot, doing the exact same things they did before, but with the knowledge of what was to come. (more…)

Renowned physicist Stephen Hawking died today at age 76Renowned physicist Stephen Hawking died today at age 76

When I learned that Stephen Hawking died, I have to admit my reaction was a bit selfish. I was disappointed that he wouldn’t be able to continue contributing to science, and that the world would be a worse off place without him. I didn’t think about how his close friends and family would be impacted. I was surprised about how sad I felt as well. I can’t say I’ve ever really felt a true pang of sadness upon learning of a celebrity death. Nobody should be surprised that he died, given his long history of health problems, but nevertheless, it was shocking. So why did I react this way now? I browsed through numerous news articles and posts throughout the day today without much reaction, but I felt sad again while reading through BBC’s article on his death, and again writing this post. 

Maybe it has to do with recently reading the article “The Beginning of Time” that recently popped up in my news feed. I don’t think I could truly fully understand all of his theories, but I think his explanation here was clear enough to get a good idea. I’ve had The Theory of Everything: The Origin and Fate of the Universe audiobook on my backlog to listen to. I guess I’ll have to bump it up to next in my queue. I was already thinking about taking a break from Sci-Fi / Fantasy soon, so this makes my decision really easy.

Goodbye Stephen! Whatever the reasons, I’m truly sad you’re gone. I’m sure you will be never be forgotten by humanity, assuming we don’t destroy ourselves.