Publish date- 1999.
(A Brief) Synopsis:
In a world you might struggle to comprehend, to begin with, a series of pleasure robots have been created. When Jane, a wealthy young woman who doesn't really realise how lacking her life is, first sees Silver, she tries hard not to be taken in. But soon it's too hard to deny her feelings.
What I thought:
I have a lifelong debt to Glaiz, who got me onto Tanith Lee and recommended me this as the first of her books to read. She warned me Jane, the protagonist, was a hard one to connect with, and I kept that in mind when I started reading. I anticipated that I might have issues.
Instead? I was swept away, reading fast the story that was bizarre and dreamy and almost impossible. It's an odd idea, this story of a girl who falls in love with a pleasure robot; it seemed unthinkable, and the blurb put me off, too- it seems, to me, like it describes a completely different story, in parts, and my annoyances with Jane early on were, I think, rooted in my misjudgement of what her story would be.
In many aspects Jane is a difficult character. She's fragile and spends a lot of her time crying, and she's got this slightly odd, lost feeling to her narrative. She's also rash and her decisions aren't always made in the best frame of mind, but... I enjoyed it a lot. Not until later did I grow to actually realise this and like Jane, but I didn't have a huge problem with her, either. She was different and, although she could've been annoying, she instead carried her story with this note of honesty. However childish she was, she easily sustained her own story and that is a dream.
Silver, the pleasure robot, was such an odd creation, and I did, for a long time, feel incredibly uneasy around his character- he felt dangerous, like he was so autonomous and had a kind of crazy murderer feel about him, but I grew so fond of his character. It seems to odd: she falls in love with a robot, a real, full metal robot. But that's the very best part, because it makes you look differently and question what defines life and love and reason it out. It's distinct in plot, narrative, and feel from any other book I've read.
Rating: Excellent/Big explosion MIND BLOWN.
I use the word "gorgeous" perhaps more than I should, nut this was. And it was odd and complex and entirely different. I loved it. It was beautiful.