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Artificial Absolutes by Mary Fan

Saturday, August 1, 2015
book review, science fiction, AI, Jane Colt series, On My Kindle

Devin Colt seems to have it all; he is working his way up in the family business, Quasar Bank Corporation, and met the girl of his dreams, Sarah DeHaven, less than a year ago. However, underneath the veneer of accomplishment and ambition lies a rebellious nature, a criminal past, and connections with seedy citizens.


I was given a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. 

On the other hand Devin's sister, Jane Colt, is miserable; her dreams to be a famous composer were crushed, and she forces herself to work a menial and tedious job within the family business. The only bright spot in her life is a young Via priest, Adam. Despite her assertions that the Absolute Being does not exist, Adam and Jane were able to cultivate a friendship that has the potential to develop into something more.

Sarah DeHaven is an up and coming singer on the verge of fame. Acting on impulse, Devin asks Sarah to marry him. Sarah's reaction to the proposal scares him and makes him suspicious. He reaches out to his seedy connections to determine whether or not his suspicions about Sarah are correct, and finds himself in the middle of a conspiracy orchestrated by a mastermind known as "No Name" when he discovers Sarah's true nature.

After a miserable day at work, Jane decides to drop by Adam's dorm at the seminary. She arrives just in time to see Adam being kidnapped by robots, and finds herself running for her life. After narrowly escaping her automated pursuers, she reports the kidnapping to the authorities; however, someone covered up the kidnapping and the authorities think that Jane is crazy. When Devin realizes that Sarah's true nature and Adam's disappearance might be connected, he decides to reveal his findings to his father. During the discussion in his father's office, the office's automated defense system is activated and Devin's father is shot.

Realizing that he is being set up by whoever is behind Sara's true nature and Adam's disappearance, Devin decides to make a run for it on his own. Realizing that her brother plans to escape off-world to unravel No Name's plans, Jane insists upon being included because the conspiracy has affected her and the two of them embark on a journey that will ultimately reveal who No Name is; not realizing how far No Name's influence extends.


If you have read other reviews for Artificial Absolutes, you may have noticed that a lot of them focus on Jane as the "leading" protagonist. I disagree with that assertion; Jane played a pivotal role in this novel, but so did Devin. Don't get me wrong, Jane's creative thinking got the duo out of some pretty tough scrapes and she capably held her own in fights; however, Devin's connections and experience also played an equally important role in the novel. I think their strengths and weaknesses create a superb balance, and I did not notice that the story was as focused on Jane as some of the reviews might lead you to believe.


Artificial Absolutes by Mary Fan challenges readers to define sentience while entertaining them with appealing characters and action-packed twists. I felt that the characters were very developed, and I liked how Fan blended the characters' back stories into the story line to keep up the fast pace of the story rather than interrupting the story to flesh out the characters. I enjoyed how Fan asked philosophical questions in the book; she presented both sides of the argument effortlessly without forcing her opinion down readers' throats.


I found Artificial Absolutes to be a delightful read, and I think that it is comparable to I, Robot by Isaac Asimov with its philosophy and action. I am definitely looking forward to reading the next book in the Jane Colt series.


Artificial Absolutes, Jane Colt series, science fiction, book review, On My Kindle
Photo courtesy of maryfan.com
If you would like to know more about Mary Fan and her books, head over to her website. Mary Fan's website not only showcases her books, reviews for her books, and abut it also features the songs that you see in her books. After you have checked out everything that her website has to offer, check out her blog, Zigzag Timeline.

Zigzag Timeline contains sneak peeks of covers for upcoming books; articles about reading, writing, and publishing; and features Mary Fan's reviews of other authors' works. If you would like to hang out with Mary on social media, you can follow her on Facebook; catch her on Twitter; or visit her on Goodreads.

Enjoy!