Simon & Schuster, out now
An account of the War between mankind and robots…
Yes, it does feel very much as if it’s been written with more than half an eye on the eventual screenplay, but Daniel Wilson’s fragmentary novel, made up of various people’s recollections of the prelude to the war, and its prosecution, more than holds up in its own right. In some ways it’s what the fourth Terminator movie storyline should have been: the way in which a computer intelligence (Archos) manages to control all the various machines which are so omnipresent in everyone’s lives and turns them against humanity.
Wilson’s characters draw from various walks of life, and of necessity there’s a degree of “small universe” about them – they’re all eventually connected in some way. Only very occasionally does the reader get jolted out of the story by a piece of information, or emotion, that doesn’t add up, but on the whole it’s a very effective way of telling a global tale.
Verdict: A chilling, fast-paced tale of the day after tomorrow. 8/10