A couple of months ago I was attacked on the street. If you’re not from Chicago, you probably think that has happened to me a lot in my twenty-five years of living here. No. First time. Had more trouble in San Francisco back in the 90s. I posted about my experience on Facebook and asserted something that I thought was obvious: some people have to be locked up. It doesn’t matter what the reasons for their violence is, even if the reason is “poverty” or “mental illness” they can’t be allowed to roam free. I was told I was “brave” for saying this. (For the record, I know lots of people who are poor and mentally ill and don’t violently attack random people on the street. It’s pretty f*K!ng demeaning to use that to excuse bad behavior.)
Ms. Burke is also from Chicago. She makes the same “brave” assertion in this book. She also has a hero who can’t read or write, but isn’t portrayed as an idiot–except by antagonists in this book. She’s taking on “credentialism,” which I also try to do in my writing. I hope that there might be a “Chicago School” of sci-fi emerging that doesn’t have time for elitism or making excuses for violent behavior.
This book is funny and touching, and it features AI that is just figuring itself out. If you liked the little AI ‘bots who fell in love with 6T9 in my books, I think you’ll enjoy this one.