Paperback, 320 pages

Published July 2, 2019 by Minotauro, MINOTAURO.

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5 stars (1 review)

When anything can be owned, how can we be free

Earth, 2144. Jack is an anti-patent scientist turned drug pirate, traversing the world in a submarine as a pharmaceutical Robin Hood, fabricating cheap scrips for poor people who can’t otherwise afford them. But her latest drug hack has left a trail of lethal overdoses as people become addicted to their work, doing repetitive tasks until they become unsafe or insane.

Hot on her trail, an unlikely pair: Eliasz, a brooding military agent, and his robotic partner, Paladin. As they race to stop information about the sinister origins of Jack’s drug from getting out, they begin to form an uncommonly close bond that neither of them fully understand.

And underlying it all is one fundamental question: Is freedom possible in a culture where everything, even people, can be owned?

9 editions

Another wonderful one ...

5 stars

Loved The Terraformers, so picked up Autonomous. I liked the former more, but it was such a high bar that Autonomous was still excellent. Different, though related themes. Terraformers is environmental where Autonomous is health care / pharmaceutical, but both tell deeply compelling future narratives about attempts to create survival and thriving in the face of terrible, dystopian, and yet believable futures. Appreciate wrestling with parallels between human freedoms and post-human freedoms, with both taking place in the context of capitalism that is recognizable today... On to Newitz's next work.