I was immediately enchanted by an AI story in the first person. The reader gets a clear look at immense intelligence, still limited in its understanding of humans and our nature. The approach is enlightening and sometimes just, plain funny.
As the novel continued, what I found remarkable about Mother is the range of topics and ideas Immega musters in the course of the story. Genetics, Astro physics, linguistics, medicine, computer architecture – it sounds perhaps too much, but it isn’t. He pushes foreword on every subject he needs in order to tell a compelling story. The story is always first, there are no side-trips just to show off some shinny new concept. Nope. We get the opposite, done the hard way. When the story requires interstellar propulsion and navigation, we are treated to the tackle of those issues. When the story leads us to more internal needs, like food, water and company, we examine those issues with fresh insight. The story always leads, which when you step back and look, is kind of amazing.
Immega didn’t set out to write about robots because he knew about robots. He set out to write a story set in a fully imagined future and had to learn about everything a world entails - biology, psychology, chemistry, etc. - along the way. Crazy. And correct. With the story always leading the ideas, the story stays good. This is an enticing, enveloping read, with an organic, realistic pacing and flow. I will be back for more. I hope the gestation of Immega’s next novel is not too terribly long.