“The Alchemy of Stone,” or, “I’m fine with clockwork AI but apparently compact videotape is where I draw the line“

Ekaterina Sedia
This was a very… interesting book. And I say this because, beyond that, I’m not sure how I feel about it. I didn’t really enjoy the plot, but I found everything else fascinating – the world in which it takes place has a weird set of rules unlike any I’ve seen before, and it fits well with the unique main character.
And it’s interesting that, despite my interest in this sort of thing, I haven’t actually read many books where the narrator is a machine. That’s the real twist to this book – and no, it’s not a spoiler, because they’re clear about what they are – and it plays remarkably well. It’s done remarkably well, too – the perspective is slightly off of what you’d get with a human narrator, and I think the author did a wonderful job of using that difference to tell the story they wanted to tell.
So I suppose I’m comfortable recommending it – as I said, I didn’t actually like what all happened with the plot, but the storytelling was interesting enough that it held my interest the whole time, and I do think reading it was a good use of my time. Have a read.