- The Good: Fun and engaging
- The Bad: Simple characters and plot geared towards tween
- The Literary: Great use of flashbacks inside a frame story
When 12-year-old Eve is picked up for shoplifting, she tells her entire life story during an interrogation with Petra Amis from Child Welfare Services. She’s a robot, born to no human parents. Instead, she was created by and escaped from Eden Laboratories who are viciously hunting her down.
As with the similarly titled Interview with the Vampire, the frame story of Interview with the Robot is a skeleton on which to hang the detailed flashbacks of Eve’s time in Eden, until it isn’t. I really like this Audible Original full-cast performance, with all it’s narrators and foley sounds. It’s definitely geared toward middle-grade or tween kids, but the story is very fun and entertaining, even for adults!
The science fiction, although simplified for its audience, is believable and well explained. Eve begins as an AI housed in a cube with a microphone, speakers, and a camera to the outside world. All the time and buildup to the construction of her skeleton, synthetic skin, and artificial pupils creates a satisfying turn when Eve finally gets a body. And even with such a short run time, about 4 hours, the motivation of all the characters are clear, even the antagonist.
With topics ranging from artificial intelligence to friendship to what really defines a family, I highly recommend this book for pre-teens interested in science fiction!