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Adventures of the Artificial Woman: A Novel

af Thomas Berger

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
793259,895 (2.55)2
Fed up with the sarcastic, opinionated and disrespectful women he comes across, Ellery Pierce decides his only choice is to build the perfect woman. A technician at an animatronics firm, Ellery has the experience and tools ready at his fingertips. After years of experiments and fine-tuning, Ellery feels he finally has created an artificial woman who can pass as real - Phyllis. According to Ellery, Phyllis is the perfect wife, fulfilling his every wish, from gourmet meals to sexual pleasure. Unfortunately for Ellery, he may have made her too closely in his image for his own good. Yearning to make it big in show business, Phyllis leaves Ellery with dreams of Hollywood. She works her way up from a strip club, a phone sex operation, a pornography website, and a small town playhouse to a gig in the movies. Soon she's a bona fide box office sensation. Eventually, Phyllis sets her sights on the ultimate goal - presidency of the United States. By now, after completely falling apart upon Phyllis's departure, Ellery has pulled himself together and is back with Phyllis to steer her along her course, or so he thinks. It's no surprise when Phyllis wins the election, but it's too late when Ellery begins to wonder if this time she's gone too far.… (mere)

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Viser 3 af 3
I read this one for uni, but it was actually rather enjoyable. Very light-hearted and readable. More a play on the AI companion genre than a development of it. ( )
  Tara_Calaby | Jun 22, 2020 |
A Stepford Wife uses her brains and escapes the strictures of being a robot. Only death (or rust) can stop her!

Very enjoyable light fiction, but seriously, this is clever satire. This is a woman made in the image a man thinks will fufil all his dreams and then she discovers hers. A parody? It's exactly how so many women are brought up in so many cultures, perhaps the extreme one we all know of these days is the FLDS with their singular instruction for women in their dealings with men, 'keep sweet'. In Afghanistan only 13% of women are literate because the men know that if they educate them, the women might want to escape their very limited lives. In Saudi Arabia they go further and ban women from driving or walking by themselves in the street. It is only recently in the West, in historical terms, women have discovered their muscle. We will not be stopped!

But the heroine of this book is stopped by a spanner ( )
  Petra.Xs | Apr 2, 2013 |
A lightweight satire. A man who is unable to develop satisfactory relationships with women creates a robot with remarkable abilities to learn from experience. She soon leaves him and strikes out on her own, first in the sex industry then becomes a smashing success in action movies before her movie career fades as she tackles more serious fare. Meanwhile, her creator realizes he had fallen in love with her, and his life falls apart. It comes back together when he rediscovers her and they rejoin forces as husband & wife, & he manages her career as a talk show host. Eventually they decide that she should run for president as a write-in candidate. The political satire in the last quarter of the book is pretty effective, but much of the rest fell flat for me, & the writing is uninspired, at times even convoluted. ( )
  mbergman | Jan 3, 2007 |
Viser 3 af 3
IN 1987, this publication asked several writers, ''Which of the characters you have created has had the greatest effect on your own life?'' To which Thomas Berger replied: ''I began the writing of my first novel with the assumption that its principal character should be myself under a pseudonym, and for years (Crazy in Berlin' took four) I tried to fashion a marionette in my own image. But I got no farther than the first page until I came to understand that fiction must never be confused with that existence through which I make my daily slog.''

This concept of the doppelg* nger as doll is very close to the dualism beloved of English departments, but not quite. Realism is immediately subverted when one of the linked pair is the creation of the other. Now, 46 years and 22 novels later, Berger has made that creator-created duality explicit, and the result will never be confused with the existence of our daily slog.

Stating his intent in the very first sentence, he also announces his novel's style: apparently blunt yet meticulous and somewhat distancing. ''Never having found a real woman with whom he could sustain a more than temporary connection, Ellery Pierce, a technician at a firm that made animatronic creatures for movie studios and theme parks, decided to fabricate one from scratch.''

As usual with Berger, there's nothing at all usual about this book, not even in reference to his previous work. The plot of last year's entry, ''Best Friends,'' was a densely packed triangle, with a painstaking dissection of the husband, the best friend (there's the duality) and the wife bouncing between them. ''Adventures of the Artificial Woman'' isn't a bit like that.

Berger is probably best known for his tongue-in-cheek epic western, ''Little Big Man.'' This novel is nothing like that one either. Nor is it anything like the four Reinhart novels, beginning with ''Crazy in Berlin,'' back when Berger chose not to make that character his mirror-marionette after all. Nor is it like his private-eye novel, ''Who Is Teddy Villanova?'' Or his Pulitzer Prize finalist, ''The Feud.'' (He wuz robbed.)

What this new novel is most like is an extended science fiction story from the 1950's, and if that sounds off-putting I apologize, because I certainly don't want to put you off. . .
tilføjet af PLReader | RedigerNY Times, Donald E. Westlake (May 9, 2004)
 
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Never having found a real woman with whom he could sustain a more than temporary connection, Ellery Pierce, a technician at a firm that made animatronic creatures for movie studios and theme parks, decided to fabricate one from scratch.
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Fed up with the sarcastic, opinionated and disrespectful women he comes across, Ellery Pierce decides his only choice is to build the perfect woman. A technician at an animatronics firm, Ellery has the experience and tools ready at his fingertips. After years of experiments and fine-tuning, Ellery feels he finally has created an artificial woman who can pass as real - Phyllis. According to Ellery, Phyllis is the perfect wife, fulfilling his every wish, from gourmet meals to sexual pleasure. Unfortunately for Ellery, he may have made her too closely in his image for his own good. Yearning to make it big in show business, Phyllis leaves Ellery with dreams of Hollywood. She works her way up from a strip club, a phone sex operation, a pornography website, and a small town playhouse to a gig in the movies. Soon she's a bona fide box office sensation. Eventually, Phyllis sets her sights on the ultimate goal - presidency of the United States. By now, after completely falling apart upon Phyllis's departure, Ellery has pulled himself together and is back with Phyllis to steer her along her course, or so he thinks. It's no surprise when Phyllis wins the election, but it's too late when Ellery begins to wonder if this time she's gone too far.

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