Saturday, June 9, 2018

Review: Made to Kill

Made to Kill Made to Kill by Adam Christopher
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Ray Electromatic is the last existing robot who works as a private detective and assassin. When he is hired to find and kill a missing actor, he soon becomes entangled in a web of communists and mind control. Will Ray get his man and get his money?

Way back in the fall of 2016, I visited Goodreads headquarters and this book was in the goodie bag they gave me. Now, almost two years later, I have finally read it.

Taking place in an alternate version of the 1960s, one where robots were created and all but one, Ray Electormatic, were deactivated, Made to Kill is a Chandleresque tale of murder, lies, death, and dirty communists. Ray Electromatic operates as a detective and an assassin with the added caveat that he has to recharge every day and have his memory uploaded and erased. A supercomputer named Ava is his secretary/boss. Sound good yet?

Born out of imagining what a Raymond Chandler science fiction tale would be like, Made to Kill hits a lot of the Raymond Chandler beats. There are femme fatales, shady actors and government types, and Adam Christopher's Hollywood is just as filled with phonies and psychopaths as Chandlers. Ray's internal dialogue is peppered with dark humor and he approaches detection with the same grace, or lack thereof, of Philip Marlowe.

The story folds back in on itself a few times like some kind of tesseract. It was an engaging read but I wasn't ass over tea kettle over it. For a bad ass robot, Ray Electromatic didn't actually do a whole helluva lot besides drive around and he was tied up for a lot of the final portion of the book.

Made to Kill was an entertaining read for a rainy Saturday afternoon. I'm not sure I'll be sticking around for future installments, though. Three out of five stars.

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