Deep Learning by Ren Warom is the second of four novellas in which different authors explore what robots might dream of. Do androids dream of electric sheep? In this novella, Niner only works because of a glitch. Through its various ‘life’ stages it fights internal insanity caused by the information overload from permanent entanglement with the minds of all who commanded him at some point, while being limited in its communication to commands and responses. It seems to work well, mostly because the internal vortex is invisible to humans. Set in a post-climate-urgency world where everyone fights over the last bits of livable land in the USA.
Stay away from the lonely dark, is the last advice Ingmar gets before lift-off. AIs used to run space ships, until one of them lost its mind killing crew and passengers. So AIs are taken out of service and replaced with human minds that can deal well with being alone. Not enough to cope with The Lonely Dark though. Nice novella.
Sherlock Holmes meets Silent Witness meets Hellboy down in the sewers underneath a dystopian city, spiring above what used to be Denver. With extensive bioware enhancements, genetic modifications, and nanotech tattoos. Coil, is a dark, gritty, gory novel.
This book picks up a month after Escapology, and forms a whole with it. Virology is a cyberpunk novel in which your avators turn out to be created from essential parts of your identity, so when someone locks them all up in the Slip, a VR internet, you feel amputated. The protagonist has a biological piece of software taking over its implanted harddrive and then his brain and body, while chasing down the antagonists with his gang. All ends well, just knee deep in gore. There’s something in Warom’s writing, an edginess and friction that keeps me reading.
So I bought her other published work and read that too.
Ren Warom hasn’t maintained her own online presence, other than Twitter, after 2018 it seems, and her Instagram account since the spring of 2019 (though I did take a few reading tips from the book images she posted there before).