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Publisher's Summary

Audible narration by Rosa Salazar (Alita: Battle Angel)

A video game developer becomes obsessed with a willful character in her new project, in a mind-bending exploration of what it means to be human by the New York Times bestselling author of Recursion.

Maxine was made to do one thing: die. Except the minor non-player character in the world Riley is building makes her own impossible decision - veering wildly off course and exploring the boundaries of the map. When the curious Riley extracts her code for closer examination, an emotional relationship develops between them. Soon Riley has all new plans for her spontaneous AI, including bringing Max into the real world. But what if Max has real-world plans of her own?

Blake Crouch’s Summer Frost is part of Forward, a collection of six stories of the near and far future from out-of-this-world authors. Each piece can be read or listened to in a single thought-provoking sitting.

©2019 Blake Crouch (P)2019 Brilliance Publishing, Inc., all rights reserved.

What the critics say

"Rosa Salazar provides a dead-on, almost eerie, performance of an AI in this short science fiction story...altering her performance as the AI refines and reinvents itself throughout the story. It's a startling evolution of character, driven home by Salazar’s transition from passive dialogue to gut-punching directness. The story challenges what it means to be human and gives sci-fi listeners some poignant moments to ponder long after the credits end." --AudioFile magazine

"…a sensational project...." --Spine Magazine

“This is exactly how I like my techno-anxiety.... Happy bingeing!" --Audible, an October Editors Pick 

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What listeners say about Summer Frost

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    5 out of 5 stars

Wow

Blake Crouch is a phenomenal writer. I was completely mesmerized by the story from start to finish. Is the concept new? No. Is it still terrifying as fuck? Yeah.

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  • DavidG
  • 2019-10-08

Sigh, How Many Times Have We Heard This Story?

*Yawn* Hmm, let's see, the sad, lonely human falling in love with a robot? The first time I came across that story was in the 1950's while reading Issac Asimov's "I, Robot". More recently, didn't some Hollywood star play a loser falling in love with Scarlett Johansson's voice, the voice of his AI personal assistant? Then there's the creation who turns on its creator story which goes back beyond even Frankenstein to some of the older golem tales and which is as recent as the latest Terminator movie. Sigh, how many more times must we hear these same stories? And make no mistake about it - "Summer Frost" is the same old story told yet again. The only new wrinkle Crouch adds is a particularly whingy and irritating nerd protagonist. He does throw in a bit of sophomoric philosophizing at the end in an apparent attempt to say something new but it's not. Just more of the same old, same old. I'll take either one of the first two Terminator movies over this waste of time any day.

6 people found this helpful

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  • Manoj Mahalingam
  • 2019-10-02

Nothing new...

The same tried and tested story around AI going rogue after gaining consciousness, the minor twist in the end notwithstanding.

Narration by Rosa Salazar was average at best and distracting at times.

4 people found this helpful

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  • BJ S
  • 2020-06-30

it made me think.

the reader was very good. would gladly listen to it again. would like the opportunity to discuss this with someone in the industry.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Audiobookaddict1
  • 2020-02-18

Blake Crouch is an enigma

I love what Blake Crouch writes. Not everything can be his best work but he puts his best work into everything he writes. He is so creative and so thoughtful with every sentiment that ends up on the page.

this novella explores some pretty standardized archetypes by today's standards however, he does it in a way that only Blake Crouch can. He gives it a spin of urgency and desperation, a technological nightmare teetering on the edge. He he does this every time he writes. I don't find this to be as exhilarating as Wayward Pines or as mind-bending as dark matter but it is still classic Blake Crouch. I stand in awe of his sheer creativity.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Linda
  • 2019-10-22

Max Is Not Human But Riley Is

Fascinating concept of a human AI developer, Riley, falling in love with her creation to the detriment of her marriage and everything else. She is obsessed with educating Max to think and behave like a human. Imagine her surprise when Max attempts to take over Riley and other humans. So far Max is living inside a protective space with access only to Riley. Riley does not know how far Max has developed on her own until it is too late. It is a look at how AI is created, then enhanced, and maybe it could take over the world. Think of the Rise of Machines from the movies. The narrator, Rosa Salazar, was excellent.

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  • Cathie
  • 2019-09-24

Enough

I agree wholeheartedly with the previous reviewer who said this is a political WOKE piece of propaganda. I normally love Blake Crouch, and I listen to this author and others like him purely for entertainment, not for an analysis of politically correct gender pronouns. Give it a rest. We're talking about AI, for Pete's sake. The narration was very good though.

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  • J. S. Harbour
  • 2019-09-18

inconsistent narration but extraordinary story

this is a really fascinating story which seemed a little bit too much like the film ex machina (including billionaire recluse alone in his house) but that's okay I enjoyed it anyway.

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  • David Alvo
  • 2021-10-11

Fascinating

and widely entertaining. Never write reviews, but had to recommend this one. Must read

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  • Joe
  • 2021-09-04

Cool future stuff

Cool coming age story that serves as a sort of warning for specific advancements, however, this warning is and will always be one that serves only those that are paying attention to the world as it advances forward. Well, for those who are thinking, creating, and doing.

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  • W. Richman
  • 2021-08-20

Cuts a little close to the bone...

The techie's worst nightmare. You follow an idea just to see where it will lead. When you arrive, you realize too late.... "Maybe that wasn't such a good idea after all..."