Right here, I’m going to tell you the thing that immediately made me love this book. The real Zekiel is a rotten guy. He’s cheating on his wife, he’s cruel and violent – he combines the worst aspects of Timothy Dalton’s James Bond and Sterling Archer. Indestructible robots and a sleazy secret agent; I’m sold.
That would have been enough for me, but DUPLICATE goes to some really interesting places. Robot Dax struggles to make sense of his new reality, especially when he meets the real Dax. For human Dax, his job and family are nothing but a cover. For the robot, they’re his life. And when the robot Dax is shut down and real Dax has to live his own life, he’s terrible at it. Eventually, the Daxes have to work together, and there’s a brilliant mythology that comes into play involving multiple robot duplicates and the world’s first robot, the one that protected ancient Crete. There are doublecrosses and surprises, and the whole thing is awesome.