Artificial Condition

Narrated by: Kevin R. Free
Series: Murderbot Diaries, Book 2
Length: 3 hrs and 21 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (3,696 ratings)

$14.95/month after 30 days. Cancel anytime.

OR
In Cart

Publisher's Summary

The follow-up to the hugely popular science fiction action-adventure All Systems Red

Artificial Condition continues The Murderbot Diaries, a science fiction series that tackles questions of the ethics of sentient robotics. It appeals to fans of Westworld, Ex Machina, Ann Leckie's Imperial Raadch series, or Iain M. Banks' Culture novels. The main character is a deadly security droid that has bucked its restrictive programming and is balanced between contemplative self-discovery and an idle instinct to kill all humans. "As a heartless killing machine, I was a complete failure."

It has a dark past - one in which a number of humans were killed. A past that caused it to christen itself "Murderbot." But it has only vague memories of the massacre that spawned that title, and it wants to know more.

Teaming up with a Research Transport vessel named ART (you don't want to know what the "A" stands for), Murderbot heads to the mining facility where it went rogue.

What it discovers will forever change the way it thinks.

©2018 Martha Wells (P)2018 Recorded Books

Featured Article: 10 Female Fantasy & Sci-Fi Authors for You to Explore


A guy’s genre? Get real! Led by grand dame Octavia E. Butler, women rock at writing epic science fiction and thrilling fantasy. Fantasy and science fiction have historically been dominated by men, perpetuating the myth that they are male genres with predominantly male writers and listeners. Nothing could be further from the truth, as these famous female fantasy and science fiction authors prove. Speculative genres are for everyone.

Editor's Pick

Punchy and fun Hugo finalistl
"The first book in Martha Wells’s Murderbot Diaries series, All Systems Red, was recently named a 2018 Hugo Award finalist. It’s an excellent story and a great place to start if sarcastic quickwitted robots are your thing. With Artificial Condition, Wells has seized the opportunity to flush out Murderbot’s background and delivered another punchy and super fun addition to what is quickly becoming one of my favorite series. Kevin R. Free has a great approach to the performance as well; with his emphasis on Murderbot’s laid-back sardonic voice and perspective, never has a robot sounded so human."
Michael D., Audible Editor

What members say
Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    2,622
  • 4 Stars
    876
  • 3 Stars
    169
  • 2 Stars
    21
  • 1 Stars
    8
Performance
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    2,523
  • 4 Stars
    704
  • 3 Stars
    117
  • 2 Stars
    19
  • 1 Stars
    7
Story
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    2,338
  • 4 Stars
    819
  • 3 Stars
    177
  • 2 Stars
    20
  • 1 Stars
    9

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Fun, short, overpriced.

I was sucked into buying the second one because I liked the first one, and it was slightly on sale. But even at $6.99, it was too much money for too few hours. These need to be combined into one, maybe two books. I'm not buying a third one till audible makes them cheaper and neither should anyone else.

23 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Fun, but too expensive...

Books in series have average of 3 hours... Probably will wait for an omnibus to finish series.

33 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

This series should be one book

Not worth spending multiple credits on this decent books series. The stories are basically short stories and should be combined into 1 book. Upset I wasted credits on these books as they are mediocre compared to many other in the same genre.

60 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

4 stars for story..

One star for value for me money.

Another great Murderbot story, but considering it price it’s way too short. Tor in it’s infinite wisdom appears to have decided to price gouge fans of All Systems Red with the sequels.

I would recommend patience and wait for the inevitable anthology release down the line.

Narration was good.

13 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Awesome but painfully short.

I love the series but, to echo past reviews, it really should be one or two books.

16 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Murderbot is awesome!

Another adventure with our quirky and privacyminded hero. Sarcasm and snark galore, along with touching moments of humanity. Highly recommend ed.

7 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Good but short

This was well written but too short. The characters were not really developed and may not be worth the cost.

19 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Way too short. But I'm hooked.

I'm endlessly salty about the length of the books in this series.

That being my only complaint should be interpreted as a raving recommendation but I honestly can't imagine loving another character enough to put up with this.

Overall 3 stars, 1 for every hour I got to spend in the head of the most loveable murderbot imaginable.

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Fun and fast!

Really enjoyed this sequel -- if the first one was more of an action-adventure plot, this one takes an almost noir-ish turn, as Murderbot has to deal with some of the issues in its history. There's more of a focus on self-knowledge, even when it isn't entirely welcome. The back and forth between ART and Murderbot is wonderful (and laugh out loud funny at points).

Very much looking forward to the next one in the series!

8 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

As before, MORE ADVENTURES PLEASE!

Once again the author wrote in an admirable style. She put in everything that needed to be there and took out everything that did not need to be there. No extra fluff for side characters that mean nothing, nothing added to simply increase bulk. Great story, had to read (listen to) the whole thing at once.

But it was so enjoyable, as the first book was, that I have to ask that next time perhaps the author could give us a longer story just to extend the experience. But don’t let some editor make you put in side stories, irrelevant descriptions or other silly filler. Keep the same voice and writing style, Martha!

Her writing and inventiveness makes me want to immediately reread / re-listen to both Murderbot books. It’s been a long time since I’ve done that with any sci-fi.

Looks like we have a new stellar writer here, giving us a winning and fresh character in unpredictable new situations.

5 people found this helpful

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for paul sparks
  • paul sparks
  • 05-15-18

More of the murderbot saga

I really enjoy this series of stories but find it hard to call these novels as they are more short stories / novellas and as such should be priced accordingly, I bought the first story on amazon and paid nearly £13 for a very short albeit enjoyable book, this time I purchased the story on Audible (obviously) and I will purchase the other stories in the murderbot diaries in the same manner as it’s more economical, griping aside the stories are well worth a listen 😀

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Jacqueline
  • Jacqueline
  • 05-09-18

Small but perfectly formed

Free to follow its own desires, Murderbot hitches a ride on an AI survey ship ART, and heads out to try to find the truth about its bloody past.
Along the way it forms it’s first friendship , rescues a hapless group of humans from deadly corporate games, acquires some facial hair and demonstrates why you really shouldn’t make it angry!
Funny and touching by turns, without sentimentality.
The reader adds to the depth of the story, beautiful performance.
I hope the series continues.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for S. Clarke
  • S. Clarke
  • 05-10-20

Good but short

Really enjoying these, but disappointed you have to use 1 credit for a 3 hour novella, hence 4 stars.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Arzo Arsalan
  • Arzo Arsalan
  • 05-01-20

better than the first book

Very enjoyable. It's more of a dark comedy than a thriller. I would recommend this book to my friends.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Cyberpunk
  • Cyberpunk
  • 04-30-20

Enjoyable

More Sec unit fun. I found it well presented and enjoyable. For me the story lacked a bit of substance.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for AvidReader
  • AvidReader
  • 07-31-19

First syllable of each para is missing.

Very offputting from the great story and narration. I would like my credit back please.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Ian
  • Ian
  • 06-13-19

superb.

An AI rogue Murderbot helping humans retrieve some stolen software and also find out more of its own history. It has help from another unit

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for D. Marsh
  • D. Marsh
  • 07-06-18

Good and well narrated, very short though

Not worth a whole credit due to short length. Nice story and from a robot perspective.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Kindle Customer
  • Kindle Customer
  • 02-20-19

Good but way too short

I didn't think toy could get a shorter story than the first info the series but this one seemed even shorter. It reads liked a chapter from a large book but it's going to be a very expressive book if you buy them all.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for emmoff
  • emmoff
  • 06-04-18

Fabulous sequel

I loved, loved, loved the first instalment, Rogue Protocol and the highly anticipated book two does not disappoint.
Human shy and weary but hooked on the escapism of soap operas, Murderbot reluctantly befriends ART, a research transport ship. Their interactions are quite hilarious and their bonding over episodes of Sanctuary Moon especially so. Murderbot, a once rogue killer does not remember or understand the circumstances that made it kill. ART wants to help, which means Murderbot gets a private security job sans face mask. A Sec Unit pretending to be human helping young, out of their depths, scientists in a diabolical situation. Murderbot is all heart and then - Bam Bam, what moves!
I could not recommend this series enough. Short but packed with goodness. Worth every cent. I bought the kindle deal - book and narration.
Great narration too btw. Young Adult.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Ishy Neville
  • Ishy Neville
  • 06-17-20

Beautiful work all around

Martha Wells creates another engaging story around our favourite Murderbot. A character more intriguing and showing more integrity than many.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Caleb
  • Caleb
  • 05-29-20

So so good.

This was perhaps the best thing my ears have heard in years. I highly recommend this. Hopefully there's a few more on the way.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Kym
  • Kym
  • 03-07-20

Murderbot is adorable

Why you should listen to the Murderbot Diaries?
For all the reasons you fall in love with your other favourite authors. First off, Murderbot is...is it wrong to call a socially awkward, tv addicted security robot adorable? Maybe. But true none the less.
And then there the other stuff, humour (constant) plot (tight) emotional feels (bucket loads) and good writing (had that too).
The narration for the audio novel is perfect.
Do yourself a favour and listen.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Anonymous User
  • Anonymous User
  • 10-05-19

I liked the first better, still a great listen.

Great, more from the MurderBot. Keen to see what it does next? Thanks for the ride.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Craig McSpellcheck
  • Craig McSpellcheck
  • 04-20-19

Intresting and funny.

Love the conflict between chaticters, and the internal dialogue. Short but worth the purchase. Entertaining.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for SG
  • SG
  • 09-18-18

A good story exploring the nature of sentience.

A good story looking at the experience of sentient beings. Are they human? Should they be equal?

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for THOMAS
  • THOMAS
  • 09-16-18

Second in series offers further delights

After listening to the first in the Murderbot series, I was quite prepared to be let down by this sequel. However, it turned out to be every bit as interesting and entertaining as the first. Showing character development in robots has always been something difficult in sci-fi; even Iain M Banks, with his culture series, struggled at times in how to show development in both his drones and AI "minds".
Martha Wells' solution is to have a central robotic character which/who is a "construct", part robot and part human. Where others, in particular Neal Asher, have worked the border between the human and the robotic, Ms Wells has gone the other direction, to the border between the half-robot and the "augmented" human.
The result is a surprising and welcome re-personalisation of robots and AIs in general. We're back into the creepy and yet fascinating world of the HAL 9000.
The writing is backed up by another fine performance by Kevin Free as narrator, whose laconic style suits this science fiction series very well, as it manages to convey both the humour and the cynicism of a central character who is a kind of half-outsider observer of human behaviour.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Tim
  • Tim
  • 05-21-18

Short and kinda boring. No where near as good 1st

Not going to read the others. This felt like half an adventure and didn't really expand on the previous book. Yeah you see a space station or two but it all felt a bit lazy