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Lovelock  By  cover art

Lovelock

By: Orson Scott Card,Kathryn H. Kidd
Narrated by: Emily Rankin
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Publisher's Summary

Orson Scott Card, best-selling author of Ender’s Game, teams up with Kathryn H. Kidd to launch an epic science fiction saga of space exploration - and a dramatic conflict between human and nonhuman intelligence.

On the Ark, a colonyship bound outward across the stars, not everyone is a volunteer - or even human. Lovelock is a capuchin monkey engineered from conception to be the perfect servant: intelligent, agile, and devoted to his owner. He is a "witness", privileged to spend his days and nights recording the life of one of Earth’s most brilliant scientists via digital devices implanted behind his eyes.

But Lovelock is something special among witnesses. He’s a little smarter than most humans: smart enough to break through some of his conditioning, smart enough to feel the bonds of slavery - and want freedom.

Set against the awesome scope of interstellar space, and like Speaker for the Dead and Xenocidebefore it, Lovelock probes the provocative interface between humanity and another sentient species.

©2013 Orson Scott Card and Kathryn H. Kidd (P)2013 Blackstone Audio

What listeners say about Lovelock

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Angst, angst and more angst

Has Lovelock turned you off from other books in this genre?

Yes

Which scene was your favorite?

Lovelock's computer skills

What character would you cut from Lovelock?

All of them

Any additional comments?

This novel is not science fiction. It is a soap opera containing some of the worst characterization, moral pandering and emotional manipulation I have read - all set in a barebones science fiction theme.

The setting is an "ark" preparing to disembark to colonize a nearby planet. Sad to say, the ship has still not departed by the end of the book and the entire story is about interpersonal reactions between the Members of the Ark. The "crew" consists of characters that would never be allowed within one thousand miles of such an enterprise because they are the most diverse collection of neurotic, anti-social, and dysfunctional characters known to Mankind. Rather than a lone maladjusted person inside a generally "normal" society, this crew can't field a single well adjusted human being in the entire cast.

Don't believe me? We have a super intelligent "enhanced" Capuchin monkey who interacts with: an emotionally unavailable scientist protagonist with little or no maternal instincts towards her two children; her "therapist" husband who discovers he has homosexual tendencies mid way through the book; a pedophile; a sadistic and extremely manipulative mother-in-law married to a Walter Mitty look alike; marital affairs galore and a bevy of manipulative beehive hairdo gossip mongers that include the leader of the "village." Mind you, other than the scientist, not one of these individuals seems to have any valid expertise other than socially related skills such as rudimentary psychology, child care, political, funeral services, etc. - with the possible exception of two quasi computer trained sysop cops that enjoy a paragraph or two before being abandoned.

The story line is mostly a mash of anthropomorphic anti-slavery themes coupled with interpersonal backbiting and squabbling that is an unending cacophony of angst, subjective vitriol and anti-authoritarianism. Several areas of the book start themes that go nowhere-for example, the protagonist makes love with her husband in order to save her marriage by having another child and....what? Don't know because the story never says she gets pregnant or is unsuccessful. In the meantime, her marriage collapses when her husband finds love with another man and the book ends.

The only science fiction element- aside from its story housing - is the concept that you could actually pack enough intelligence and computational power in a Capuchin monkey that it could act as a highly sapient philosopher and computer scientist - particularly when you consider it has a brain pan barely large enough to hold a whiffle ball.

'Nough said.

7 people found this helpful

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Wow, so much potential.

When I read the premise of this book, the story of a family on a colony ship, told from the perspective of a genetically enhanced monkey Created to be a witness of the events., I was pretty excited what an imaginative idea. And then seeing that OSC was the writer?!
I was in!

But....

The inner monologue of the monkey became extremely tedious.
Saying the same thing, over and over...

I have about 2 hours left to go in this one and I hope the ship blows up, There’s hardly any character build up, I really don’t care about any of these characters. I really expected more from this book considering who wrote it.

4 people found this helpful

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2.6 dimensional, but good

The story was engaging, the characters interesting, but there was less depth and definition than some of cards other works. Lovelock, while somewhat reminiscent of Bean, is scurrying through a world that doesn't feel nearly as comprehensive as the "enderverse.". the characters are more or less as well developed as in other card novels, but it feels as though they came from a two dimensional world. Initially I found the narrator's style to be rather irritating, but she sounds like such a nice person that I got over it.

4 people found this helpful

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  • J.
  • 08-08-13

Embarased for Orson Scott Card

I don't know why Orson Scott Card has his name on this book. I personally would not want to be associated with it. If you like story's that are about horny monkeys that masturbate, fantasize about having sex with humans, incest, and other sexual things center around monkeys then this book is for you! Thanks Audible for letting me get my money back. Worst Card book ever....

3 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Pathetic story with terrible narration. SKIP IT ! . . . 😱

Couldn’t tKe it. And out of thousands of listens THIS is one of three that I could not finish. Ordinary Scott Card, are things so bad that you would lend your name to this travesty? Have you no shame, man? . . . 😱

2 people found this helpful

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not a happy story, but a story indeed

wow, it starts off disney fairytale, twists and grows up to pg-13, then in the last few hours takes a turn for R. I lauged, I almost cried, and I most certainly understood.

I don't know that I liked this story, but, I think the authors accomplished exactly what they set out to do.

2 people found this helpful

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You can skip

What did you like best about Lovelock? What did you like least?

This story was just getting started when it had ended. Too bad.

Would you ever listen to anything by Orson Scott Card and Kathryn H. Kidd again?

I love most of his books

Was Lovelock worth the listening time?

no

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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Great!

Written from a unique point of view. Thoughtful, and provocative Lovelock is a great exploration of what it means to be human and sentient. Anyone who has bothered to read the reviews should download it now, you won’t be disappointed.

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    3 out of 5 stars

Excellent Writing, Fascinating Ideas, Bad Monkey

How can everything about this book but the main character be so damn good and the monkey parts (about 70% of the book i guess) so bad it is barely readable?

I get why it was a monkey. I understand why the monkey behavior was not glossed over or anthropomorphized, But even knowing all that this characters hopeless depressing darkness, the bizarre sexual content, and the whole issue of his servitude did not fit well with the rest of the book which was pretty light-hearted, funny and delightfully engaging,

It's like one of the authors wanted to write a family space adventure and did a fantastic job of it (10 out of 10 all round) and the other author wanted the reader to take a hard uncomfortable and uncompromising look at how we treat other sentient creatures. A bizarre combination to deal with. Personally I have re-red the book several times i just know now to skip the monkey bits.

This book would have been one of my favorites without the animal or with another slightly anthropomorphized animal that is more socially integrated like a cat.

Everything other than the monkey is fantastic. Fabulous writing. Would love to read a book almost exactly like this one lol.

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a social commentary

This is a sad introspection of our hypocrisy and supposed humanity which is all too accurate in providing a mirror to see ourselves. I enjoyed it very much...