When the Sparrow Falls by Neil Sharpson
Life in the Caspian Republic has taught Agent Nikolai South two rules. Trust No One. And work just hard enough not to make enemies.
Here, in the last sanctuary for the dying embers of the human race in a world run by artificial intelligence, if you stray from the path – your life is forfeit. But when a Party propagandist is killed – and is discovered as a “machine” – he’s given a new mission: chaperone the widow, Lily, who has arrived to claim her husband’s remains.
But when South sees that she, the first “machine” ever allowed into the country, bears an uncanny resemblance to his late wife, he’s thrown into a maelstrom of betrayal, murder, and conspiracy that may bring down the Republic for good.
I have read several books (and watched movies) about a post-apocalyptic world controlled by AI. This had some fun twists that I couldn’t resist. The human country where South resides, has unsteady relations with the outside world. Many in the Caspian Republic are anti-artificial intelligence. And when an outspoken Party member opposed to machines is killed and found out to be one of them, South is tasked with escorting his widow to recover his personal effects. But Lily (an AI herself) looks exactly like South’s late (human) wife.
When the Sparrow Falls is a thrilling novel of espionage and intrigue. SciFi and spy novel fans will enjoy this well-paced adventure. Full of twists and surprises, this story had me enthralled and guessing to the very end.