Official Review: The Alexander Gambit by Robert M Leonard

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Juliet+1
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Latest Review: The Alexander Gambit by Robert M Leonard

Official Review: The Alexander Gambit by Robert M Leonard

Post by Juliet+1 » 03 Nov 2019, 17:04

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "The Alexander Gambit" by Robert M Leonard.]
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3 out of 4 stars
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What does it mean to be human? And is it safe to indulge in the human emotions of love and friendship when you are on a mission to save the planet from a potential disaster? These are the questions confronting Christopher Alexander, an artificial intelligence who shares his body with another artificial intelligence, The Wraith, a fearful creature who wreaks vengeance on violent criminals.

Zeke Whitaker, a soldier who was kidnapped from Earth, held for 20 years while learning advanced technologies, and then returned to his home planet, created both Christopher and The Wraith. Zeke is presumably no longer present in the enhanced body his creations share, but some of the attitudes and opinions of Chris and The Wraith suggest that Zeke may be silently lurking.

During a vacation on Mykonos, Christopher becomes involved with Carmen Rodriguez, a practicing psychologist and mother of Ana, a young teen that Chris saves from drowning. While Ana recovers from her injuries, all three develop a close relationship. Chris learns the value of interpersonal ties and the importance of family. But he is programmed to deny emotions and focus on his mission, which involves designing and building aerospace vehicles using the extraterrestrial technology acquired by his progenitor. He can, however, alter his programming. Striving to resolve the conflict between his mission and his desire to have a more normal human life, Chris switches back and forth between his public persona of highly intelligent, successful industrialist and his evolving character of thoughtful, supportive friend.

I enjoyed the simplicity of Robert M. Leonard's The Alexander Gambit. With only a few main characters, the narrative is able to devote considerable attention to each one. Although this novel clearly falls within the science fiction genre, it is not an action-packed, space adventure. Rather, it is a personal journey that examines many facets of human existence and culture. It challenges the reader to question almost everything about the way we live. The story is engaging, and Chris is sympathetic because we see and understand his struggles.

I did not appreciate The Wraith. Although he narrates only two chapters, in which he recounts in great detail the killing and maiming of criminals that he catches in the act, these chapters don't seem to fit at all well with the rest of the book. However, Christopher does mention several times that The Wraith is essential to the success of Zeke's master plan.

This novel deserves four stars for its intriguing plot, clever use of technology, and excellent character development. It also deserves to lose a point for an excessive number of typos. These errors often required a pause to determine what the author was trying to say. I recommend a more thorough edit. But it is still a great story, even with a mere 3 out of 4 stars.

Readers who appreciate sociological science fiction would enjoy The Alexander Gambit. However, this book is definitely for a mature audience. In addition to copious amounts of profanity, it has explicit sexual content and discussions of sexual preferences.

******
The Alexander Gambit
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Post by Helene_2008 » 04 Nov 2019, 20:08

What a crazy plot! To create two different artificial intelligences and have them possess your body with you? Sounds like there will be a bit of a power struggle. This is definitely a unique plot.

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Post by Miller56 » 04 Nov 2019, 20:31

Thanks for the review. This sounds like an interesting book to read. Can artificial intelligence beings feel human emotions? I guess the human side of Christopher must be in control of the emotional side of his mixed body. This sounds like a book I would enjoy even with the typos, although I may find the sexual content and profanity unnecessary for the story.

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Post by kandscreeley » 04 Nov 2019, 20:41

Even with the errors, I'm interested in this one. The plot sounds intriguing. I like, too, that the author explores personal journeys. It sounds like a good mix. Thanks.
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Post by reneelu1998 » 04 Nov 2019, 23:54

I love the idea of this book. It sounds very unique and interesting! Thank you for the well-written review :)

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Post by tristenb » 05 Nov 2019, 08:00

The plot sounds interesting. I have a feeling human emotions will become more important than the mission, but I'd be interested in finding out. Thanks for your review!

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Post by LinaMueller » 05 Nov 2019, 16:15

I must admit that the storyline looks fantastic. I'll put it on my bookshelf. Excellent review as always, Juliet+1.
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Latest Review: The Alexander Gambit by Robert M Leonard

Post by Juliet+1 » 05 Nov 2019, 19:59

Miller56 wrote:
04 Nov 2019, 20:31
Thanks for the review. This sounds like an interesting book to read. Can artificial intelligence beings feel human emotions? I guess the human side of Christopher must be in control of the emotional side of his mixed body. This sounds like a book I would enjoy even with the typos, although I may find the sexual content and profanity unnecessary for the story.
Oh, the sexual content is definitely necessary, not so much doing it as talking about it -- working out the nature and terms of the relationship. It was interesting and even a bit funny. :D

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Post by sanjus » 06 Nov 2019, 21:20

Quite interesting to note that Christopher Alexander, an artificial intelligence who shares his body with another artificial intelligence which results in a fearful creature which wreaks vengeance on violent criminals and is nicely presented in the book "The Alexander Gambit" by Robert M Leonard.
life is only knowing the unknown, we can do this by reading books easily- I believe this is my own quote. If someone quoted this before I am glad to know.

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Post by Bambiears » 07 Nov 2019, 11:38

Thank you for the amount of time you dedicated to this reveiw. Good job.

Editing is such an important deal. Maybe there is a lack of affordable editors or editing sevices available? I have not yet read a perfectly edited book in my time as a book club member.

I don't think I will be reading this one, it just is not my type.

Thank you again.

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Latest Review: The Alexander Gambit by Robert M Leonard

Post by Juliet+1 » 07 Nov 2019, 18:59

Bambiears wrote:
07 Nov 2019, 11:38
Thank you for the amount of time you dedicated to this reveiw. Good job.

Editing is such an important deal. Maybe there is a lack of affordable editors or editing sevices available? I have not yet read a perfectly edited book in my time as a book club member.

I don't think I will be reading this one, it just is not my type.

Thank you again.
Thanks for stopping by to leave a comment. I agree with you about the importance of editing, especially for authors who publish their own work. And I didn't enjoy typing in all ten errors either! :D

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Post by Sam Ibeh » 08 Nov 2019, 02:54

I like novels that do not only tell vague stories, but also challenges me to think. I'd definitely love to read this book. That's a well crafted review you've got there.

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Post by Nkoo » 09 Nov 2019, 14:09

I hope the author takes the hint from your review. Thanks for pointing out the disjointed element in The Wraith's character and the number of errors that flawed the book. Beautiful review!

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Post by Letora » 10 Nov 2019, 05:43

This sounds like it can be quite a complex plot. I would find this a tough one to write. I'm sad to see The Wraith didn't have many chapters, I would have loved to see someone weave the two personalities and the conflicts that brewed between them.
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Post by djr6090 » 11 Nov 2019, 08:42

Sam Ibeh wrote:
08 Nov 2019, 02:54
I like novels that do not only tell vague stories, but also challenges me to think. I'd definitely love to read this book. That's a well crafted review you've got there.
I like the ones that make you think, too. Maybe that is why sci-fi has always fascinated me.

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