The Positronic Man by Isaac Asimov and Robert Silverberg

The Positronic Man

by Isaac Asimov and Robert Silverberg

Form: Novel

Year: 1992

ID: 900

Publication history:


(from Bantam 1995)

In the twenty-first century the creation of the positronic brain leads to the development of robot laborers and revolutionizes life on Earth. But to the Martin family, their household robot NDR-113 is more than a mechanical servant. "Andrew" has become a trusted friend, a confidant, a member of the family. For through some unknown manufacturing glitch, Andrew has been blessed with a capacity for love and a drive toward self-awareness and development that are almost...human.

But almost is not enough. Andrew's dream is to become fully human. Facing human prejudice, the laws of robotics, and his own mechanical limitations, Andrew will use science and law in his terrifying choice: to make his dream a reality, he must pay the ultimate price.


Another Asimov collaboration (with Nightfall and The Ugly Little Boy), this one based on Asimov's classic story The Bicentennial Man, and to my mind, the best of the three (best cover art, too).

It gets the following recommendation by email from another Silverberg fan:

My younger brother called me one night and said, Go the bookstore right now and buy this book. Well, I waited until the next day and I was well pleased. The book is one of the best I've read and I read a lot... The story is well written and in a way quite humbling. It's a must-read for any Silverberg fan and also for anyone that enjoys Data from Star Trek:TNG. The main character could be Data's forefather as it were.

The Disney-produced movie called Bicentennial Man is based partly on this book, with Robin Williams in the title role. I can't say I really recommend the movie, as it is (in typical Robin Williams fashion) overly sentimental and loses some of the best points of the original.

Online reviews:

Other resources:

[None on record]