Sue Burke. Healthy, Wealthy and Wise. (Interzone #232, Jan-Feb 2011).

A story which I found a bit of a struggle.

The story is seen through the digital eyes of an Invisible Friend, one of the AIs that have become popular in the States, a simple app to install on a mobile phone, but one capable of facilitating communication and friendship. We follow the Invisible Friend as its owner, a young American student working in Spain, struggles with emnity from her host family and friends. It’s a dialogue-led story, and I found it difficult to keep track of who was saying what to whom, and three main characters interacted, as reported by the AI. Interestingly, the author has lived in Spain for some time, and at times the structure of some of the writing felt the kind of awkward you get when speaking a different language, or returning to your native language having not used it much. Generally I found the tone of the writing to be what I would imagine late-teen fiction to be.

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