Charon is dead, and though General Wharington's team has deleted all the electronic copies of him, one problem remains: Alpha. Indistinguishable from a woman, Alpha has superhuman capabilities and Wharington's superiors want her dismantled and studied but he believes her behavior is becoming more human. Is she developing emotions, or just learning to counterfeit them?
Spanning four generations and three continents, Jennifer Acker brings us the story of the Chandarias: Sunil, a struggling philosophy doctoral candidate, and his parents Urmila and Premchand. Sunil's sudden marriage to his Jewish American girlfriend Amy compels a tumultuous family reunion in Nairobi, his parents' birthplace. After learning a long-buried family secret, and enduring a severe trauma, Sunil and Amy try to sustain their love as they wrestle with the weight of difference.
The shipwrecked stranger washed up on the beach near Samantha's home turns out to be a half-human experiment by the notorious criminal Charon, a practitioner of illegal robotics with evil plans. Samantha and the man seek help from Sunrise Alley, an underground organization of AIs that have gone rogue.