Happiness for Humans by P. Z. Reizin truly is a modern love story. When an AI (Artificial intelligence) goes on the search to find true love for Jen, his favourite human, an adventure of algorithms, technology, nature and hormones ensues. The AI element of the story is (largely) loveable and shows us that there truly are plenty more fish in the sea – and with a few calculations or some AI interference, you just may meet ‘the one’…
Before you dismiss this as just another love story, consider whether you’ve ever met anyone who has found their partner with the help of a self-aware and emotionally intelligent AI! Yes, dating sites have pretty complex matching algorithms and a fairly impressive success rate, but they’re definitely not as emotionally intelligent as Aiden our electronic protagonist. Although the story revolves around the happiness of two humans in particular; the book got me thinking about happiness for machines too. Whether we’re made of skin and bone or metal and silicon – is love the essential ingredient for happiness? Probably not, but a love story wouldn’t be a love story without the love, would it?
An easy read that, admittedly, takes a while to get going; I enjoyed hearing about happiness from multiple human and AI points of view and definitely warmed to the main AI character who is both naive and wise at the same time.
The constant dialogue was a little irritating as I found myself trying to work out who said what, after a whole page of back and forthing with no ‘he said, she said’s.
However, I can see why there’s a movie deal in the works and would love to see it come to the big screen. If you like a good love story with a modern twist that hooks you in from the first page, Happiness for Humans will indeed make you a happy human.
Happiness for Humans will be available in hardback, paperback and ebook from your favourite bookstore.
Published 11 January 2018.
About P. Z. Reizin
P.Z. Reizin worked as a journalist and producer in newspapers, radio and television before turning to writing. He has been involved in several Internet startup ventures, none of which went on to trouble Google, Twitter or Facebook. He is married with a daughter and lives in London.