Review: Code of the Lifemaker

A Must-Read in Science Fiction

There have been only a handful of science fiction novels that have kept me reading from one page to the next, and Code of the Lifemaker is certainly not the least among them. James P. Hogan does a spectacular job of laying out a truly wonderful story against a backdrop of a not-so-different-from-our-own human society that lends both credibility and disbelief to the plot. From the introduction of the man who (arguably) serves as the main protagonist–Karl Zambendorf–to the grand revelation about what lurks on the surface of Titan to the climactic finish that will have you clawing at the page to see the conclusion, Code of the Lifemaker does not disappoint.

The story follows, for the most part, two chief characters, the first being mentalist and all-around huckster Karl Zambendorf, whose savvy team of operatives have been headlining for years leading up to the greatest publicity stunt in history: putting a psychic on Mars. Little does the public know, however, that the interplanetary mission has a hidden agenda involving a sentient machine called Thirg. In a whirlwind of events, the North Atlantic Space Organization is pitted against robotic enclaves of religious fanatics bent on the assimilation or utter destruction of all living things, and it seems that only Zambendorf and his merry crew stand between the peaceful Carthogians and the warmongering Kroaxians.

Fans of hard science will likely grin at the first bit of this book, as it goes to some length to describe evolutionary biology in a robotic analogue, and anyone who has an interest in skepticism and logic will no doubt recognize the similarities between a certain character in the novel and the legendary James Randi. This book found its way into my personal library quite by accident, but it securing a permanent place on my shelves was no accident at all.

Code of the Lifemaker


JC Augustus Lai Andurin

J.C. Augustus Lai Andurin is an Irish-American author and philosopher. Having spent much of his life traveling the U.S., Europe, and Asia, he has a fierce wanderlust and thirst for knowledge. Despite his adventurous spirit, he is a husband and father, first and foremost, with three wonderful children.

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  • gohan108

    Science fiction happens to be my favorite book genre, so anyone that recommends a good science fiction read gets a thumbs up from me.