Grove Press
Grove Press
Grove Press

12 Bytes

How AI Will Change the Way We Live and Love

by Jeanette Winterson

Twelve eye-opening, mind-expanding, funny and provocative essays on the implications of artificial intelligence for the way we live and the way we love from New York Times bestselling author Jeanette Winterson

  • Imprint Grove Paperback
  • Page Count 368
  • Publication Date February 21, 2023
  • ISBN-13 978-0-8021-6036-2
  • Dimensions 5.5" x 8.25"
  • US List Price $17.00
  • Imprint Grove Hardcover
  • Page Count 336
  • Publication Date October 12, 2021
  • ISBN-13 978-0-8021-5925-0
  • Dimensions 5.5" x 8.25"
  • US List Price $27.00
  • Imprint Grove Paperback
  • Publication Date October 12, 2021
  • ISBN-13 978-0-8021-5926-7
  • US List Price $27.00

From the New York Times-bestselling author of Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?, Jeanette Winterson, comes an original and entertaining new collection drawing on her years of thinking and reading about artificial intelligence in its bewildering manifestations. She looks to history, religion, myth, literature, the politics of race and gender, and computer science to help us understand the radical changes to the way we live and love that are happening now.

When we create non-biological life forms, will we do so in our own image? Or will we accept the once-in-a-species opportunity to remake ourselves in their image? What do love, caring, sex, and attachment look like when humans form connections with non-human helpers, teachers, sex workers, and companions? And what will happen to our deep-rooted assumptions about gender? Will the physical body that is our home soon be enhanced by biological and neural implants, keeping us fitter, younger, and connected? Is it time to join Elon Musk and leave Planet Earth?

With wit, compassion, and curiosity, Winterson tackles AI’s most interesting talking points, from the algorithms that data-dossier your whole life, to the weirdness of backing up your brain.

Tags Essays

Praise for 12 Bytes:

A “Books of 2021” pick at the Guardian, the Financial Times, and the Evening Standard

“Inspiring, accessible… books like this one, which break down complex computing and philosophical ideas into punchy, often beautiful prose (‘poetical science’), are necessary… Winterson’s most impassioned message is that we must learn from the past to learn from our mistakes.”—Airmail

“Winterson covers the past, present, and future of artificial intelligence in this fascinating survey… Through well-paced and articulate prose, Winterson makes granular tech know-how remarkably accessible…This is full of insight.” —Publishers Weekly

“Thought-provoking and necessary — and sometimes very funny.”—Guardian (UK)

“A vigorous, sharp mind probes the world of computer science and more… Digestible, witty, and provocative… Tucked into the corners of these erudite essays are multitudes of fascinating facts and thoughtful what-if speculations… Winterson is excellent at compressing a great deal of technical, scientific, philosophical, literary, and religious material.”—Kirkus Reviews

Praise for Frankissstein:

“This novel is talky, smart, anarchic and quite sexy. You begin to linger on those three s’s when you speak the title aloud.”–Dwight Garner, New York Times

“Winterson has stitched together that rarest of beasts: a novel that is both deeply thought-provoking and provocative yet also unabashedly entertaining (I laughed out loud more times than I could count). Frankissstein, like its protagonist Ry, is a hybrid: a novel that defies conventional expectations and exists, brilliantly and defiantly, on its own terms.”–Sarah Lotz, New York Times Book Review 

“A brainy, batty story– an unholy amalgamation of scholarship and comedy. [Winterson] manages to pay homage to Shelley’s insight and passion while demonstrating her own extraordinary creativity… This is no work of conventional literary history. I’’s just a jump to the left… The dialogue is slick and funny, often delightfully obscene, but beneath all the kookiness, Winterson is satirizing sexual politics and exploring complicated issues of human desire… A bag of provocative tricks and treats. With diabolical ingenuity, [Winterson’s] found a way to inject fresh questions about humanity’s future into the old veins of Frankenstein.”—Ron Charles, Washington Post

“A riotous reimagining with an energy and passion all of its own that reanimates Frankenstein as a cautionary tale for a contemporary moment dominated by debates about Brexit, gender, artificial intelligence and medical experimentation… While the story has a gripping momentum of its own, it also fizzes with ideas.”—Financial Times

Frankissstein is intellectually bracing and sexually explicit; a historical literary romp and a futuristic thriller. It, like its characters, rejects the binary.”—Carolyn Kellogg, Los Angeles Times

“Spellbinding… artfully structured, unexpectedly funny, and impressively dynamic.”—Elena Sheppard, Los Angeles Review of Books 

“A surge of inventiveness… Frankissstein is a book that seeks to shift our perspective on humanity and the purpose of being human in the most darkly entertaining way… gloriously well observed.”—Observer

“Winterson reboots Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein for the 21st Century, launching us into a hold-on-to-your-hat modern-day horror story about very modern-day neuroses and issues.”—BBC News

“Intelligent and inventive… Frankissstein is very funny. There has always been a fine line between horror and high camp, and this is a boundary that Winterson gleefully exploits.”—The Times

“Devilishly scintillating and quite touching… buy and adore this astute, wildly inventive and totally unique book.”—Alexis Burling, San Francisco Chronicle 

“A timeless writer… [Frankissstein is] brisk, romantic, sharp-humored.”—Angela Watercutter, Wired

“Refreshingly, Jeanette Winterson’s Frankissstein… is a wildly inventive reimagining of one of science fiction’s most beloved stories… lyrical, gloriously raunchy, pulpy and absurd.”—New Scientist

“A clever comic romp that teases at the nature–and future–of life, death and what it is to be human, without ever being ponderous”¦ [Frankissstein is] first-rate.”—Daily Mail

“Readers are in deft hands… I can think of no better guide to our transforming world that Winterson.”—Prospect

“Funny and philosophical… This is a love story about life itself from a gifted writer.”—Psychologies

“Yes, the book we have all been waiting for. Yes, everything Winterson has always done so well. Yes, above and beyond anything that is yet to be written.”—Daisy Johnson

“Hilarious but serious time-travel gambol with Frankenstein: modern doubles into AI, cryogenics, and sexbots. (Hint: Mod. Byron does not come out of it well.)”—Margaret Atwood